Prosecutions for June 2013

Referring Agency: Federal Bureau of Investigation

Number Latest Month 1,078
Percent Change from previous month -10.6
Percent Change from 1 year ago -1.9
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Including Magistrate Court) -3.5
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Excluding Magistrate Court) -5.8
Table 1: Criminal Prosecutions

The latest available data from the Justice Department show that during June 2013 the government reported 1078 new prosecutions for these matters. Those cases were referred by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), this number is down 10.6% over the previous month.

The comparisons of the number of defendants charged 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 2013 prosecutions of this type are compared with those of the same period in the previous year, the number of filings was only slightly down (-1.9 percent). Prosecutions over the past year are still much lower than they were five years ago. Overall, the data show that prosecutions of this type are down 3.5 percent from levels reported in 2008.

Plot of _FREQ_ by FYMONDT

Figure 1: Monthly trends in prosecutions

The leveling out from the levels five years ago in prosecutions for these matters is shown more clearly in Figure 1. The vertical bars in Figure 1 represent the number of prosecutions 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 prosecutions of these matters in June 2013 was for "Withheld by Govt from TRAC (FOIA challen", accounting for 28.8 percent of prosecutions. Prosecutions were also filed for "Drugs-Drug Trafficking" (8.6%), " Project Safe Childhood" (7.4%), "Weapons-Operation Triggerlock Major" (5.7%), "Bank Robbery" (5.4%), "Drugs-Organized Crime Task Force" (4.6%), "Violence-Other" (4.4%), "Other Criminal Prosecutions" (3.3%), "Organized Crime-Traditional Organization" (2.8%) , "Customs-Currency Violations" (2.6%), "Fraud-Health Care" (2%). See Figure 2.

Pie chart of progcatlabel

Figure 2: Specific types of prosecutions

Prosecutions in U.S. Magistrate Courts

Top Ranked Lead Charges

In June 2013, 176 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.

In the magistrate courts in June the most frequently cited lead charge was Title 21 U.S.C Section 846 involving the "Attempt and conspiracy". This was the lead charge for 16.5 percent of all magistrate filings in June.

Other frequently prosecuted lead charges include: "21 USC 841 - Drug Abuse Prevention & Control-Prohibited acts A" (9.7%), "18 USC 2113 - Bank robbery and incidental crimes" (8%), " 18 USC 1073 - Flight to Avoid Prosecution or Giving Testimony" (7.4%), "18 USC 1951 - Hobbs Act" (5.7%).

Prosecutions in U.S. District Courts

In June 2013, 902 defendants in new cases for these matters were charged in the U.S. District Courts. In addition during June there were an additional 130 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 June.

Top Ranked Lead Charges

Table 2 shows the top lead charges recorded in the prosecutions of matters filed in U.S. District Court during June 2013referred by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Lead Charge Count Rank 1yr ago 5yrs ago  
21 USC 846 - Attempt and conspiracy 73 1 1 3 More
21 USC 841 - Drug Abuse Prevention & Control-Prohibited acts A 72 2 2 1 More
18 USC 2113 - Bank robbery and incidental crimes 57 3 3 2 More
18 USC 2252 - Material involving sexual exploitation of minors 40 4 4 4 More
18 USC 922 - Firearms; Unlawful acts 39 5 5 8 More
18 USC 1343 - Fraud by wire, radio, or television 33 6 6 10 More
18 USC 1033 - Insurance Fraud 28 7 115 99 More
18 USC 1951 - Hobbs Act 28 7 7 12 More
18 USC 371 - Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud US 27 9 8 6 More
18 USC 1341 - Mail Fraud - Frauds and swindles 25 10 9 11 More
Table 2: Top charges filed

  • "Attempt and conspiracy" (Title 21 U.S.C Section 846) was the most frequent recorded lead charge. "Attempt and conspiracy" (Title 21 U.S.C Section 846) was ranked 1 a year ago, while it was ranked 3 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 1 five years ago.

  • Ranked 3rd was "Bank robbery and incidental crimes" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 2113. "Bank robbery and incidental crimes" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 2113 was ranked 3 a year ago, while it was ranked 2 five years ago.

