Official Corruption Convictions for January 2014

Number Latest Month 46
Percent Change from previous month 15.0
Percent Change from 1 year ago 4.2
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Including Magistrate Court) 10.0
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Excluding Magistrate Court) 11.7
Table 1: Criminal Official Corruption Convictions

The latest available data from the Justice Department show that during January 2014 the government reported 46 new official corruption convictions. According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), this number is up 15% over the previous month.

The comparisons of the number of defendants convicted for official corruption-related offenses are based on case-by-case information obtained by TRAC under the Freedom of Information Act from the Executive Office for United States Attorneys. (See Table 1)

When monthly 2014 convictions of this type are compared with those of the same period in the previous year, the number of convictions was up (4.2 percent). Convictions over the past year are still much higher than they were five years ago. Overall, the data show that convictions of this type are up 10 percent from levels reported in 2009.

Plot of _FREQ_ by FYMONDT

Figure 1: Monthly trends in official corruption convictions

The increase from the levels five years ago in official corruption convictions for these matters is shown more clearly in Figure 1. The vertical bars in Figure 1 represent the number of official corruption convictions of this type recorded on a month-to-month basis. Where a prosecution was initially filed in U.S. Magistrate Court and then transferred to the U.S. District Court, the magistrate filing date was used since this provides an earlier indicator of actual trends. The superimposed line on the bars plots the six-month moving average so that natural fluctuations are smoothed out. The one and five-year rates of change in Table 1 and in the sections that follow are all based upon this six-month moving average. To view trends year-by-year rather than month-by-month, see TRAC's annual report series for a broader picture.

Within the broad category of official corruption, cases were classified by prosecutors into more specific types.

Case types within official corruption are

  • Federal Corruption - Procurement

  • Federal Corruption - Program

  • Federal Corruption - Law Enforcement

  • Federal Corruption - Other

  • State Corruption

  • Local Corruption

  • Other Public Corruption

The largest number of convictions of these matters in January 2014 was for "Corruption(Govt Off)-Local", accounting for 28.3 percent of convictions. Convictions were also filed for "Corruption(Govt Off)-Fed Other" (15.2%), " Corruption(Govt Off)-Fed Procurement" (13%), "Corruption(Govt Off)-Fed Program" (13%), "Corruption(Govt Off)-Other" (13%), "Corruption(Govt Off)-Fed Law Enforcement" (10.9%), "Corruption(Govt Off)-State" (6.5%). See Figure 2.

The lead investigative agency for official corruption convictions in January 2014 was FBI accounting for 48 percent of convictions. Other agencies with substantial numbers of official corruption convictions were: DHS (17% ), Postal (9%), HUD (4%). See Figure 3.

Pie chart of progcatlabel

Figure 2: Specific types of convictions
Pie chart of agenrevgrp

Figure 3: Convictions by investigative agency

Official Corruption Convictions in U.S. Magistrate Courts

Top Ranked Lead Charges

In January 2014, no defendants in official corruption cases for these matters were filed in U.S. Magistrate Courts. These courts handle less serious misdemeanor cases, including what are called "petty offenses." In addition, complaints are sometimes filed in the magistrate courts before an indictment or information is entered. In these cases, the matter starts in the magistrate courts and later moves to the district court where subsequent proceedings take place.

Official Corruption Convictions in U.S. District Courts

In January 2014, 46 defendants in new cases for these matters were charged in the U.S. District Courts. In addition during January there were an additional 0 defendants whose cases moved from the magistrate courts to the U.S. district courts after an indictment or information was filed. The sections which follow cover both sets of cases and therefore cover all matters filed in district court during January.

Top Ranked Lead Charges

Table 2 shows the top lead charges recorded in the convictions of official corruption matters filed in U.S. District Court during January 2014.

Lead Charge Count Rank  
18 USC 666 - Theft or bribery in programs receiving Fed funds 12 1 More
18 USC 1341 - Mail Fraud - Frauds and swindles 4 2 More
18 USC 1343 - Fraud by wire, radio, or television 4 2 More
18 USC 641 - Public money, property or records 3 4 More
18 USC 1791 - Providing or possessing contraband in prison 3 4 More
18 USC 1951 - Hobbs Act 3 4 More
18 USC 1040 - Fraud in connection with major disaster or emergency benefits 2 7 More
18 USC 1709 - Theft of mail matter by officer or employee 2 7 More
18 USC 1956 - Laundering of monetary instruments 2 7 More
08 USC 1326 - Reentry of deported alien 1 10 More
18 USC 201 - Bribery of public officials and witnesses 1 10 More
18 USC 286 - Conspiracy to defraud the Government claims 1 10 More
18 USC 872 - Extortion by officers or employees of US 1 10 More
18 USC 912 - False personification - Officer or employee of US 1 10 More
18 USC 1001 - Fraud/false statements or entries generally 1 10 More
18 USC 1344 - Bank Fraud 1 10 More
18 USC 1346 - Scheme or artifice to defraud 1 10 More
18 USC 1348 - Securities Fraud 1 10 More
18 USC 1349 - Mail Fraud - Attempt and Conspiracy 1 10 More
21 USC 846 - Attempt and conspiracy 1 10 More
Table 2: Top charges for convictions

  • "Theft or bribery in programs receiving Fed funds" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 666) was the most frequent recorded lead charge.

