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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
The SAFE Acts of 2005: H.R. 1526 and S. 737--A Sketch
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Bioterrorism: Legislation to Improve Public Health Preparedness and Response Capacity
This report shows that while lawmakers work towards final passage of new authorizing legislation, Congress has appropriated more than $3 billion to the Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS) to increase bioterrorism preparedness at the federal, state, and local levels. HHS anti-bioterrorism funding was included in the FY2002 Labor-HHSEducation appropriations bill and in the $20 billion emergency spending package that was attached to the FY2002 Defense appropriations bill. Until the new authorizing legislation is enacted, HHS is dispersing the funds according to existing authorities and the broad parameters set out in the appropriations bills. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7017/
Bioterrorism: Legislation to Improve Public Health Preparedness and Response Capacity
While lawmakers work towards final passage of new authorizing legislation, Congress has appropriated $3 billion to the Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS) for FY2002 to increase bio-terrorism preparedness at the federal, state, and local levels. HHS anti bio-terrorism funding was included in theFY2002Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill (P.L. 107-116, H.R. 3061) and in the $20 billion emergency spending package (P.L. 107- 117, H.R. 3338). HHS is dispersing the funds according to existing authorities and the broad spending parameters set out in the appropriations bills. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7018/
Protecting Our Perimeter: “Border Searches” under the Fourth Amendment
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Overview and Analysis of Senate Amendment Concerning Interrogation of Detainees
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Child Pornography Produced Without an Actual Child: Constitutionality of 108th Congress Legislation
This report analyzes the First Amendment issues raised by S. 151, 108th Congress, in the versions passed by the Senate and the House. The Senate passed the version reported by the Senate Committee on the Judiciary (S.Rept. 108-2). The House version began as H.R. 1161, which, except for its section 10, was adopted as an amendment (Title V) to H.R. 1104, which the House passed as S. 151, the Child Abduction Prevention Act. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs3902/
Child Pornography Produced Without an Actual Child: Constitutionality of 108th Congress Legislation
This report analyzes S. 151, 108th Congress, as reported by the Senate Committee on the Judiciary (S.Rept. 108-2) and passed by the Senate, and considers whether it would violate freedom of speech. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs3901/
Juvenile Justice Legislation: Overview and the Legislative Debate
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First Responder Initiative: Policy Issues and Options
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Detention of U.S. Persons as Enemy Belligerents
The detainee provisions passed as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2012 affirm that the Authorization for Use of Military Force in response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, authorizes the detention of persons captured in connection with hostilities. 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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84022/
The Posse Comitatus Act and Related Matters: A Sketch
This report examines instances, as approved by Congress, where circumstances warrant a departure from the general rule of the Posse Comitatus Act, wherein the military is typically prevented from direct involvement in civilian affairs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc122237/
Trafficking in Persons: International Dimensions and Foreign Policy Issues for Congress
This report explores current foreign policy issues confronting U.S. efforts to combat human trafficking, the interrelationship among existing polices, and the historical and current role of Congress in such efforts. The 112th Congress has introduced and taken action on several bills related to human trafficking. Given recent challenges in balancing budget priorities, the 112th Congress may choose to consider certain aspects of this issue further, including the effectiveness of international anti-trafficking projects, interagency coordination mechanisms, and the monitoring and enforcement of anti-trafficking regulations, particularly as they relate to the activities of U.S. government contractors and subcontractors operating overseas. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc122225/
Drones in Domestic Surveillance Operations: Fourth Amendment Implications and Legislative Responses
This report first explores the potential uses of drones in the domestic sphere by federal, state, and local governments. It then surveys current Fourth Amendment jurisprudence, including cases surrounding privacy in the home, privacy in public spaces, location tracking, manned aerial surveillance, and those involving the national border. Next, it considers how existing jurisprudence may inform current and proposed drone uses. It then describes the various legislative measures introduced in the 112th Congress to address the legal and policy issues surrounding drones and, finally, briefly identifies several alternative approaches that may constrain the potential scope of drone surveillance. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc122251/
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/
Extraterritorial Application of American Criminal Law
