Convictions for October 2012
Referring Agency: Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
Table 1: Criminal Convictions
The latest available data from the Justice Department show that during October 2012 the government reported 641 new convictions for these matters. Those cases were referred by the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), this number is down 22.2% over the previous month.
The comparisons of the number of defendants convicted 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 2012 convictions of this type are compared with those of the same period in
the previous year, the number of convictions was only slightly up (1.4 percent).
Convictions over the past year are still much lower than they were five years ago.
Overall, the data show that convictions of this type are down 5.5 percent from levels reported in 2007.
Figure 1: Monthly trends in convictions
The leveling out from the levels five years ago in convictions for these matters is shown more clearly in Figure 1.
The vertical bars in Figure 1
represent the number of 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.
Cases were classified by prosecutors into more specific types.
The largest number of convictions of these matters in October 2012 was for "Weapons-Operation Triggerlock Major", accounting for 62.1 percent of convictions. Convictions were also filed for "Withheld by Govt from TRAC (FOIA challen" (
12.2%), "Drugs-Drug Trafficking" (10.3%), "Drugs-Organized Crime Task Force" (9.8%), "Violence-Other" (3.4%).
See Figure 2.
Figure 2: Specific types of convictions
Convictions in U.S. Magistrate Courts
Top Ranked Lead Charges
In October 2012, no defendants
in 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.
Convictions in U.S. District Courts
In October 2012, 641 defendants in new cases
for these matters were charged in the U.S. District Courts. In addition during October 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 October.
Top Ranked Lead Charges
Table 2 shows the top lead charges recorded in the convictions of matters
filed in U.S. District Court during October 2012referred by the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Table 2: Top charges for convictions
"Firearms; Unlawful acts" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 922) was the most frequent recorded lead charge.
"Firearms; Unlawful acts" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 922) was ranked 1 a year ago, while it was ranked 1 five years ago.
Ranked 2nd in frequency was the lead charge "Drug Abuse Prevention & Control-Prohibited acts A" under Title 21 U.S.C Section 841.
"Drug Abuse Prevention & Control-Prohibited acts A" under Title 21 U.S.C Section 841 was ranked 2 a year ago, while it was ranked 2 five years ago.
Ranked 3rd was "Attempt and conspiracy" under Title 21 U.S.C Section 846.
"Attempt and conspiracy" under Title 21 U.S.C Section 846 was ranked 3 a year ago, while it was ranked 3 five years ago.
Among these top ten lead charges, the one showing the greatest
increase in convictions—up 266.7 percent—compared to one year ago was Title 18 U.S.C Section 1962
that involves " RICO - prohibited activities
This was the same statute that had the largest increase—312.5 %—when compared with five years ago.
Again among the top ten lead charges, the one showing the sharpest
decline in convictions compared to one year ago—down 56.8 percent—was
Explosives - Importation and storage of explosives
(Title 18 U.S.C Section 844 ).
Compared to five years ago, the most significant decline in convictions— 46.8 percent—was
for convictions where the lead charge was " Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud US
" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 371
Top Ranked Judicial Districts
In October 2012 the Justice Department said the government obtained 250.5 convictions for every ten million people in the United States.
Understandably, there is great variation in the per capita number of convictions in each of the nation's ninety-four federal judicial districts.
The districts registering the
largest number of convictions per capita for these matters last month are shown in Table 3.
Districts must have at least 5 convictions to receive a ranking.
Table 3: Top 10 districts (per ten million people)
The Eastern District of Oklahoma (Muskogee)—with 1804 convictions as compared with 250.5 convictions per ten million population in the United States—was the most active during October 2012.
The Western District of Tennessee (Memphis) ranked 2nd.
The Western District of Tennessee (Memphis) was ranked 9 a year ago.
Northern District of Oklahoma (Tulsa) is now ranking 3rd.
Recent entrants to the top 10 list were
Middle District of North Carolina (Greensboro), now ranked
, and Western District of Virginia (Roanoke)
In the same order, these districts ranked 11th and 25th one year ago and 14th and 7th five years ago.
The federal judicial district which showed the greatest growth
in the rate of convictions compared to one year ago— 166.7 percent—was
Compared to five years ago, the district with the largest growth— 200 percent—was
In the last year, the judicial District Court recording the
largest drop in the rate of convictions— 21.2 percent—was
But over the past five years,
Northern District of Oklahoma (Tulsa)
showed the largest drop— 31.4 percent.
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 crime cases resulting in convictions of this type
during October 2012 are shown in Table 4.
A total of 9 out of the "top ten" judges were in districts which were in the top ten with the largest number of convictions per capita, while the remaining 12 judges were from other districts.
(Because of ties, there were a total of 21 judges in the "top ten" rankings.)
Judge William P. Dimitrouleas in the Southern District of Florida (Miami) ranked 1st with 14 convicted in convictions.
Judges Susan Richard Nelson in the District of Minnesota, Harry Sandlin Mattice, Jr. in the Eastern District of Tennessee (Knoxville) and James Parker Jones in the Western District of Virginia (Roanoke) ranked 2nd with 9
convicted in convictions.
Report Generated: February 6, 2013