Federal Mandatory Minimum Sentencing: The 18 U.S.C. 924(c) Tack-On in Cases Involving Drugs or Violence [September 16, 2015] [open pdf - 679KB]
"Section 924(c) requires the imposition of one of a series of mandatory minimum terms of imprisonment upon conviction for misconduct involving the firearm and the commission of a federal crime of violence or a federal drug trafficking offense. The terms vary according to the type of firearm used, the manner of the firearm's involvement, and whether the conviction involves a single, first-time offense. Liability extends to co-conspirators and to those who aid or abet in the commission of a violation of the section. If a machine gun, silencer, short barreled rifle, short barreled shotgun, or body armor is involved, the offense is punished more severely. If the firearm is brandished or discharged, the offense is punished more severely. Repeat offenders are likewise punished more severely. Twenty-five-year mandatory minimum terms for multiple offenses must be served consecutively. The mandatory minimum terms range from imprisonment for five years to imprisonment for life; consecutive mandatory minimum terms may exceed 100 years. In each case the maximum term is life imprisonment."
CRS Report for Congress, R41412
Federation of American Scientists: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/index.html