Percent Change from 5 years ago (Including Magistrate Court)
Percent Change from 5 years ago (Excluding Magistrate Court)
Table 1. Criminal White Collar Crime Convictions
The latest available data from the Justice Department show that during March 2022 the government reported 494 new white collar crime convictions.
According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), this number is up 41.5 percent over the previous month.
White Collar Crime
This report summarizes the government's recent efforts when it comes to combating white
collar crime — the number of such cases, the investigative agencies involved, the laws cited, the
busiest federal districts and the busiest federal judges.
The comparisons of the number of defendants convicted for white collar crime-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 2022 convictions of this type are compared with those of the same period in
the previous year, the number of convictions was up (26.6%).
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 26.5 percent from levels reported in 2017.
The decrease from the levels five years ago in white collar crime convictions for these matters is shown more clearly in Figure 1.
The vertical bars in Figure 1
represent the number of white collar crime 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.
Figure 1. Monthly Trends in White Collar Crime Convictions
Within the broad category of white collar crime, cases were classified by prosecutors into more specific types.
Antitrust Violations - Extraterritorial Application Of
Antitrust Violations - Finance Markets, Other than Banking
Aggravated Identity Theft
Other White Collar Crime/Fraud
The largest number of convictions of these matters in March 2022 was for "Fraud-Other", accounting for 25.3 percent of convictions. Convictions were also filed for "Fraud-Federal Program" (13%), "Fraud-Health Care" (12.6%), "Fraud-Financial Institution" (11.7%), "Fraud-Tax" (9.5%), "Fraud-Identity Theft-Aggravated" (5.7%), "Fraud-Other Business" (4.7%), "Fraud-Identity Theft-Other" (3.8%), "Fraud-Computer" (3.6%), "Fraud-Securities" (2.6%), "Fraud-Other Investment" (2%).
See Figure 2.
The lead investigative agency for white collar crime convictions in March 2022
was FBI accounting for 36 percent of convictions.
Other agencies with substantial numbers of white collar crime convictions were:
IRS (12% ), Postal (11%), SecServ (9%), SSA (8%).
See Figure 3.
Figure 2. Specific Types of Convictions
Figure 3. Convictions by Investigative Agency
White Collar Crime Convictions in U.S. Magistrate Courts
Top Ranked Lead Charges
In March 2022, 6 defendants in white collar crime 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 March the most frequently cited lead charge was
Title 18 U.S.C Section 1028 involving "Fraud and related activity - id documents". This was the lead charge
for 33.3 percent of all magistrate convictions in March.
White Collar Crime Convictions in U.S. District Courts
In March 2022, 488 defendants in new cases
for these matters were charged in the U.S. District Courts. In addition during March 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 March.
Top Ranked Lead Charges
Table 2 shows the top lead charges recorded in the convictions of white collar crime matters
filed in U.S. District Court during March 2022.
"Fraud by wire, radio, or television" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 1343) was the most frequent recorded lead charge.
"Fraud by wire, radio, or television" (Title 18 U.S.C Section 1343) was ranked 1 a year ago, while it was ranked 1 five years ago.
Ranked 2nd in frequency was the lead charge "Bank Fraud" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1344.
"Bank Fraud" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1344 was ranked 2 a year ago, while it was ranked 6 five years ago.
Ranked 3rd was "Mail Fraud - Attempt and Conspiracy" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1349.
"Mail Fraud - Attempt and Conspiracy" under Title 18 U.S.C Section 1349 was ranked 3 a year ago, while it was ranked 7 five years ago.
Among these top ten lead charges, the one showing the greatest
increase in convictions — up 77.2 percent — compared to one year ago was Title 18 U.S.C Section 1341
that involves " Mail Fraud - Frauds and swindles ".
Compared to five years ago, the largest increase — 32.8 percent — was registered for
convictions under " Fraud by wire, radio, or television " (Title 18 U.S.C Section 1343 ).
Again among the top ten lead charges, the one showing the sharpest
decline in convictions compared to one year ago — down 14.3 percent — was
" Attempt to evade or defeat tax " (Title 26 U.S.C Section 7201 ).
Compared to five years ago, the most significant decline in convictions — 52.8 percent — was
for convictions where the lead charge was " Fraud and related activity - id documents " (Title 18 U.S.C Section 1028 ).
Top Ranked Judicial Districts
In March 2022 the Justice Department's case-by-case records show that the government obtained 178.4 white collar crime convictions for every ten million people in the United States.
Understandably, there is great variation in the per capita number of white collar crime 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 white collar crime convictions to receive a ranking.
Table 3. Top 10 Districts (per ten million people)
The District of Washington, D.C. (Washington) — with 1870 convictions as compared with 178.4 convictions per ten million population in the United States — was the most active during March 2022.
The Northern District of Alabama (Birmingham) ranked 2nd.
District of Rhode Island is now ranking 3rd.
Recent entrants to the top 10 list were
Northern District of Alabama (Birmingham), now ranked
, and Eastern District of Missouri (St. Louis)
In the same order, these districts ranked 12th and 14th one year ago and 54th and 8th five years ago.
The federal judicial district which showed the greatest growth
in the rate of white collar crime convictions compared to one year ago — 434.2 percent — was
Southern District of Florida (Miami).
Compared to five years ago, the district with the largest growth — 250 percent — was
Rhode Island .
In the last year, the judicial District Court recording the
largest drop in the rate of white collar crime convictions — 18.8 percent — was
Middle District of Pennsylvania (Scranton).
But over the past five years,
Eastern District of Missouri (St. Louis)
showed the largest drop — 49.3 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 white collar crime crime cases resulting in convictions of this type during March 2022 are shown in Table 4.
A total of 8 out of the "top ten" judges were in districts which were in the top ten with the largest number of white collar crime convictions per capita, while the remaining 8 judges were from other districts. (Because of ties, there were a total of 16 judges in the "top ten" rankings.)
Judge James S. Gwin in the Northern District of Ohio (Cleveland) ranked 1st with 8 convicted in white collar crime convictions.
Judges Liles Clifton Burke in the Northern District of Alabama (Birmingham) and Pedro Alberto Delgado Hernandez in the District of Puerto Rico ranked 2nd with 6 convicted in white collar crime convictions.