7/17/2008

Revisiting the Explosive Growth of Federal Crimes

“Measuring the growth in the number of activities considered federal crimes is challenging. Ideally, one compares counts of federal crimes taken at different times and employing consistent criteria to determine what constitutes a federal crime. Obtaining compara­ble data, however, is almost impossible. Nonetheless, a careful survey of laws enacted by Congress does permit reasonable estimation of the number of federal criminal offenses.”

“This report follows from other attempts to count the number of federal criminal offenses or to measure their growth. The most complete count of federal crimes, done by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) in the early 1980s, put the number at 3,000. A 1998 report by a task force of the American Bar Association relied on the DOJ figure and other data to measure the growth of federal criminal law but did not itself actu­ally provide a count of federal crimes.[1] In a 2004 Fed­eralist Society monograph building on the DOJ and ABA reports, I counted new federal crimes enacted following the point at which the ABA report finished its data collection at the close of 1996. That report estimates that there were 4,000 federal crimes at the start of 2000.[2] This report updates that total through 2007, finding 452 additional crimes created since 2007, for a total of at least 4,450 federal crimes.[3]”

John S. Baker, Jr has compiled a report for the Heritage Foundation http://www.heritage.org/Research/LegalIssues/lm26.cfm

[Source: Vidz King - Posted by WAR ON YOU]

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