Crime is ordinarily proscribed, tried and punished according to the laws on the place where it occurs. American criminal law applies beyond the geographical confines of the United States, however, under some limited circumstances. The federal exceptions to the general rule usually involve crimes like drug trafficking, terrorism, or crimes committed aboard a ship or airplane. State prosecution for overseas misconduct is limited almost exclusively to multijurisdictional crimes, i.e., crimes where some elements of the offense are committed within the state and others are committed abroad. The Constitution, Congress, and state law define the circumstances under which American criminal law may be used against crimes occurring, in whole or in part, outside the United States digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26037/
Organized Crime in the United States: Trends and Issues for Congress
This report discusses the threat of organized crime against the United States, most notably organized crime from criminal organizations in Russia, Asia, Italy, the Balkans, the Middle East, and Africa. The report explores the issue of organized crime in relation to the economic downturn and national security, namely terrorism. The report also discusses how Congress is currently working to address these issues and includes information on relevant pieces of legislation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26146/
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress
Trafficking in persons (TIP) for the purposes of exploitation is believed to be one of the most prolific areas of international criminal activity and is of significant concern to the United States and the international community. This report discusses the global and ongoing problem of TIP in detail, as well as anti-TIP programs and U.S. and international efforts to combat TIP. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26268/
Child Pornography: Constitutional Principles and Federal Statutes
This report discusses the constitutional status of child pornography and summarizes federal statutes banning and regulating child pornography as well as selected court cases that have ruled on their constitutionality or interpreted them. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26087/
Department of Homeland Security Assistance to States and Localities: A Summary and Issues for the 111th Congress
This report summarizes several emergency management and homeland security programs, and identifies and analyzes potential issues for the 111th Congress. These issues include (1) the purpose and number of assistance programs; (2) the evaluation of the use of grant funding; (3) the determination of eligible grant recipients; (4) the programs' funding amounts; and (5) the programs; funding distribution methodologies. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26137/
Trafficking in Persons: International Dimensions and Foreign Policy Issues for Congress
This report explores current foreign policy issues confronting U.S. efforts to combat human trafficking, the interrelationship among existing polices, and the historical and current role of Congress in such efforts. Given recent challenges in balancing budget priorities, the 112th Congress may choose to consider certain aspects of this issue further, including the effectiveness of international anti-trafficking projects, interagency coordination mechanisms, and the monitoring and enforcement of anti-trafficking regulations, particularly as they relate to the activities of U.S. government contractors and subcontractors operating overseas. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc98017/
American Jihadist Terrorism: Combating a Complex Threat
This report describes homegrown violent jihadists and the plots and attacks that have occurred since 9/11. For this report, "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. It also outlines actions underway to build trust and partnership between community groups and government agencies and the tensions that may occur between law enforcement and engagement activities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc83950/
Extraterritorial Application of American Criminal Law
Crime is ordinarily proscribed, tried, and punished according to the laws of the place where it occurs. American criminal law applies beyond the geographical confines of the United States, however, under certain limited circumstances. A surprising number of federal criminal statutes have extraterritorial application, but prosecutions have been few. This may be because when extraterritorial criminal jurisdiction does exist, practical and legal complications, and sometimes diplomatic considerations, may counsel against its exercise. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc83803/
Detention of U.S. Persons as Enemy Belligerents
This report provides a background to the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2012, the Authorization to use Military Force act, and the President's power to detain "enemy combatants." It then gives a brief introduction to the law of war pertinent to the detention of different categories of individuals and an overview of U.S. practice during wartime to detain persons deemed dangerous to national security. It concludes by discussion 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/metadc93921/
DNA Databanking: Selected Fourth Amendment Issues and Analysis
This report looks at how the practice of DNA database programs, which have been looked at favorably by Congress, are in possible violation of the Fourth Amendment's prohibition on unreasonable searches and seizures. It looks at how the databases' legality has currently been holding up in court, as well as how new advances and revelations in the science of forensic analysis and databanking may have potentially significant legal implications. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc93877/
Islamist Militancy in the Pakistan-Afghanistan Border Region and U.S. Policy
Increasing militant activity in western Pakistan poses three key national security threats: an increased potential for major attacks against the United States itself; a growing threat to Pakistani stability; and a hindrance of U.S. efforts to stabilize Afghanistan. This report addresses this issue at length. It also describes the recent upsurge of militant activity on the Pakistani side of the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, as well as the general political climates of Pakistan and Afghanistan and their relationships with the United States. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26300/
