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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Navy Role in Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) -- Background and Issues for Congress
The Navy for several years has carried out a variety of activities related to what the Administration refers to as the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT). The Navy states that as of February 2008, more than 11,300 Navy sailors (including Individual Augmentees) were ashore supporting ground forces in the U.S. Central Command region (including Iraq and Afghanistan). The Navy's role in the GWOT raises several potential oversight issues for Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10660/
United States v. Santos: "Proceeds" in Federal Criminal Money Laundering Statute, 18 U.S.C. Section 1956, Means "Profits," Not "Gross Receipts"
On June 2, 2008, the U.S. Supreme Court, in United States v. Santos (No. 96-1005), vacated convictions of the operator of an illegal lottery and one of his runners who had been charged with conducting financial transactions involving the "proceeds" of an illegal lottery and one of his runners who had been charged with conducting financial transactions involving the "proceeds" of an illegal gaming business. The ruling is that "proceeds," as used in this money laundering statute, means "profits" rather than "gross receipts" of the underlying unlawful activity. This report analyzes this decision, the factors contributing to the decision, the principles upon which the decision was based, and the possible future effects of the ruling. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10756/
Armed Career Criminal Act (18 U.S.C. 924(e)): An Overview
This report discusses the Armed Career Criminal Act (ACCA), 18 U.S.C. 924(e). The law requires a minimum 15-year term of imprisonment for recidivists convicted of unlawful possession of a firearm under 18 U.S.C. 922(g), who have three prior state or federal convictions for violent felonies or serious drug offenses. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743592/
International Small Arms and Light Weapons Transfers: U.S. Policy
This report provides general background on U.S. policy regarding the international trade in small arms and light weapons (SA/LW). It outlines major questions associated with the international trade in these items, and reviews United States efforts to assist in controlling the illicit transfers of these items. This report will be revised as developments warrant. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9531/
Homeland Security: Protecting Airliners from Terrorist Missiles
Recent events have focused attention on the threat that terrorists with shoulder fired surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), referred to as Man-Portable Air Defense Systems (MANPADS), pose to commercial airliners. This report discusses SAMs and examines options for mitigating missile threats. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8580/
Homeland Security: Protecting Airliners from Terrorist Missiles
Recent events have focused attention on the threat that terrorists with shoulder fired surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), referred to as Man-Portable Air Defense Systems (MANPADS), pose to commercial airliners. This report discusses SAMs and examines options for mitigating missile threats. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8539/
Guantanamo Detainees: Habeas Corpus Challenges in Federal Court
This report provides an overview of the Combatant Status Review Tribunal procedures, summarizes court cases related to the detentions and the use of military commissions, and summarizes the Graham Amendment and analyzes how it might affect detainee-related litigation in federal court. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8224/
H.R. 5825 (109th Congress): "Electronic Surveillance Modernization Act"
This report discusses the National Security Agency’s “Terrorist Surveillance Program,” a program in which international communications of persons within the United States have been the subject of electronic surveillance without a warrant or a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court order. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9522/
Is Violent Crime in the United States Increasing?
