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CITE

    31 USC Sec. 333                                             01/05/2009

EXPCITE

    TITLE 31 - MONEY AND FINANCE
    SUBTITLE I - GENERAL
    CHAPTER 3 - DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY
    SUBCHAPTER II - ADMINISTRATIVE

HEAD

    Sec. 333. Prohibition of misuse of Department of the Treasury
      names, symbols, etc.

STATUTE

      (a) General Rule. - No person may use, in connection with, or as
    a part of, any advertisement, solicitation, business activity, or
    product, whether alone or with other words, letters, symbols, or
    emblems -
        (1) the words "Department of the Treasury", or the name of any
      service, bureau, office, or other subdivision of the Department
      of the Treasury,
        (2) the titles "Secretary of the Treasury" or "Treasurer of the
      United States" or the title of any other officer or employee of
      the Department of the Treasury,
        (3) the abbreviations or initials of any entity referred to in
      paragraph (1),
        (4) the words "United States Savings Bond" or the name of any
      other obligation issued by the Department of the Treasury,
        (5) any symbol or emblem of an entity referred to in paragraph
      (1) (including the design of any envelope or stationary used by
      such an entity), and
        (6) any colorable imitation of any such words, titles,
      abbreviations, initials, symbols, or emblems,
    in a manner which could reasonably be interpreted or construed as
    conveying the false impression that such advertisement,
    solicitation, business activity, or product is in any manner
    approved, endorsed, sponsored, or authorized by, or associated
    with, the Department of the Treasury or any entity referred to in
    paragraph (1) or any officer or employee thereof.
      (b) Treatment of Disclaimers. - Any determination of whether a
    person has violated the provisions of subsection (a) shall be made
    without regard to any use of a disclaimer of affiliation with the
    United States Government or any particular agency or
    instrumentality thereof.
      (c) Civil Penalty. -
        (1) In general. - The Secretary of the Treasury may impose a
      civil penalty on any person who violates the provisions of
      subsection (a).
        (2) Amount of penalty. - The amount of the civil penalty
      imposed by paragraph (1) shall not exceed $5,000 for each use of
      any material in violation of subsection (a). If such use is in a
      broadcast or telecast, the preceding sentence shall be applied by
      substituting "$25,000" for "$5,000".
        (3) Time limitations. -
          (A) Assessments. - The Secretary of the Treasury may assess
        any civil penalty under paragraph (1) at any time before the
        end of the 3-year period beginning on the date of the violation
        with respect to which such penalty is imposed.
          (B) Civil action. - The Secretary of the Treasury may
        commence a civil action to recover any penalty imposed under
        this subsection at any time before the end of the 2-year period
        beginning on the date on which such penalty was assessed.
        (4) Coordination with subsection (d). - No penalty may be
      assessed under this subsection with respect to any violation
      after a criminal proceeding with respect to such violation has
      been commenced under subsection (d).
      (d) Criminal Penalty. -
        (1) In general. - If any person knowingly violates subsection
      (a), such person shall, upon conviction thereof, be fined not
      more than $10,000 for each such use or imprisoned not more than 1
      year, or both. If such use is in a broadcast or telecast, the
      preceding sentence shall be applied by substituting "$50,000" for
      "$10,000".
        (2) Time limitations. - No person may be prosecuted, tried, or
      punished under paragraph (1) for any violation of subsection (a)
      unless the indictment is found or the information instituted
      during the 3-year period beginning on the date of the violation.
        (3) Coordination with subsection (c). - No criminal proceeding
      may be commenced under this subsection with respect to any
      violation if a civil penalty has previously been assessed under
      subsection (c) with respect to such violation.

SOURCE

    (Added Pub. L. 103-296, title III, Sec. 312(l)(1), Aug. 15, 1994,
    108 Stat. 1528.)

EFFECTIVE DATE

      Section 312(m) of Pub. L. 103-296 provided that:
      "(1) In general. - Except as provided in paragraph (2), the
    amendments made by this section [enacting this section and amending
    section 1320b-10 of Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare] shall
    apply with respect to violations occurring after March 31, 1995.
      "(2) Prohibition of misuse of department of the treasury names,
    symbols, etc. - Subsection (l)(3) [enacting provisions set out
    below] shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act
    [Aug. 15, 1994], and the amendments made by paragraphs (1) and (2)
    of subsection (l) [enacting this section] shall apply with respect
    to violations occurring after such date."
                    REPORT ON IMPLEMENTATION OF SECTION
      Section 312(l)(3) of Pub. L. 103-296 provided that: "Not later
    than May 1, 1996, the Secretary of the Treasury shall submit a
    report to the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of
    Representatives and the Committee on Finance of the Senate on the
    implementation of the amendments made by this section [enacting
    this section and amending section 1320b-10 of Title 42, The Public
    Health and Welfare]. Such report shall include the number of cases
    in which the Secretary has notified persons of violations of
    section 333 of title 31, United States Code (as added by subsection
    (a)[(l)(1)]), the number of prosecutions commenced under such
    section, and the total amount of the penalties collected in such
    prosecutions."
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