Defining the Problem and Scope of Over-Criminalization and Over-Federalization: Hearing Before the Over-Criminalization Task Force of 2013 of the Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, One Hundred Thirteenth Congress, First Session, June 14, 2013   [open pdf - 914KB]

This is the June 14, 2013 hearing, "Defining the Problem and Scope of Over-Criminalization and Over-Federalization," before the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary. From the opening statement of F. James Sensenbrenner: "The objective of today's hearing is to define the scope of the over-criminalization problem. That in and of itself is a complex and challenging task. At present, the United States Code contains approximately 4,500 Federal crimes, as well as innumerable regulations and rules, many of which carry severe fines and jail time for violations, and there is no indication that Congress is slowing down. Indeed, over the past three decades, Congress has created an average of 500 new crimes per decade, and the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts estimate that over 80,000 defendants are sentenced in Federal courts annually. Many of the crimes on the books are antiquated or redundant, some are poorly drafted, and some have not been used in the last 30 years. Moreover, many of the regulatory crimes in the code lack any 'mens rea', the attempt to commit a crime. That means that an American citizen may not only be unaware that he is committing a crime, but he may be held strictly liable for his conduct." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: F. James Sensenbrennber, Robert C. "Bobby" Scott, Bob Goodlatte, George Terwilliger, III, John G. Malcolm, William N. Shepherd, John Conyers, Jr., Steven Cohen, and Steven D. Benjamin.

Report Number:
Serial No. 113-44
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Government Printing Office: http://www.gpo.gov/
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