On July 26, 2006, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit ruled that a business executive convicted of violating Medicare billing regulations be sentenced to at least three years in prison, overturning the trial judge’s three-month sentence. The appeals court held that the “voluntary” Sentencing Guidelines required the longer sentence. The decision was a setback for WLF, which filed a brief urging a shorter sentence and arguing that trial courts are permitted to depart from draconian sentences specified by the Guidelines. WLF noted that the executive’s far-more-culpable co-defendant was sentenced to probation. This is the second occasion on which the appeals court has ruled that Thurston must be given a severe sentence. On the first occasion, WLF sought and obtained a Supreme Court order vacating the severe sentence and directing the appeals court to take another look at the issues. The executive has once again asked the Supreme Court to review his case.