In Murphy the district court held that its Rule 35(b) order did not reset the clock and dismissed the petitioner’s § 2255 motion.
The issue before the Eleventh Circuit is whether a district court order reducing a defendant’s sentence pursuant to Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 35(b) for the defendant’s substantial assistance is a new “judgment of conviction” that resets the one-year statute of limitations for filing a motion to vacate a conviction and sentence under 28 U.S.C. § 2255.
Previously, the Sixth Circuit has held that a Rule 35(b) modification does not constitute a new judgment of conviction that restarts § 2255’s statute of limitations clock. See, Reichert v. United States, 101 F. App’x 13, 14 (6th Cir. 2004) “Under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(b), the defendant’s original judgment of conviction remains the final judgment even if his sentence has been modified or reduced as the result of the government filing a Rule 35 motion.”
The court reasoned that because Congress has declared that a Rule 35(b) reduction of a sentence does not affect the finality of a judgment of conviction, and because a Rule 35(b) reduction does not constitute a resentencing where an old sentence is invalidated and replaced with a new one, the statute of limitations need not be reset.