Government Regulatory Convictions for August 2023

Number Latest Month 54
Percent Change from previous month -15.6
Percent Change from 1 year ago -21.1
Percent Change from 5 years ago
(Including Magistrate Court)
Percent Change from 5 years ago
(Excluding Magistrate Court)
Table 1. Criminal Government Regulatory Convictions

The latest available data from the Justice Department show that during August 2023 the government reported 54 new government regulatory convictions. According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), this number is down 15.6 percent over the previous month.

The comparisons of the number of defendants convicted for government regulatory-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 2023 convictions of this type are compared with those of the same period in the previous year, the number of convictions was down (-21.1%). 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 52.3 percent from levels reported in 2018.

The dip in these cases is partly related to increases in the matters filed in U.S. Magistrate Courts. If magistrate cases are excluded and only Federal District Court cases are counted, the overall decrease in government regulatory convictions is 24.3 percent instead of 52.3 percent. The evidence suggests that part of the difference may be the result of improvements in the recording of the magistrate cases by the Justice Department.

Figure 1. Monthly Trends in Government Regulatory Convictions

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

Case types within government regulatory are

  • Counterfeiting and Forgery

  • Customs Violations - Duty

  • Customs Violations - Currency

  • Energy Pricing and Related Fraud

  • Health and Safety Violations - Employees

  • Health and Safety Violations - General Public

  • Copyright Violations

  • Trafficking in Contraband Cigarettes

  • Energy Violations - Nuclear Waste Issues

  • Money Laundering/Structuring (Narcotics)

  • Money Laundering/Structuring (Other)

  • Export Enforcement General

  • Other Government Regulatory Offenses

The largest number of convictions of these matters in August 2023 was for "Money Laundering-Other", accounting for 29.6 percent of convictions. Convictions were also filed for "Money Laundering-Drug" (18.5%), "Counterfeiting and Forgery" (16.7%), "Other-Regulatory Offenses" (16.7%), "Customs-Currency Violations" (11.1%), "Customs-Duty Violations" (5.6%). See Figure 2.

The lead investigative agency for government regulatory convictions in August 2023 was FBI accounting for 26 percent of convictions. Other agencies with substantial numbers of government regulatory convictions were: DHS (22% ), SecServ (15%), DEA (6%), Justice Other (6%). See Figure 3.

Pie chart of progcatlabel

Figure 2. Specific Types of Convictions
Pie chart of agenrevgrp

Figure 3. Convictions by Investigative Agency

Government Regulatory Convictions in U.S. Magistrate Courts

Top Ranked Lead Charges

In August 2023, 5 defendants in government regulatory cases for these matters were convicted 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 August the most frequently cited lead charge was Title U.S.C Section involving "Other US Code Section". This was the lead charge for 20 percent of all magistrate convictions in August.

Government Regulatory Convictions in U.S. District Courts

In August 2023, 49 defendants in new cases for these matters were charged in the U.S. District Courts. In addition during August 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 August.

Top Ranked Lead Charges

Table 2 shows the top lead charges recorded in the convictions of government regulatory matters filed in U.S. District Court during August 2023.

Lead Charge Count Rank  
18 USC 1956 - Laundering of monetary instruments 15 1 More
31 USC 5332 - Bulk Cash Smuggling into or out of the United States 6 2 More
18 USC 1343 - Fraud by wire, radio, or television 5 3 More
18 USC 471 - Obligations or securities of United States 4 4 More
18 USC 371 - Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud US 3 5 More
18 USC 472 - Uttering counterfeit obligations or securities 3 5 More
18 USC 554 - Smuggling goods from the United States 2 7 More
18 USC 1959 - Violent crimes in aid of racketeering activity 2 7 More
21 USC 846 - Attempt and conspiracy 2 7 More
18 USC 111 - Assaulting, resisting, impeding certain officers 1 10 More
18 USC 1341 - Mail Fraud - Frauds and swindles 1 10 More
18 USC 1546 - Fraud and misuse of visas, permits, and other documents 1 10 More
18 USC 2320 - Trafficking in counterfeit goods or services 1 10 More
21 USC 841 - Drug Abuse Prevention & Control-Prohibited acts A 1 10 More
22 USC 2778 - Control of arms exports and imports 1 10 More
State or Territory Provision 1 10 More
Table 2. Top Charges for Convictions

  • "Laundering of monetary instruments" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 1956) was the most frequent recorded lead charge.

