What is an Armed Career Offender?

This video features David Cohen, a Criminal Law attorney based in New York.

New York Defense Lawyer Explains

Video Transcript:

Rob Rosenthal: 

Do you know what it means to be a career offender or armed career offender in federal court? We're asking New York City lawyer, David Jason Cohen, in this Ask the Lawyers Quick Question.

David Jason Cohen: 

Career offender means that you have... And both of them actually means that you have prior convictions, a particularized convictions will just take one, the career offender that you have, either an armed prior felony conviction, a crime of violence, felony conviction, I should say, or a drug felony conviction, two of them, they are called qualifying offenses. And then your third offense is also a qualifying offense, and that third offense makes you a career offender. Your suggested guidelines, which means the amount of time that Congress has determined is appropriate for a sentence for someone convicted of that crime, is much higher because of your prior convictions. Career offenders and armed career offenders face much more significant consequences than if it is just your first or second offense, or if your prior convictions were not for those types of crimes.

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