TITLE 18 - CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
PART I - CRIMES
CHAPTER 77 - PEONAGE, SLAVERY, AND TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS
Sec. 1584. Sale into involuntary servitude
(a) Whoever knowingly and willfully holds to involuntary
servitude or sells into any condition of involuntary servitude, any
other person for any term, or brings within the United States any
person so held, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not
more than 20 years, or both. If death results from the violation of
this section, or if the violation includes kidnapping or an attempt
to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or the attempt to commit
aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, the defendant shall
be fined under this title or imprisoned for any term of years or
life, or both.
(b) Whoever obstructs, attempts to obstruct, or in any way
interferes with or prevents the enforcement of this section, shall
be subject to the penalties described in subsection (a).
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 773; Pub. L. 103-322, title
XXXIII, Sec. 330016(1)(K), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147; Pub. L.
104-208, div. C, title II, Sec. 218(a), Sept. 30, 1996, 110 Stat.
3009-573; Pub. L. 106-386, div. A, Sec. 112(a)(1), Oct. 28, 2000,
114 Stat. 1486; Pub. L. 110-457, title II, Sec. 222(b)(2), Dec. 23,
2008, 122 Stat. 5068.)
HISTORICAL AND REVISION NOTES
Based on title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., Secs. 423, 446 (Mar. 4,
1909, ch. 321, Secs. 248, 271, 35 Stat. 1139, 1142).
Sections consolidated with changes of phraseology necessary to
Reference to persons causing or procuring was omitted as
unnecessary in view of definition of "principal" in section 2 of
Provisions as to holding of kidnapped persons were omitted as
superseded by section 1201 of this title and original text relating
to sale or holding to involuntary servitude retained.
Words "within the United States" were substituted for "within the
jurisdiction of the United States". (See section 5 of this title
defining "United States".)
The punishment provisions were derived from section 446 of title
18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., as more consistent with other sections of
The requirement of section 423 of title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., for
payment of one-half the fine "for the use of the person prosecuting
the indictment to effect" was omitted as meaningless. (See also
reviser's note under section 1585 of this title.)
Mandatory-punishment provisions were rephrased in the
Minor changes were made in phraseology.
2008 - Pub. L. 110-457 designated existing provisions as subsec.
(a) and added subsec. (b).
2000 - Pub. L. 106-386 substituted "20 years" for "10 years" and
inserted at end "If death results from the violation of this
section, or if the violation includes kidnapping or an attempt to
kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or the attempt to commit aggravated
sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, the defendant shall be fined
under this title or imprisoned for any term of years or life, or
1996 - Pub. L. 104-208 substituted "10 years" for "five years".
1994 - Pub. L. 103-322 substituted "fined under this title" for
"fined not more than $5,000".
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1996 AMENDMENT
Amendment by Pub. L. 104-208 applicable with respect to offenses
occurring on or after Sept. 30, 1996, see section 218(d) of Pub. L.
104-208, set out as a note under section 1581 of this title.
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