Overall, homicide and violent crime rates have been trending downward for more than two decades, and both rates are at historic lows. An analysis comparing 2014 and 2015 homicide data from the nation's 60 most populous cities suggests that violent crime is not increasing. This report discusses several short-term factors that might help explain some of the reported upticks in violent crime across the country. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795528/
Anti-Terrorist/Anti-Money Laundering Information-Sharing by Financial Institutions under FINCEN's Regulations
This report discusses Information-sharing programs developed by Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FINCEN) designed to aid law enforcement investigation and prosecution of money laundering and terrorist financing. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795802/
Sentencing Reform: Comparison of Selected Proposals
This report is a comparison of selected criminal sentencing reform bills as introduced: H.R. 3713, H.R. 2944, S. 502, and H.R. 920; and S. 2123 as passed by the Senate Judiciary Committee with a manager's amendment). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795834/
Special Prosecutors: Investigations and Prosecutions of Police Use of Deadly Force
This legal sidebar discusses the suggestion to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate cases of alleged law enforcement criminality. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795339/
Sentence Reform Acts: S.2123 and H.R. 3713
This report discusses the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2015, S. 2123, and the Sentencing Reform Act of 2015, H.R. 3713, use virtually identical language to reduce the impact of the mandatory minimum sentences which federal courts must now impose for certain drug trafficking and firearms offenses. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795423/
Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA): Background and Funding
This report provides an overview of the federal response to domestic violence--defined broadly to include acts of physical and nonphysical violence against spouses and other intimate partners--through the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795432/
The Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Program: An Overview
This report provides an overview of the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program, administered by the Department of Justice (DOJ), which provides financial assistance to eligible police departments to help improve community policing efforts. It includes a brief discussion of the establishment of the program, guidelines and requirements for grantees, and a summary of various Department of Justice initiatives under the COPS program. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795785/
Federal Tactical Teams
This report provides a brief overview of the development of tactical teams at the state and local level and the concerns raised by their expansion. It then discusses the composition of these teams in the federal government. It concludes with a discussion of potential issues for policymakers to consider if they take up legislation or conduct oversight related to how the federal government uses tactical teams. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795776/
NASA's Space Shuttle Program: The Columbia Tragedy, the Discovery Mission, and the Future of the Shuttle
This report discusses the Columbia tragedy, the Discovery mission, and issues for Congress regarding the future of the shuttle. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8700/
Capital Punishment: An Overview of Federal Death Penalty Statutes
This report lists the current federal capital offenses and summarizes the procedures for federal civilian death penalty cases. Several laws are relevant to the topic including: P.L. 103-322, the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994; the Anti-terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996; and P.L. 107-197, the Terrorist Bombings Convention Implementation Act of 2002. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc824804/
Combating Terrorism: First Emergency Supplemental Appropriations - Distribution of Funds to Departments and Agencies
This report provides background on the 2001 Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act for Recovery from and Response to Terrorist Attacks on the United States, P.L. 107-38 (H.R. 2888) as well as the criteria for use of the funds developed by The Office of Management and Budget (OMB). It also outlines information about supplemental fund distributions in three tables. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc824750/
War On Drugs: Legislation in the 108th Congress and Related Developments
This report covers significant legislative and oversight activities of the 108th Congress that concern domestic law enforcement aspects of federal anti-drug policy. It also includes an overview of significant executive branch actions and other current developments of likely interest to the congressional audience that follows this issue. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc824754/
Drug Control: International Policy and Approaches
This report discusses various U.S. international narcotics policy approaches meant to achieve two main goals: to reduce the supply of illicit narcotics flowing into the United States, and to reduce the amount of illicit narcotics cultivated, processed, and consumed worldwide. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc824496/
Free-Riders or Compelled Riders? Key Takeaways as Court Considers Major Union Dues Case
This report briefly outlines the ongoing debate regarding Union dues. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of 2015, 7.2 million employees in the public sector belong to a union, with more than 700,000 additional government employees being represented by a union without belonging to the union. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc824656/
Juvenile Justice Funding Trends
This report provides a brief overview of the juvenile justice grant programs and the overall appropriation administered by the Department of Justice's (DOJ's) Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). There is no federal juvenile justice system, however the government uses federal juvenile justice entities and grant programs in order to influence the states' systems. Eligibility for some of these grant programs is tied to certain mandates that the states must adhere to in order to receive federal funding. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc824606/
Extraterritorial Application of American Criminal Law: An Abbreviated Sketch
This report discusses the application of American criminal law outside the United States. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc821700/
Proposed Colombia Free Trade Agreement: Labor Issues
