Just published by the American Bar Association, "Crimes and Punishments: Entering the Mind of a Sentencing Judge" by Frederic Block, a long-time federal district court judge, allows readers a view of how a judge decides on an appropriate sentence and feels about putting a person in prison for an extended period of time.

Block explores the criminal justice system's important sentencing issues. He candidly shares his feelings and is reflective, often describing his concerns that his life experiences and subconscious thoughts could influence the sentences he determines.

Block also tells the stories of the trials of Peter Gotti (who succeeded his brother John as head of the Gambino crime family) and Pedro Espada Jr. (the former leader of the New York Senate), among others. He takes the reader through the crimes and sentencing proceedings and shares his thoughts about whether he made the right decisions.

Block was appointed United States District Court judge for the Eastern District of New York in 1994. He received a bachelor's degree from Indiana University and his law degree from Cornell Law School. After 25 years on the bench, Block continues to maintain a full caseload. He also regularly sits by designation on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, where he has authored over a dozen opinions. Block recently authored the "reality-fiction" novel "Race to Judgment," after having written his highly acclaimed memoir "Disrobed, An Inside Look at the Life and Work of a Federal Trial Judge."

"Crimes and Punishments: Entering the Mind of a Sentencing Judge" costs $34.95 and can be ordered by calling 800-285-2221 or online at

Published: Thu, Aug 01, 2019