The Supreme Court of the United States announced decisions in five cases this morning:

Tapia v. United States, No. 10-5400: Petitioner was convicted of, inter alia, smuggling unauthorized aliens into the United States. The District Court imposed a 51-month prison term, reasoning that petitioner should serve that long in order to qualify for and complete the Bureau of Prisons’ Residential Drug Abuse Program. The Court today reversed and remanded, holding that the Sentencing Reform Act precludes federal courts from imposing or lengthening a prison term in order to promote a criminal defendant's rehabilitation.

The Court's decision is available here.

Smith v. Bayer Corp., No. 09-1205: Respondent (Bayer) had moved in Federal District Court for an injunction ordering a state court not to consider a motion for class certification filed by petitioners, who were plaintiffs in the state-court action. Bayer thought such an injunction was warranted because, in a separate case, it had persuaded the same Federal District Court to deny a similar class certification motion that had been filed against it by a different plaintiff. The district court granted the injunction and the Eighth Circuit affirmed. Today, however, the Supreme Court reversed, holding that the federal court exceeded its authority under the "relitigation exception" to the Anti-Injunction Act, which permits injunctions to prevent state litigation of claims or issues previously presented to and decided by the federal court. The injunction was improper because the federal and state class certification rules differed and because the state court plaintiff was not a party to the previous federal suit.

The Court's decision is available here.

J. D. B. v. North Carolina, No. 09-11121: Petitioner, a 13-year-old, seventh-grade student, was questioned by police at his school regarding two home break-ins. He was not given Miranda warnings until after confessing, and after receiving the Miranda warning, provided further details. Today, the Court held that a child's age properly informs the Miranda custody analysis, and reversed and remanded to state court.

The Court's decision is available here.

Davis v. United States, No. 09-11328: Petitioner was convicted on a firearm possession charge. The firearm was found during a routine vehicle stop in which police complied with binding appellate precedent in effect at that time. While on appeal, however, that binding precedent was overruled. The Court held today that searches conducted in objectively reasonable reliance on binding appellate precedent are not subject to the exclusionary rule.

The Court's decision is available here.

Bond v. United States, No. 09-1227: Petitioner was criminally indicted for violating 18 U.S.C. § 229, which is part of a federal Act implementing a chemical weapons treaty ratified by the United States, and challenged the charge on the ground that the statute exceeded Congress' constitutional authority to enact. The District Court denied the challenge on the merits, while the Third Circuit held she lacked standing. Today, the Supreme Court reversed and remanded, holding that a person indicted for violating a federal statute has standing to challenge its validity on grounds that, by enacting it, Congress exceeding its powers under the Constitution, thus intruding upon the sovereignty and authority of the States.

The Court's decision is available here.