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The Supreme Court asked federal courts Monday to reconsider sentences for hundreds of defendants who contend they were wrongly punished under a sentencing system the Court declared unconstitutional earlier this month.

Justices instructed the lower courts to review more than 400 appeals from defendants sentenced for crimes ranging from drug possession to theft and securities fraud. They had argued that judges had improperly boosted their sentences based on factors that had not come before the jury during trial.

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