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Fed. court orders resentencing in Arkansas bombing

(AP) Fed. court orders resentencing in Arkansas bombing
LITTLE ROCK, Ark.
An Arkansas doctor sentenced to life in prison for a 2009 bombing that nearly killed the head of the state medical board should be resentenced on some convictions, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday.

A jury convicted Randeep Mann in 2010 of conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction and other charges in the Feb. 4, 2009, attack on Dr. Trent Pierce. Mann's attorneys appealed, arguing there wasn't enough evidence to convict him.

The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the weapon of mass destruction conviction but said Thursday that Mann shouldn't have received a sentencing enhancement based on allegations that he ordered the assault of an inmate. The panel said the allegation was never brought up in court and was improperly referenced in a pre-sentencing report.

The court also ordered that one of Mann's two weapons convictions be tossed, finding they amounted to double jeopardy.

Prosecutors said Mann was responsible for a bomb left outside Pierce's home in West Memphis, Ark., after the board suspended Mann's license following the overdose death of some of his patients. Pierce has said he believes the attack, which took away his sense of smell and left him blind in one eye and deaf in one ear, was revenge for revoking Mann's license to prescribe narcotics.

"Mann had a long history of investigations by the Board, and Dr. Pierce testified that he had been particularly vocal about his belief that Mann was providing improper care to his patients," the appeals court opinion said.

A message was left Thursday with one of Mann's attorneys, Blake Hendrix. A spokeswoman for federal prosecutors in eastern Arkansas said she would reach out to the U.S. Attorney for comment.

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