Among these top ten lead charges, the one showing the greatest increase in prosecutions—up 1350 percent—compared to one year ago was Title 18 U.S.C Section 1033 that involves " Insurance Fraud ". This was the same statute that had the largest increase—625 %—when compared with five years ago.

Again among the top ten lead charges, the one showing the sharpest decline in prosecutions compared to one year ago—down 26.9 percent—was Attempt and conspiracy (Title 21 U.S.C Section 846 ). Compared to five years ago, the most significant decline in prosecutions— 39.8 percent—was for filings where the lead charge was " Bank robbery and incidental crimes " (Title 18 U.S.C Section 2113 ).

Top Ranked Judicial Districts

In June 2013 the Justice Department said the government brought 403.4 prosecutions for every ten million people in the United States.

Understandably, there is great variation in the per capita number of prosecutions that are filed in each of the nation's ninety-four federal judicial districts.

The districts registering the largest number of prosecutions per capita for these matters last month are shown in Table 3. Districts must have at least 5 prosecutions to receive a ranking.


Judicial District Percapita Count Rank 1yr ago 5yrs ago  
S Dakota 3,545 24 1 23 26 More
Ala, S 2,472 17 2 71 45 More
D. C. 2,201 11 3 16 55 More
Montana 1,723 14 4 34 17 More
Cal, S 1,230 33 5 3 37 More
Ken, E 1,218 22 6 43 39 More
Hawaii 1,204 13 7 68 75 More
Mo, W 1,170 30 8 53 49 More
Texas, E 951 28 9 22 33 More
Ohio, N 948 46 10 4 12 More
Table 3: Top 10 districts (per ten million people)

  • The District of South Dakota—with 3545 prosecutions as compared with 403.4 prosecutions per ten million population in the United States—was the most active during June 2013.

  • The Southern District of Alabama (Mobile) ranked 2nd.

  • District of Washington, D.C. (Washington) is now ranking 3rd.

Recent entrants to the top 10 list were Washington, D.C. (Washington), now ranked 3rd , and Eastern District of Texas (Tyler) at 9th In the same order, these districts ranked 16th and 22nd one year ago and 55th and 33rd five years ago.

The federal judicial district which showed the greatest growth in the rate of prosecutions compared to one year ago— 59.4 percent—was Hawaii . This was the same district that had the largest increase— 200 percent—when compared with five years ago.

In the last year, the judicial District Court recording the largest drop in the rate of prosecutions— 36.6 percent—was Northern District of Ohio (Cleveland).  But over the past five years, Southern District of Alabama (Mobile) showed the largest drop— 13.7 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 of this type during June 2013 are shown in Table 4.

Judge Count Rank 1yr ago 5yrs ago  
Marra, Kenneth A. Fla, S 28 1 57 20 More
Sammartino, Janis Lynn Cal, S 21 2 398 412 More
Polster, Dan A. Ohio, N 16 3 17 247 More
Schell, Richard A. Texas, E 13 4 13 40 More
Wake, Neil Vincent Arizona 12 5 67 40 More
Gaitan, Fernando J., Jr. Mo, W 12 5 462 412 More
Magnus-Stinson, Jane Elizabeth Ind, S 10 7 244 - More
Reeves, Danny C. Ken, E 10 7 147 85 More
Crone, Marcia A. Texas, E 10 7 40 71 More
DuBose, Kristi K. Ala, S 9 10 527 33 More
Hayes, William Q. Cal, S 9 10 204 589 More
Table 4: Top 10 judges

A total of 8 out of the "top ten" judges were in districts which were in the top ten with the largest number of filings per capita, while the remaining 3 judges were from other districts. (Because of ties, there were a total of 11 judges in the "top ten" rankings.)

  • Judge Kenneth A. Marra in the Southern District of Florida (Miami) ranked 1st with 28 defendants in cases.

  • Judge Janis Lynn Sammartino in the Southern District of California (San Diego) ranked 2nd with 21 defendants in cases.

  • Judge Dan A. Polster in the Northern District of Ohio (Cleveland) ranked 3rd with 16 defendants in cases.

Report Generated: August 20, 2013
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