Congressional Research Service Reports - Browse

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Polygraph Use by the Department of Energy: Issues for Congress
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Foreign Support of the U.S. War on Terrorism
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Foreign Support of the U.S. War on Terrorism
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Interrogation of Detainees: Overview of the McCain Amendment
Controversy has arisen regarding U.S. treatment of enemy combatants and terrorist suspects detained in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other locations, and whether such treatment complies with U.S. statutes and treaties such as the U.N. Convention Against Torture and Other Forms of Cruel and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT) and the 1949 Geneva Conventions. Congress approved additional guidelines concerning the treatment of detainees via the Detainee Treatment Act (DTA), which was enacted pursuant to both the Department of Defense, Emergency Supplemental Appropriations to Address Hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico, and Pandemic Influenza Act, 2006 (P.L. 109-148), and the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2006 (P.L. 109-163). Among other things, the DTA contains provisions that (1) require Department of Defense (DOD) personnel to employ United States Army Field Manual guidelines while interrogating detainees, and (2) prohibit the “cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment of persons under the detention, custody, or control of the United States Government.” These provisions of the DTA, which were first introduced by Senator John McCain, have popularly been referred to as the “McCain Amendment.” This report discusses the McCain Amendment, as modified and subsequently enacted into law.
Interrogation of Detainees: Overview of the McCain Amendment
Controversy has arisen regarding U.S. treatment of enemy combatants and terrorist suspects detained in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other locations, and whether such treatment complies with U.S. statutes and treaties such as the U.N. Convention Against Torture and Other Forms of Cruel and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT) and the 1949 Geneva Conventions. Congress approved additional guidelines concerning the treatment of detainees via the Detainee Treatment Act (DTA), which was enacted pursuant to both the Department of Defense, Emergency Supplemental Appropriations to Address Hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico, and Pandemic Influenza Act, 2006 (P.L. 109-148), and the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2006 (P.L. 109-163). Among other things, the DTA contains provisions that (1) require Department of Defense (DOD) personnel to employ United States Army Field Manual guidelines while interrogating detainees, and (2) prohibit the “cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment of persons under the detention, custody, or control of the United States Government.” These provisions of the DTA, which were first introduced by Senator John McCain, have popularly been referred to as the “McCain Amendment.” This report discusses the McCain Amendment, as modified and subsequently enacted into law.
Interrogation of Detainees: Overview of the McCain Amendment
This report discusses the Detainee Treatment Act (DTA), which contains provisions that (1) require Department of Defense (DOD) personnel to employ United States Army Field Manual guidelines while interrogating detainees, and (2) prohibit the “cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment of persons under the detention, custody, or control of the United States Government.” These provisions of the DTA, which were first introduced by Senator John McCain, have popularly been referred to as the “McCain amendment.” This report discusses the McCain amendment, as modified and subsequently enacted into law. This report also discusses the application of the McCain amendment by the DOD in the updated 2006 version of the Army Field Manual, particularly in light of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld.
North Korea: Terrorism List Removal?
This report discusses the issue of North Korea's inclusion on the U.S. list of terrorism-supporting countries, which has been a major issue in U.S.-North Korean diplomacy since 2000, particularly in connection with negotiations over North Korea's nuclear program.
Federal Crime Control: Background, Legislation, and Issues
This report discusses the prevention and control of domestic crime, which has traditionally been a responsibility of state and local governments, with the federal government playing more of a supportive role.
North Korea: Terrorism List Removal?
This report discusses the issue of North Korea's inclusion on the U.S. list of terrorism-supporting countries, which has been a major issue in U.S.-North Korean diplomacy since 2000, particularly in connection with negotiations over North Korea's nuclear program.
Missing and Exploited Children: Overview and Policy Concerns
This report presents an overview of two national incidence studies prepared by Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) to determine annually the number of reported missing and recovered children in the nation. It also discusses the AMBER Alert System created to help recover reported missing children, legislation introduced in the 108th Congresses to address the missing children issue, and questions that remain regarding concerns about missing children. S. 151, the Prosecutorial Remedies and Other Tools to End the Exploitation of Children Today (PROTECT) Act, which was signed into law (P.L. 108-21) by the President on April 30, 2003, contains provisions related to missing and exploited children. Exploitation of Children Today (PROTECT) Act, which was signed into law (P.L. 108-21) by the President on April 30, 2003, contains provisions related to missing and exploited children.
Missing and Exploited Children: Overview and Policy Concerns
This report presents an overview of two national incidence studies prepared by Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) to determine annually the number of reported missing and recovered children in the nation. It also discusses the AMBER Alert System created to help recover reported missing children, legislation introduced in the 108th Congresses to address the missing children issue, and questions that remain regarding concerns about missing children. S. 151, the Prosecutorial Remedies and Other Tools to End the Exploitation of Children Today (PROTECT) Act, which was signed into law (P.L. 108-21) by the President on April 30, 2003, contains provisions related to missing and exploited children.