This report examines three labor issues and arguments related to the pending U.S.-Colombia free trade agreement (CFTA, H.R. 5724): violence against trade unionists; impunity (accountability for or punishment of the perpetrators); and worker rights protections for Colombians. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc820872/
Federal Sentencing Guidelines: Background, Legal Analysis, and Policy Options
This report provides a summary of U.S. penal policy at the federal level. The report then discusses legislation that created the current federal sentencing structure, the different types of sentencing guidelines, and analyses of departures from the guidelines under the federal system and of possible policy options the 109th Congress may wish to consider if it chooses to address this issue. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc847666/
Clean Water Act and Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) of Pollutants
This report discusses the section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act, which requires states to identify waters that are impaired by pollution, even after application of pollution controls. For those waters, states must establish a total maximum daily load (TMDL) of pollutants to ensure that water quality standards can be attained. Implementation of this provision has been dormant until recently, when states and EPA were prodded by numerous lawsuits. The TMDL issue has become controversial, in part because of requirements and costs now facing states to implement a 25-year-old provision of the law. Congressional activity to reauthorize the Act, a possibility in the 2nd Session of the 105th Congress, could include TMDL issues, but the direction for any such action is unclear at this time. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc820978/
Fifth Amendment Privilege Against SelfIncrimination May Not Be Extended in Cases Where Only a Foreign Prosecution Is Possible
Several courts in the various circuits have considered whether the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination applies to fear of incrimination in foreign countries, and they have come to divergent conclusions. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari in United States v. Balsys, and on June 25, 1998, decided that a witness may not invoke the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination in which only a foreign prosecution is possible. This report provides background on United States v. Balsys and examines the court's opinion. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc821091/
Trafficking in Persons in Latin America and the Caribbean
This report describes the nature and scope of the problem of trafficking in persons in Latin America and the Caribbean. The report then describes U.S. efforts to deal with trafficking in persons in the region, as well as discusses the successes and failures of some recent country and regional anti-trafficking efforts. The report concludes by raising several issues for policy consideration that may be helpful as the 109th Congress continues to address human trafficking as part of its authorization, appropriations, and oversight activities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc821093/
Cybersecurity: Authoritative Reports and Resources, by Topic
Cybersecurity vulnerabilities challenge governments, businesses, and individuals worldwide. Attacks have been initiated by individuals, as well as countries. Targets have included government networks, military defenses, companies, or political organizations, depending upon whether the attacker was seeking military intelligence, conducting diplomatic or industrial espionage, or intimidating political activists. This report provides links to selected authoritative resources related to cybersecurity issues. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc822541/
Cybersecurity: Authoritative Reports and Resources, by Topic
This report provides references to analytical reports on cybersecurity from CRS, other government agencies, trade associations, and interest groups. In addition, the report lists selected cybersecurity-related websites for congressional and government agencies, news, international organizations, and organizations or institutions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc822526/
Transnational Organized Crime: Principal Threats and U.S. Responses
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Transnational Organized Crime: Principal Threats and U.S. Responses
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Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS): Background and Funding
This report discusses the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program, which was created by Title I of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 (P.L. 103-322). The mission of the COPS program is to advance community policing in all jurisdictions across the United States. Legislation introduced in the 111th Congress would reauthorize the COPS program through FY2014 and reestablish COPS as a multi-grant program. This report provides an overview and analysis of issues Congress might choose to consider when taking up legislation to reauthorize the COPS program. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc272095/
Sex Trafficking of Children in the United States: Overview and Issues for Congress
This report discusses human trafficking that involves the exploitation of individuals for forced labor or commercial sex. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc287889/
Judicial Activity Concerning Enemy Combatant Detainees: Major Court Rulings
This report discusses major judicial opinions concerning suspected enemy belligerents detained in the conflict with Al Qaeda and the Taliban. The report addresses all Supreme Court decisions concerning enemy combatants and also discusses notable circuit court opinions addressing issues of ongoing relevance. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc287956/
Search and Seizure Cases in the October 2012 Term of the Supreme Court
The Supreme Court decided four search and seizure cases during its October 2012 term: Florida v. Jardines, Florida v. Harris, Bailey v. United, and Missouri v. McNeely. This report discusses the prior precedents in each case as well as the decision reached by the Court. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462605/
American Jihadist Terrorism: Combating a Complex Threat
This report describes homegrown violent jihadists and the plots and attacks that have occurred since 9/11. "Homegrown" and "domestic" are terms that describe terrorist activity or plots perpetrated within the United States or abroad by American citizens, legal permanent residents, or visitors radicalized largely within the United States. The report also discusses the radicalization process and the forces driving violent extremist activity. It analyzes post-9/11 domestic jihadist terrorism and describes law enforcement and intelligence efforts to combat terrorism and the challenges associated with those efforts. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc491228/
