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News & Announcements: 2023-11

Check this page, or the News and Announcements box on the homepage, for the latest official news and announcements released by the court. You can also access archived news and announcements from this page.

November 22, 2023
The current term of office of United States Magistrate Judge Janis van Meerveld at New Orleans, Louisiana, is due to expire on July 31, 2024. The United States District Court is required by law to establish a panel of citizens to consider the reappointment of a magistrate judge to a new eight (8) year term. The court is currently assembling a Merit Selection Panel. The names of the panel members will be published.  The duties of a magistrate judge include the following: (1) conducting most preliminary proceedings in criminal cases; (2) trial and disposition of misdemeanor cases; (3) conducting various pretrial matters and evidentiary proceedings on delegation from the judges of the district court; and (4) trial and disposition of civil cases upon consent of the parties. Comments from members of the bar and the public are invited as to whether the incumbent magistrate judge should be recommended by the panel for reappointment by the court and may be sent via email to or mailed to Carol L. Michel, Clerk, United States District Court, 500 Poydras Street, Room C-151, New Orleans, Louisiana 70130.  Comments must be received by February 20, 2024.  
November 21, 2023
The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana has issued a general order concerning Amendment 821 to the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines. The U.S. Sentencing Commission made certain provisions of the Amendment retroactive, permitting eligible defendants to receive sentence reductions. The Court’s order establishes the 821 Screening Committee that will review the cases of defendants identified as potentially eligible for a sentence reduction by the U.S. Sentencing Commission, the U.S. Probation Office, the Federal Public Defender’s Office, or the U.S. Attorney’s Office, as well as the cases of other defendants who file motions seeking Amendment 821 sentence reductions and cases referred for screening by the Court’s judges. For additional details, please see the Court’s General Order.