National Internal Security/Terrorism Convictions for September 2013

Number Latest Month 29
Percent Change from previous month 107.1
Percent Change from 1 year ago 22.4
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Including Magistrate Court) -23.8
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Excluding Magistrate Court) -20.0
Table 1: Criminal National Internal Security/Terrorism Convictions

The latest available data from the Justice Department show that during September 2013 the government reported 29 new national internal security/terrorism convictions. According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), this number is up 107.1% 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 up (22.4 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 23.8 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 September 2013 was for "Terrorism-Domestic", accounting for 51.7 percent of convictions. Convictions were also filed for "Terrorism-Critical Infrastructure Protec" (34.5%), " Terrorism-Related Hoaxes" (10.3%), "Internal Security Offenses" (3.4%). See Figure 2.

The lead investigative agency for national internal security/terrorism convictions in September 2013 was FBI accounting for 69 percent of convictions. Other agencies with substantial numbers of national internal security/terrorism convictions were: DHS (14% ), DEA (3%), Postal (3%). 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 September 2013, 1 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.

In the magistrate courts in September the most frequently cited lead charge was Title 31 U.S.C Section 5324 involving the "Structuring transactions to evade reporting requir". This was the lead charge for 100 percent of all magistrate convictions in September.

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

In September 2013, 28 defendants in new cases for these matters were charged in the U.S. District Courts. In addition during September 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 September.

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 September 2013.

Lead Charge Count Rank  
18 USC 371 - Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud US 3 1 More
18 USC 844 - Explosives - Importation and storage of explosives 3 1 More
18 USC 1038 - False Information and Hoaxes 3 1 More
18 USC 32 - Destruction of aircraft or aircraft facilities 2 4 More
18 USC 876 - Mailing threatening communications 2 4 More
18 USC 1546 - Fraud and misuse of visas, permits, and other documents 2 4 More
21 USC 846 - Attempt and conspiracy 2 4 More
18 USC 111 - Assaulting, resisting, impeding certain officers 1 8 More
18 USC 505 - Seals of courts; signatures of judges or court off 1 8 More
18 USC 915 - False personification - diplomats, etc. 1 8 More
18 USC 1028 - Fraud and related activity - id documents 1 8 More
18 USC 1343 - Fraud by wire, radio, or television 1 8 More
18 USC 2332a - Use of weapons of mass destruction 1 8 More
21 USC 841 - Drug Abuse Prevention & Control-Prohibited acts A 1 8 More
49 USC 46502 - Air Privacy 1 8 More
49 USC 46506 - Application of Criminal Laws to Acts on Aircraft 1 8 More
50 USC 1701 - War and National Defense - Unusual and extraordinary threat 1 8 More
Table 2: Top charges for convictions

  • "Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud US" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 371), "Explosives - Importation and storage of explosives" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 844) and "False Information and Hoaxes" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 1038) were the most frequent recorded lead charges.

Top Ranked Judicial Districts

In September 2013 the Justice Department said the government obtained 10.9 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  
Cal, C 5 1 More
N. J. 3 2 More
La, E 2 3 More
Mo, E 2 3 More
Utah 2 3 More
Wash, W 2 3 More
Ark, W 1 7 More
Fla, N 1 7 More
Ind, S 1 7 More
N Car, W 1 7 More
Nebraska 1 7 More
Nevada 1 7 More
Okla, N 1 7 More
Puer Rico 1 7 More
Tenn, E 1 7 More
Texas, N 1 7 More
Texas, S 1 7 More
Wash, E 1 7 More
Table 3: Top 10 districts

  • The Central District of California (Los Angeles)—with 5 convictions—was the most active during September 2013.

  • The District of New Jersey ranked 2nd.

  • Eastern District of Louisiana (New Orleans), Eastern District of Missouri (St. Louis), District of Utah and Western District of Washington (Seattle) 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 national internal security/terrorism crime cases resulting in convictions of this type during September 2013 are shown in Table 4.

Judge Count Rank  
Pisano, Joel A. N. J. 3 1 More
Holmes, J[ames] Leon Ark, W 1 2 More
Real, Manuel Lawrence Cal, C 1 2 More
Snyder, Christina A. Cal, C 1 2 More
Fischer, Dale S. Cal, C 1 2 More
Hinkle, Robert Lewis Fla, N 1 2 More
Lawrence, William T. Ind, S 1 2 More
Fallon, Eldon E. La, E 1 2 More
Feldman, Martin Leach-Cross La, E 1 2 More
Hamilton, Jean Constance Mo, E 1 2 More
Sippel, Rodney W. Mo, E 1 2 More
Cogburn, Max Oliver, Jr. N Car, W 1 2 More
Gerrard, John Melvin Nebraska 1 2 More
Navarro, Gloria Maria Nevada 1 2 More
Fuste, Jose Antonio Puer Rico 1 2 More
Jordan, Robert Leon Tenn, E 1 2 More
O'Connor, Reed Charles Texas, N 1 2 More
Hughes, Lynn Nettleton Texas, S 1 2 More
Nuffer, David Utah 1 2 More
Rice, Thomas Owen Wash, E 1 2 More
Lasnik, Robert S. Wash, W 1 2 More
Zilly, Thomas Samuel Wash, W 1 2 More
Table 4: Top 10 judges

All 22 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 22 judges in the "top ten" rankings.)

  • Judge Joel A. Pisano in the District of New Jersey ranked 1st with 3 convicted in national internal security/terrorism convictions.

  • Judges J[ames] Leon Holmes in the Western District of Arkansas (Fort Smith), Manuel Lawrence Real in the Central District of California (Los Angeles), Christina A. Snyder in the Central District of California (Los Angeles), Dale S. Fischer in the Central District of California (Los Angeles), Robert Lewis Hinkle in the Northern District of Florida (Pensacola), William T. Lawrence in the Southern District of Indiana (Indianapolis), Eldon E. Fallon in the Eastern District of Louisiana (New Orleans), Marti ranked 2nd with 1 convicted in national internal security/terrorism convictions.

Report Generated: November 25, 2013
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