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress
This report focuses on human trafficking both internationally and within the United States. The report begins with an overview of human trafficking including a discussion of the definition of human trafficking, the scope of the problem globally, and an examination of the victims. It follows with an analysis of global anti-trafficking efforts by the United States and the international community. The report then focuses on trafficking into and within the United States, examining relief for trafficking victims in the United States and discussing U.S. law enforcement efforts to combat domestic trafficking. The report concludes with an overview of anti-trafficking legislation and an analysis of policy issues related to human trafficking. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc491453/
Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS): Current Legislative Issues
This report provides an overview and analysis of issues Congress might choose to consider when taking up legislation to reauthorize the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc491431/
International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues
This report provides background on the International Criminal Court (ICC) and its investigations in Africa, with an overview of cases currently before the Court. The report also examines issues raised by the ICC's actions in Africa, including the potential deterrence of future abuses and the potential impact on African peace processes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc491334/
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress
This report focuses on international and domestic human trafficking and U.S. policy responses, with particular emphasis on the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA) and its subsequent reauthorizations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc490954/
Organized Crime in the United States: Trends and Issues for Congress
This report provides a background on organized crime in the United States as well as the tools that Congress has afforded for the federal government to combat it. It outlines the trends in federal efforts to investigate and prosecute organized crime. The report then discusses the evolving nature of organized crime, including the domestic impact of organized crime, prominent organized crime groups, and their illegal activities affecting the United States. It concludes with a discussion of issues that Congress may wish to consider, including the attention the federal government allocates to organized crime matters, the multilateral efforts to combat organized crime, and issues surrounding a potential nexus between organized crime and terrorism. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc490895/
Detention of U.S. Persons as Enemy Belligerents
This report provides a background to the legal issues presented, followed by a brief introduction to the law of war pertinent to the detention of different categories of individuals. An overview of U.S. practice during wartime to detain persons deemed dangerous to the national security is presented. The report concludes by discussing Congress's role in prescribing rules for wartime detention as well as legislative proposals in the 112th Congress to address the detention of U.S. persons. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462046/
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress
This report focuses on international and domestic human trafficking and U.S. policy responses, with particular emphasis on the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA) and its subsequent reauthorizations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462268/
Iraqi Police and Security Forces Casualties Estimates
This report presents various governmental and non-governmental estimates of Iraqi police and security forces fatalities. The Department of Defense (DOD) regularly updates total U.S. military deaths and wounded statistics from Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), as reflected in CRS Report RS21578, Iraq: U.S. Casualties, and has released the monthly pattern of Iraqi security forces deaths. For information on Iraqi civilian deaths, see CRS Report RS22537, Iraqi Civilian Deaths Estimates. Because these estimates are based on varying time periods and have been created using differing methodologies, readers should exercise caution when using them and should look on them as guideposts rather than as statements of fact. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462584/
Comparison of Rights in Military Commission Trials and Trials in Federal Criminal Court
This report provides a brief summary of legal issues raised by the choice of forum for trying accused terrorists and a chart comparing selected military commissions rules under the Military Commissions Act, as amended, to the corresponding rules that apply in federal court. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462797/
Protecting the U.S. Perimeter: "Border Searches" Under the Fourth Amendment
This report addresses the scope of the government's authority to search and seize individuals at the border pursuant to the constitutional framework that encompasses the border search exception to the warrant and probable cause requirements of the Fourth Amendment. This report also describes the varying levels of suspicion generally associated with each type of border search as interpreted by the courts. In addition, this report highlights some of the border security recommendations made by the 9/11 Commission and legislative actions taken in the 108th, 109th, and 110th Congresses. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462911/
Trafficking in Persons in Latin America and the Caribbean
This report describes the nature and scope of the problem of trafficking in persons in Latin America and the Caribbean. It then describes U.S. efforts to deal with trafficking in persons in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as discusses the successes and failures of some recent country and regional anti-trafficking efforts. The report concludes by raising issues that may be helpful for the 110th Congress to consider during its second session as it continues to address human trafficking as part of its authorization, appropriations, and oversight activities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462997/
Supreme Court Appellate Jurisdiction Over Military Court Cases
This report surveys military courts' jurisdiction, the structure of appellate review for military cases, interactions between military and civilian courts, the Stevenson case, and the bills introduced in the 110th Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462402/