Released: February 18, 2009
A Rising Share: Hispanics and Federal Crime
Appendix A: Classification of Federal Offenses
Offense categories defined in this report were created by collapsing the primary offense categories utilized by the U.S. Sentencing Commission. The Commission determines an offender’s primary offense category by examining the offense conviction with the highest statutory maximum.4 Below is the description of the primary offense categories that make up the offense categories used in the analyses for this report.
Trafficking includes drug distribution/manufacture, drug distribution/manufacture: conspiracy, continuing criminal enterprise, drug distribution; employee under 21, drug distribution near school, drug import/export, drug distribution to person under 21, and establish/rent drug operation.
Communication Facility includes use of a communication facility in a drug trafficking offense.
Simple Possession includes distribution of a small amount of marijuana and simple possession.
Immigration includes trafficking in U.S. passports; trafficking in entry documents; failing to surrender naturalization certificate; fraudulently acquiring U.S. passports; smuggling, etc.; being an unlawful alien; fraudulently acquiring entry documents; and unlawfully entering U.S.
Murder includes first-degree murder, felony with death resulting, second-degree murder and conspiracy to murder (with death resulting).
Manslaughter includes both involuntary and voluntary manslaughter.
Sexual Abuse includes sexual abuse of a minor, transportation of minor for sex, sexual abuse of a ward, criminal sexual abuse and abusive sexual contact.
Assault includes attempt to commit murder, assault with intent to murder, threatening communication, aggravated assault, conspiracy with attempt to murder, obstructing or impeding officers, minor assault and conspiracy that includes assault with attempt to murder.
Robbery includes bank robbery, aggravated bank robbery, Hobbs Act robbery, mail robbery, other robbery and carjacking.
Arson also includes damage by explosives.
Burglary/Breaking & Entering includes post office burglary, burglary of Drug Enforcement Administration premises (pharmacy), burglary of other structure, bank burglary and burglary of a residence.
Auto Theft includes auto theft (including parts), receipt/possession of stolen auto or parts and altered identification numbers/trafficking in altered (auto).
Larceny includes bank larceny, theft from benefit plans, other theft: mail/post office, receipt/possession of stolen property (not auto), other theft; property, larceny/theft-mail/post office, larceny/theft; property (not auto) and theft from labor union.
White Collar and Fraud
Fraud includes odometer laws and regulations, insider trading, and fraud and deceit.
Embezzlement includes embezzlement: property, embezzlement from labor unions, embezzlement; mail/post office, embezzlement from benefit plans and bank embezzlement.
Forgery/Counterfeiting includes counterfeit bearer obligations and forgery/counterfeit (non-bearer obligations).
Bribery includes payment to obtain office, bribe involving officials, bribery: bank loan/commercial, loan or gratuity to bank examiner, etc., gratuity involving officials, and bribe or gratuity affecting employee plan.
Tax Offenses include receipt/trafficking in smuggled property, aid, etc., in tax fraud: fraud, tax returns, statements, etc.; fraud, false statement/perjury; failure to file or pay; tax evasion; evading import duties (smuggle); failure to collect or account for taxes; and regulatory offenses: taxes; failure to deposit taxes in trust account; nonpayment of taxes; conspiracy to avoid taxes; and offenses relating to withholding statements.
Money Laundering includes laundering of monetary instruments, monetary transaction from unlawful activity, failure to file currency report and failure to report monetary transactions.
Extortion/Racketeering includes extortionate extension of credit, blackmail, extortion by force or treat, Hobbs Act extortion, travel in aid of racketeering, crime relating to racketeering and violent crimes in aid of racketeering.
Antitrust includes bid-rigging, price-fixing and market allocation agreement.
Firearms includes unlawful possession/transportation of firearms or ammunition; possession of guns/explosives on aircraft; unlawful trafficking, etc., in explosives; possession of guns/explosives in federal facility/schools; use of fire or explosives to commit felony; and use of firearms or ammunition during crime.
Gambling/Lottery includes engaging in a gambling business, transmission of wagering information, obstruction to facilitate gambling and interstate transportation of wagering paraphernalia.
Civil Rights includes interference with rights under color of law; force or threats to deny benefits or rights; obstructing an election or registration; manufacture, etc., of eavesdropping device; other deprivations/discrimination; obstructing correspondence; peonage, servitude and slave trade; intercept communication or eavesdropping; and conspiracy to deprive an individual of civil rights.
Pornography, Prostitution includes dealing in obscene matter, transportation of minor for prostitution, transportation for prostitution/sex (adult), sexual exploitation of minors, materials involving sexual exploitation of minors, obscene telephone or broadcasting, and selling or buying children for pornography.
Offenses in Prisons includes contraband in prisons, riots in federal facilities and escape.
Administration of Justice includes commission of offense while on release, bribery of a witness, failure to appear by offender, contempt, failure to appear by material witness, obstruction of justice, payment of a witness, perjury or subornation of perjury, misprision of a felony and accessory after the fact.
Environmental/Fish and Wildlife includes waste discharge and offenses relating to specially protected fish, wildlife and plants.
National Defense includes evasion of export controls and exportation of arms, etc., without a license.
Food and Drug includes false information or tampering with products, tampering to injure business, tampering with risk of death or injury, and violation of regulations involving food, drugs, etc.
Kidnapping/Hostage includes ransom taking and hostage/kidnapping.
Other Miscellaneous Offenses includes illegal use of regulatory number – drugs; illegal transfer of drugs; illegal regulatory number to get drugs; drug paraphernalia; forgery/fraud for drugs; dangerous devices to protect drugs; manufacture drugs against quota; endangering life while manufacturing drugs; operate carrier under drugs; endangerment from hazardous/toxic substances; mishandling substances, records, etc.; threat of tampering with public water system; hazardous devices of federal lands; mishandling other pollutants, records, etc.; improper storage of explosives; recordkeeping violation – explosives; possession of other weapon – on aircraft, in federal facility; failure to report theft of explosives; feloniously mailing injurious articles; transport of hazardous material in commerce; interference with flight crew, other offense – aboard aircraft; criminal infringement of copyright/trademark; conflict of interest; unauthorized payment; non-drug forfeiture; impersonation; false statement to Employee Act; reporting offenses – labor related; criminal infringement of trademark; unlawful conduct relating to control/cigarettes; trespass; destruction of property; destruction of mail; aircraft piracy; conspiracy to murder (no death, assault or attempt); conspiracy to commit murder; and all other miscellaneous offenses not previously listed in any of the other categories.
- These descriptions are those used by the USSC and are from the 2007 Sourcebook of Federal Sentencing Statistics, Appendix A. ↩