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Linney Duncan

I am a prisoner of the War on Drugs, and a victim of Mandatory Minimum Sentencing. I am a male 36 years old and was sentenced to ten years at FCI Beckley West Virginia in 1997 for conspiracy to sell cocaine, marijuana, and methamphetamine. I am a low level, non-violent, first time offender with a few state priors but no other drug charges.

I became involved in a life of drugs from a previous marriage. It was a very destructive marriage from the start; one which involved using and selling of drugs. I was the little guy ( the gofer ). Most of the time all I made off a deal was cocaine to supply my own habit and that of my ex-wife. Other times I was sent by her uncle to get a supply of pot or cocaine for him, not knowing the dealer was wired by the Feds. It wasn't even my deal. There were a few times I made runs for myself and I trusted these guys by telling them of my connection, which also got on tape. Therefore, I am here. Because of mandatory minimum sentencing I was unable to use these extenuating circumstances at my sentencing.

I have a new wife and a 9 year old daughter who are having a rough go of it with my incarceration both physically and mentally. They visit me once a week here. The drive is only 2.5 hours from home so it's not too bad.

My wife is a remarkable lady; she has devoted many hours working with organizations like NOVEMBER to get my freedom. She writes letters to legislators and is constantly on the Internet keeping up with what is happening with the war on drugs, not only for me, but for all of the prisoners of these harsh drug laws. We prisoners need all the help we can get. Had I met her years ago my life would not be in this mess. I also could not use the fact that I had a new wife and a new drug free life at my sentencing because of MMS. Her being the strong eager and loving person she is has been by far more rehabilitating for me than any amount of prison term they could hand to me and now they have taken that from me. Is this justice?

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