Health Conditions

Poor Health Conditions leads to inmate’s release.

April 21, 2021

Health Conditions

United States v. Pappa

United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida

2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 75976

Health conditions factor into court’s approval of compassionate release request

On September 4, 1997, the court sentenced Evelyn Cecilia Bozon Pappa to life imprisonment for her role in a large drug trafficking enterprise. Pappa filed a motion for compassionate release, arguing that her underlying health conditions, which include obesity and a history of smoking, in conjunction with the threat of contracting COVID-19 in prison, qualify as extraordinary and compelling reasons for a sentence reduction to time-served.

Pappa’s underlying medical conditions include, but are not limited to, obesity, a history of smoking, and a history of hypertension), advanced age (59), and ethnicity (Latina) and all combine to increase her risk of severe complications were she to contract COVID-19. She states that if released, she will voluntarily leave the United States, return to her home country of Colombia, and live with her eldest daughter.

In its review, the court noted that Type 2 diabetes mellitus and hypertension demonstrated extraordinary and compelling reasons for sentence reduction based on”heightened vulnerability” to severe illness from COVID-19). Additionally both the government and the court agree that Papa does not present a danger to others or to the community, and that all these factors, including the fact that Pappa has served twenty-six years in prison, support her request for compassionate release. Therefore, the court made the decision to grant her request. She will serve five years of supervised release.

About Brandon Sample

Brandon Sample is an attorney, author, and criminal justice reform activist. Brandon’s law practice is focused on federal criminal defense, federal appeals, federal post-conviction relief, federal civil rights litigation, federal administrative law, and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

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