By Julia Edwards and Aruna Viswanatha WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Justice Department laid out new clemency guidelines on Wednesday that are expected to make thousands of drug offenders eligible for a reduction in the sentences they are currently serving. Under the new guidelines, inmates that were sentenced under laws that have since changed, have served at least 10 years of their sentence and are nonviolent may be re-examined by the Justice Department and suggested to the president for clemency. Deputy Attorney General James Cole, who announced the details of the plan, said the most obvious candidates for review were those sentenced before a 2010 law that lowered the terms for crack cocaine possession charges. "These older, stringent punishments that are out of line with sentences imposed under today's laws erode people's confidence in our criminal justice system," Cole said at a news conference on Wednesday.
By Aruna Viswanatha WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Department of Justice has named Marshall Miller as the new No. 2 official in its criminal division, after a spate of departures thinned its top ranks, according to an internal memo obtained on Wednesday. Miller, who was most recently chief of the criminal division at the U.S. Attorney's office in Brooklyn, is now the deputy head of the 600-lawyer criminal division at department headquarters in Washington, said a DoJ memo dated April 17. "He's done a great job in Brooklyn," said John Buretta, Miller's predecessor in the criminal division until last November when he joined the law firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore.
OPAL, Wyo. (AP) — A small town in southwest Wyoming was evacuated Wednesday after an explosion and fire at a natural gas processing facility and major national pipeline hub. There were no reports of injuries.