  • Ranked 2nd in frequency were the lead charges "Mail Fraud - Frauds and swindles" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1341 and "Fraud by wire, radio, or television" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1343.

Top Ranked Judicial Districts

In January 2014 the Justice Department said the government obtained 17.6 official corruption convictions for every ten million people in the United States.

Understandably, there is great variation in the number of official corruption convictions in each of the nation's ninety-four federal judicial districts.

The districts registering the largest number of convictions of this type last month are shown in Table 3.

Judicial District Count Rank  
Mass 4 1 More
Texas, S 3 2 More
Cal, E 2 3 More
Colorado 2 3 More
Fla, S 2 3 More
Ga, N 2 3 More
Ind, S 2 3 More
Mo, W 2 3 More
Montana 2 3 More
Texas, N 2 3 More
Texas, W 2 3 More
Table 3: Top 10 districts

  • The District of Massachusetts—with 4 convictions—was the most active during January 2014.

  • The Southern District of Texas (Houston) ranked 2nd.

  • Eastern District of California (Sacramento), District of Colorado, Southern District of Florida (Miami), Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta), Southern District of Indiana (Indianapolis), Western District of Missouri (Kansas City), District of Montana, N orthern District of Texas (Fort Worth) and Western District of Texas (San Antonio) are now ranking 3rd.

Top Ranked District Judges

At any one time, there are about 680 federal District Court judges working in the United States. The judges recorded with the largest number of new official corruption crime cases resulting in convictions of this type during January 2014 are shown in Table 4.

Judge Count Rank  
Head, Hayden Wilson, Jr. Texas, S 2 1 More
Johnson, Inge Prytz Ala, N 1 2 More
Burrell, Garland Ellis, Jr. Cal, E 1 2 More
Karlton, Lawrence K. Cal, E 1 2 More
Bencivengo, Cathy Ann Cal, S 1 2 More
Blackburn, Robert E. Colorado 1 2 More
Brimmer, Philip A. Colorado 1 2 More
Sullivan, Emmet G. D. C. 1 2 More
Andrews, Richard Gibson Delaware 1 2 More
Chappell, Sheri Polster Fla, M 1 2 More
Zloch, William J. Fla, S 1 2 More
Rosenbaum, Robin S. Fla, S 1 2 More
Batten, Timothy C., Sr. Ga, N 1 2 More
Jones, Steve CarMichael Ga, N 1 2 More
Valdez, Maria Ill, N 1 2 More
Barker, Sarah Evans Ind, S 1 2 More
Magnus-Stinson, Jane Elizabeth Ind, S 1 2 More
Van Tatenhove, Gregory Frederick Ken, E 1 2 More
Barbier, Carl J. La, E 1 2 More
Motz, J. Frederick Maryland 1 2 More
O'Toole, George A., Jr. Mass 1 2 More
Tauro, Joseph Louis Mass 1 2 More
Wolf, Mark Lawrence Mass 1 2 More
Zobel, Rya Weickert Mass 1 2 More
Cook, Julian Abele, Jr. Mich, E 1 2 More
Wingate, Henry Travillion Miss, S 1 2 More
Jackson, Carol E. Mo, E 1 2 More
Dawson, Robert Toombs Mo, W 1 2 More
Christensen, Dana Lewis Montana 1 2 More
Flanagan, Louise W. N Car, E 1 2 More
Salas, Esther N. J. 1 2 More
Crotty, Paul Austin N. Y., S 1 2 More
Lioi, Sara Elizabeth Ohio, N 1 2 More
Mariani, Robert David Penn, M 1 2 More
Garcia-Gregory, Jay A. Puer Rico 1 2 More
McConnell, John James, Jr. R. I. 1 2 More
Cummings, Samuel Ray Texas, N 1 2 More
Robinson, Mary Lou Texas, N 1 2 More
Lake, Simeon Timothy, III Texas, S 1 2 More
Junell, Robert A. Texas, W 1 2 More
Montalvo, Frank Texas, W 1 2 More
Davis, Mark Steven Virg, E 1 2 More
Copenhaver, John Thomas, Jr. W Virg, S 1 2 More
Table 4: Top 10 judges

A total of 22 out of the "top ten" judges were in districts which were in the top ten with the largest number of official corruption convictions , while the remaining 21 judges were from other districts. (Because of ties, there were a total of 43 judges in the "top ten" rankings.)

  • Judge Hayden Wilson Head, Jr. in the Southern District of Texas (Houston) ranked 1st with 2 convicted in official corruption convictions.

  • Judges Inge Prytz Johnson in the Northern District of Alabama (Birmingham), Garland Ellis Burrell, Jr. in the Eastern District of California (Sacramento), Lawrence K. Karlton in the Eastern District of California (Sacramento), Cathy Ann Bencivengo in the Southern District of California (San Diego), Robert E. Blackburn in the District of Colorado, Philip A. Brimmer in the District of Colorado, Emmet G. Sullivan in the District of Washington, D.C. (Washington), Richard Gibson Andrews in the District of D ranked 2nd with 1 convicted in official corruption convictions.

Report Generated: March 17, 2014
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