  • Ranked 2nd in frequency was the lead charge "Bulk Cash Smuggling into or out of the United States" under Title 31 U.S.C Section 5332.

  • Ranked 3rd was "Fraud by wire, radio, or television" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1343.

Top Ranked Judicial Districts

In August 2023 the Justice Department's case-by-case records show that the government obtained 17.7 government regulatory convictions for every ten million people in the United States.

Understandably, there is great variation in the number of government regulatory 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  
Puer Rico 5 1 More
N. Y., S 4 2 More
New Hamp 4 2 More
Arizona 3 4 More
Kansas 3 4 More
Texas, S 3 4 More
Cal, C 2 7 More
Fla, S 2 7 More
Ga, N 2 7 More
Mo, W 2 7 More
Ohio, N 2 7 More
Penn, E 2 7 More
Texas, W 2 7 More
Table 3. Top 10 Districts

  • The District of Puerto Rico — with 5 convictions — was the most active during August 2023.

  • The Southern District of New York (Manhattan) and District of New Hampshire ranked 2nd.

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 government regulatory crime cases resulting in convictions of this type during August 2023 are shown in Table 4.

Judge Count Rank  
Laplante, Joseph Normand New Hamp 4 1 More
Delgado-Colon, Aida M. Puer Rico 4 1 More
Olvera, Jose Rolando, Jr. Texas, S 3 3 More
Melgren, Eric F. Kansas 2 4 More
Ketchmark, Roseann Ambrosia Mo, W 2 4 More
Lioi, Sara Elizabeth Ohio, N 2 4 More
Rayes, Douglas Leroy Arizona 1 7 More
Burns, Larry Alan Cal, S 1 7 More
Lenard, Joan A. Fla, S 1 7 More
Altman, Roy Kalman Fla, S 1 7 More
Vineyard, Russell G. Ga, N 1 7 More
Anand, Justin S. Ga, N 1 7 More
Moody, James Tyne Ind, N 1 7 More
Teeter, Holly Lou Kansas 1 7 More
Boom, Claria Horn Ken, E 1 7 More
Young, William G. Mass 1 7 More
Christensen, Dana Lewis Montana 1 7 More
D'Agostino, Mae Avila N. Y., N 1 7 More
Buchwald, Naomi Reice N. Y., S 1 7 More
Kaplan, Lewis A. N. Y., S 1 7 More
Stein, Sidney H. N. Y., S 1 7 More
Furman, Jesse Matthew N. Y., S 1 7 More
Rossiter, Robert F., Jr. Nebraska 1 7 More
Pappert, Gerald John Penn, E 1 7 More
Kenney, Chad Francis, Sr. Penn, E 1 7 More
Mannion, Malachy E. Penn, M 1 7 More
Besosa, Francisco Augusto Puer Rico 1 7 More
Mazzant, Amos L. Texas, E 1 7 More
Kacsmaryk, Matthew Joseph Texas, N 1 7 More
Counts, Walter David, III Texas, W 1 7 More
Guaderrama, David C. Texas, W 1 7 More
Dillon, Elizabeth Kay Virg, W 1 7 More
Chambers, Robert Charles W Virg, S 1 7 More
Table 4. Top Ten Judges

A total of 21 out of the "top ten" judges were in districts which were in the top ten with the largest number of government regulatory convictions , while the remaining 12 judges were from other districts. (Because of ties, there were a total of 33 judges in the "top ten" rankings.)

  • Judges Joseph Normand Laplante in the District of New Hampshire and Aida M. Delgado-Colon in the District of Puerto Rico ranked 1st with 4 convicted in government regulatory convictions.

  • Judge Jose Rolando Olvera, Jr. in the Southern District of Texas (Houston) ranked 3rd with 3 convicted in government regulatory convictions.

Report Generated: October 6, 2023
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