National Internal Security/Terrorism Convictions for January 2013

Number Latest Month 20
Percent Change from previous month -16.7
Percent Change from 1 year ago -6.8
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Including Magistrate Court) -47.6
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Excluding Magistrate Court) -44.0
Table 1: Criminal National Internal Security/Terrorism Convictions

The latest available data from the Justice Department show that during January 2013 the government reported 20 new national internal security/terrorism convictions. According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), this number is down 16.7% over the previous month.

The comparisons of the number of defendants convicted for national internal security/terrorism-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 2013 convictions of this type are compared with those of the same period in the previous year, the number of convictions was down (-6.8 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 47.6 percent from levels reported in 2008.

Plot of _FREQ_ by FYMONDT

Figure 1: Monthly trends in national internal security/terrorism convictions

The decrease from the levels five years ago in national internal security/terrorism convictions for these matters is shown more clearly in Figure 1. The vertical bars in Figure 1 represent the number of national internal security/terrorism 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 national internal security/terrorism, cases were classified by prosecutors into more specific types.

Case types within national internal security/terrorism are

  • Matters Relating to National Internal Security

  • International Terrorism Incidents Which Impact on U.S.

  • Domestic Terrorism

  • Terrorism Related Hoaxes

  • Terrorist Financing

  • Export Enforcement Terrorism Related

  • Anti-Terrorism/Environmental

  • Anti-Terrorism/Identity Theft

  • Anti-Terrorism/Immigration

  • Anti-Terrorism/OCDETF Drugs

  • Anti-Terrorism/Non-OCDETF Drugs

  • Anti-Terrorism/Violent Crime

  • Anti-Terrorism/All Others

  • National Security/Critical Infrastructure Protection

The largest number of convictions of these matters in January 2013 was for "Terrorism-Domestic", accounting for 55 percent of convictions. Convictions were also filed for "Internal Security Offenses" (15%), "Terrorism-International" ( 10%), "Terrorism-Related Hoaxes" (10%), "Terrorism-Related Export Enforcement" (5%), "Terrorism-Related Financing" (5%). See Figure 2.

The lead investigative agency for national internal security/terrorism convictions in January 2013 was FBI accounting for 65 percent of convictions. Other agencies with substantial numbers of national internal security/terrorism convictions were: State Dep (10% ), ATF (5%), Commerce (5%), Justice Other (5%). See Figure 3.

Pie chart of progcatlabel

Figure 2: Specific types of convictions
Pie chart of agenrevgrp

Figure 3: Convictions by investigative agency

National Internal Security/Terrorism Convictions in U.S. Magistrate Courts

Top Ranked Lead Charges

In January 2013, no defendants in national internal security/terrorism 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.

National Internal Security/Terrorism Convictions in U.S. District Courts

In January 2013, 20 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 national internal security/terrorism matters filed in U.S. District Court during January 2013.

Lead Charge Count Rank  
18 USC 844 - Explosives - Importation and storage of explosives 4 1 More
18 USC 1038 - False Information and Hoaxes 3 2 More
18 USC 115 - Influencing, impeding, or retaliating against a Federal official 2 3 More
18 USC 1542 - False statement in application and use of passport 2 3 More
18 USC 2339B - Provide material support to foreign terrorist orgs 2 3 More
18 USC 371 - Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud US 1 6 More
18 USC 702 - Uniform of armed forces and Public Health Service 1 6 More
18 USC 871 - Threats against President and successors 1 6 More
18 USC 875 - Interstate Communications 1 6 More
18 USC 876 - Mailing threatening communications 1 6 More
18 USC 930 - Possession of firearms/dangerous weapons in federal facility 1 6 More
31 USC 5324 - Structuring transactions to evade reporting requir 1 6 More
Table 2: Top charges for convictions

  • "Explosives - Importation and storage of explosives" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 844) was the most frequent recorded lead charge.

  • Ranked 2nd in frequency was the lead charge "False Information and Hoaxes" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1038.

  • Ranked 3rd were "Influencing, impeding, or retaliating against a Federal official" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 115, "False statement in application and use of passport" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1542 and "Provide material support to foreign terrorist orgs" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 2339.

Top Ranked Judicial Districts

In January 2013 the Justice Department said the government obtained 7.8 national internal security/terrorism convictions for every ten million people in the United States.

Understandably, there is great variation in the number of national internal security/terrorism 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  
Alaska 2 1 More
Fla, M 2 1 More
N. J. 2 1 More
N. Y., E 2 1 More
Cal, N 1 5 More
Colorado 1 5 More
Fla, S 1 5 More
Ill, C 1 5 More
Mass 1 5 More
Mich, W 1 5 More
N Mexico 1 5 More
Nevada 1 5 More
Ohio, N 1 5 More
Texas, S 1 5 More
Utah 1 5 More
Wisc, W 1 5 More
Table 3: Top 10 districts

  • The District of Alaska, Middle District of Florida (Tampa), District of New Jersey and Eastern District of New York (Brooklyn)—with 2 convictions—were the most active during January 2013.

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 national internal security/terrorism crime cases resulting in convictions of this type during January 2013 are shown in Table 4.

Judge Count Rank  
Bryan, Robert Jensen Alaska 2 1 More
Breyer, Charles R. Cal, N 1 2 More
Daniel, Wiley Young Colorado 1 2 More
Howard, Marcia Morales Fla, M 1 2 More
Smith, Thomas B. Fla, M 1 2 More
Ryskamp, Kenneth L. Fla, S 1 2 More
McCuskey, Michael Patrick Ill, C 1 2 More
Ponsor, Michael Adrian Mass 1 2 More
Maloney, Paul Lewis Mich, W 1 2 More
Brack, Robert C. N Mexico 1 2 More
Chesler, Stanley R. N. J. 1 2 More
Martini, William J. N. J. 1 2 More
Block, Frederic N. Y., E 1 2 More
Gleeson, John N. Y., E 1 2 More
Mahan, James C. Nevada 1 2 More
Dowd, David Dudley, Jr. Ohio, N 1 2 More
Hinojosa, Ricardo H. Texas, S 1 2 More
Campbell, Tena Utah 1 2 More
Conley, William Martin Wisc, W 1 2 More
Table 4: Top 10 judges

All 19 of the "top ten" judges were in districts which were in the top ten with the largest number of national internal security/terrorism convictions . (Because of ties, there were a total of 19 judges in the "top ten" rankings.)

  • Judge Robert Jensen Bryan in the District of Alaska ranked 1st with 2 convicted in national internal security/terrorism convictions.

  • Judges Charles R. Breyer in the Northern District of California (San Francisco), Wiley Young Daniel in the District of Colorado, Marcia Morales Howard in the Middle District of Florida (Tampa), Thomas B. Smith in the Middle District of Florida (Tampa), Kenneth L. Ryskamp in the Southern District of Florida (Miami), Michael Patrick McCuskey in the Central District of Illinois (Springfield), Michael Adrian Ponsor in the District of Massachusetts, Paul Lewis Maloney in the Western District of Michigan (Gr ranked 2nd with 1 convicted in national internal security/terrorism convictions.

Report Generated: March 5, 2013
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