United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Terre Haute Division
ORDER DENYING WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS PURSUANT TO 28
U.S.C. § 2241 AND DIRECTING ENTRY OF FINAL
Jane Magnus-Stinson, Chief Judge
John Raftopoulos seeks a writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 2241. He argues that he is entitled to relief
under Mathis v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 2243
(2016), because he does not have the necessary predicate
convictions to qualify as a career offender under Section
4B1.1 of the United States Sentencing Guidelines (U.S.S.G.).
For the reasons explained below, his petition is
Factual and Procedural Background
John Raftopoulos is an inmate currently housed at the United
States Penitentiary, located in Terre Haute, Indiana.
Raftopoulos was indicted in the Middle District of Florida
and pleaded guilty to one count of robbery of a bank using
force and violence or intimidation, in violation of 18 U.S.C.
presentence report (“PSR”) used the 2012
Guidelines Manual to determine his offense level. Pursuant to
U.S.S.G. § 2B3.1, Raftopoulos had a base offense level
of 20. Two level were added because the property belonged to
a financial institution, pursuant to § 2B3.1(b)(1). Two
levels were added since Raftopoulos engaged in conduct that
instilled fear of death in the victim teller, pursuant to
§ 2B3.1(b)(2)(F). Raftopoulos's adjusted offense
level was 24.
identified several prior convictions: grand theft, burglary
of a vehicle, battery, resisting arrest with violence,
possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and bank
robbery. However, the two identified by the PSR for purposes
of the career offender enhancement were a 1991 Felon in
Possession of a Firearm, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
922(g) in the Southern District of Florida, and a 2000 Bank
Robbery, in violation of 18 U.S.C. 2113, in the Southern
District of Florida. Since it was determined that Raftopoulos
was a career offender as defined in § 4B1.1, his total
offense level became 29.
received a three-level reduction for acceptance of
responsibility, leaving him with a total offense level of 26.
Raftopoulos was found to have a criminal history category of
VI. Based on a total offense level of 26 and a criminal
history category of VI, Raftopoulos's guideline
imprisonment range was 120 to 150 months' imprisonment.
4, 2013, Raftopoulos was sentenced to 120 months'
imprisonment. Raftopoulos appealed his sentence and the
Eleventh Circuit affirmed Raftopolous's sentence and
The district court reasonably determined that a sentence at
the low end of Raftopolous's advisory guideline range of
120 to 150 months of imprisonment was necessary to address
his crime; his lack of respect for the law; his history of
offenses involving “force and violence”; and to
prevent him from committing future similar crimes that
endangered the public. See United States v. Talley,
431 F.3d 784, 788 (11th Cir. 2005). Moreover, Raftopoulos
faced a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years, but was
incorrectly assigned an offense level of 29 instead of an
offense level of 32, see United States Sentencing
Guidelines Manual § 4B1.1(b) (Nov. 2012), which would
have resulted in a guidelines range between 151 and 188
months of imprisonment, id. ch. 5, pt. A. The
district court did not abuse its discretion in imposing a
sentence of 120 months, which is well below the statutory
maximum penalty for Raftopolous's offense. See United
States v. Gonzalez, 550 F.3d 1319, 1324 (11th Cir.
United States v. Raftopoulos, 556 Fed.Appx. 864
(11th Cir. 2014).
24, 2016, Raftopoulos filed a motion to vacate his sentence
asserting that after Johnson v. United States, 135
S.Ct. 2551 (2015) his possession of a firearm conviction no
longer qualified as a crime of violence. When Beckles v.
United States, 137 S.Ct. 886 (2017), was decided,
Raftopoulos dismissed his § 2255 motion.
before the Court is Raftopoulos's petition for a writ of
habeas corpus under § 2241 challenging his sentence.
alleges he is no longer a career offender under the
Sentencing Guidelines in view of the Supreme Court's
decision in Mathis v. United States, 136 S.Ct. 2243
(2016). In particular, he claims that his 1990 conviction for
possession of a firearm no longer qualifies him as a career
offender under § 4B1.1 of the Sentencing Guidelines. The
respondent argues that this Court ...