Gun Control: Statutory Disclosure Limitations on ATF Firearms Trace Data and Multiple Handgun Sales Reports
This report briefly describes a provision known as the "Tiahrt" amendment, a rider on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) appropriations that prohibits ATF from disclosing firearm trace data and multiple handgun sales reports data for any purpose other than supporting a criminal investigatoin or agency licensing proceeding. The Tiahrt amendment is so called because its sponsor is Representative Todd Tiahrt. A coalition of 210 city mayors favors the repeal of this rider, but there is much opposition to that motion. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26332/
The Brady Handgun Control Act: Constitutional Issues
The Brady Handgun Control Act established a five-day waiting period for handgun purchases, during which local law enforcement can make reasonable efforts to conduct background checks in available records and block and sales to convicted felons and other disqualified persons. This report reviews the background of federal gun control legislation, analyzes the conflict in the courts over the constitutionality under the Tenth Amendment of the duties placed on local law enforcement, and considers the implications of the decisions for Brady Act enforcement. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26060/
Protecting the U.S. Perimeter: Border Searches Under the Fourth Amendment
This report first outlines the statutes authorizing certain federal officers to conduct warrantless searches. It then addresses the scope of the government's constitutional authority to search and seize persons and property at the border. It also describes the varying levels of suspicion generally required for each type of border search as interpreted by the courts. Finally, this report lists several bills before the 111th Congress that address border searches. This report does not address interior searches and seizures performed by immigration personnel since they are not traditional "border searches." digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26206/
Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS): Current Legislative Issues
The Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program 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/metadc26191/
The National Response Framework: Overview and Possible Issues for Congress
In response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Congress and the President consolidated numerous federal emergency plans into the National Response Plan (NRP). This report discusses how national response planning documents have evolved over time and describes the authorities that shape the National Response Framework (NRF). Several issue areas that might be examined for potential lawmaking and oversight concerning the NRF are also highlighted. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26295/
Alert Systems for Missing Adults in Eleven States: Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses the emerging development of nationwide alert systems to recover missing adults, such as those with mental impairment (such as Alzheimer's disease), developmental disabilities, or suicidal tendencies. This report provides an overview of such alert systems in 11 states: Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Texas, and Virginia. This report also provides a discussion of issues for Congress to consider with respect to the federal role, if any, in developing state alert programs for missing adults. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26150/
Trafficking in Persons: International Dimensions and Foreign Policy Issues for Congress
This report explores current foreign policy issues confronting U.S. efforts to combat human trafficking, the interrelationship among existing polices, and the historical and current role of Congress in such efforts. Given recent challenges in balancing budget priorities, the 112th Congress may choose to consider certain aspects of this issue further, including the effectiveness of international anti-trafficking projects, interagency coordination mechanisms, and the monitoring and enforcement of anti-trafficking regulations, particularly as they relate to the activities of U.S. government contractors and subcontractors operating overseas. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc96720/
Mail and Wire Fraud: A Brief Overview of Federal Criminal Law
This report discusses ways in which mail and wire fraud can be federal crimes and penalties for conducting such crimes. It is a federal crime to devise a scheme to defraud another of property, when either mail or wire communications are used in furtherance of the scheme. Misconduct that constitutes mail or wire fraud may also constitute a violation of one or more other federal crimes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc96709/
State Statutes Governing Hate Crimes
Concerns about hate crimes have become increasingly prominent among policymakers at all levels of government in recent years. This report compiles state statutes pertaining to hate crimes, including in the context of federal legislation such as the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 and the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act (the latter of which was signed by President Obama on October 28, 1999). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc29664/
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/
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. The report begins with a description of key Trafficking in persons (TIP)-related definitions and an overview of the human trafficking problem. It follows with an overview of major foreign policy responses to international human trafficking. The report then focuses on responses to 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 current anti-trafficking legislation and an analysis of policy issues. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463328/