Missing and Exploited Children: Overview and Policy Concerns
This report presents an overview of two national incidence studies prepared by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) to determine annually the number of reported missing and recovered children in the nation. It also discusses the AMBER Alert System created to help recover reported missing children, legislation introduced in the 108th Congresses to address the missing children issue, and questions that remain regarding concerns about missing children.
Missing and Exploited Children: Overview and Policy Concerns
This report presents an overview of two national incidence studies prepared by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) to determine annually the number of reported missing and recovered children in the nation. It also discusses the AMBER Alert System created to help recover reported missing children, legislation introduced in the 108th Congresses to address the missing children issue, and questions that remain regarding concerns about missing children.
Missing and Exploited Children: Overview and Policy Concerns
This report presents an overview of two national incidence studies prepared by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) to determine annually the number of reported missing and recovered children in the nation. It also discusses the AMBER Alert System created to help recover reported missing children, legislation introduced in the 108th Congresses to address the missing children issue, and questions that remain regarding concerns about missing children.
Latin America: Terrorism Issues
This report discusses terrorism in the region tri-border area (TBA) of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay has been a regional hub for Hizballah and Hamas fundraising activities. The report also examines activity by Cuba, which has been designated by the State Department as a state sponsor of terrorism since 1982, and asserts that Venezuela has virtually ceased its cooperation in the global war on terror.
Military Aviation: Issues and Options for Combating Terrorism and Counterinsurgency
This report provides background on terrorism and non-state actor challenges, and how military aviation may contribute to operations against these actors. The report discusses issues associated with the use of military aviation against non-state actors, and potential options for consideration.
Criminal Money Laundering Legislation in the 109th Congress
This report gives a brief overview of U.S. law as it relates to the crime of money laundering by identifying bills in the 109th Congress that have amended definitions or sentencing for money laundering and predicated offenses.
Gangs in Central America
This report describes the gang problem in Central America, discusses country and regional approaches to deal with the gangs, and analyzes U.S. policy with respect to gangs in Central America.
Congress' Power to Legislate Control Over Hate Crimes: Selected Legal Theories
Congress has no power under the commerce clause over “noneconomic, violent criminal conduct” that does not cross state lines said Chief Justice William Rehnquist in United States v. Morrison. Congress, however, enjoys additional legislative powers under the spending clauses and the legislative clauses of the Thirteenth and Fifteenth Amendments. Extensive, if something less than all encompassing, national legislation may be possible under the confluence of authority conveyed by the commerce clause, spending clause, and the legislative clauses of the constitution’s Reconstruction Amendments, provided the limitations of the First, Sixth and Tenth Amendments are observed.
Standards For Retroactive Application Based Upon Groundbreaking Supreme Court Decisions in Criminal Law
This report discusses the Supreme Court decision to announce the “new rule”, supreme courts decision that addresses an issue of law in a new way or for the first time. In criminal law new rules apply prospectively, but they also apply retroactively sometimes.
Assassination Ban and E.O. 12333: A Brief Summary
This report offers a brief summary of the assassination ban contained in Executive Order (E.O.) 12333, Section 2.11. E.O. 12333 is the latest in a series of three executive orders which included assassination bans. The first, Executive Order 11905, Sec. 5(g),1 41 Fed. Reg. 7703, 7733 (President Gerald Ford, 2/19/76), was part of an executive order issued by President Ford in response to concerns raised in the 1970's with respect to alleged abuses by the U.S. intelligence community.
Trying Terrorists as War Criminals
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Trying Terrorists as War Criminals
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Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
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Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
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Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
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Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
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Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
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Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
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Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
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Latin America: Terrorism Issues
This report discusses terrorism in the region tri-border area (TBA) of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay has been a regional hub for Hizballah and Hamas fundraising activities. The report also examines activity by Cuba, which has been designated by the State Department as a state sponsor of terrorism since 1982, and asserts that Venezuela has virtually ceased its cooperation in the global war on terror.
Latin America: Terrorism Issues
This report discusses terrorism in the region tri-border area (TBA) of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay has been a regional hub for Hizballah and Hamas fundraising activities. The report also examines activity by Cuba, which has been designated by the State Department as a state sponsor of terrorism since 1982, and asserts that Venezuela has virtually ceased its cooperation in the global war on terror.
Latin America: Terrorism Issues
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Latin America: Terrorism Issues and Implications for U.S. Policy
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Trends in Terrorism: 2006
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DNA Evidence: Legislative Initiatives in the 106th Congress
DNA evidence is a powerful forensic tool in criminal cases. Its use and capabilities have increased substantially since it was first introduced in the late 1980s. That growth has led to the emergence of the following issues that were considered by the 106th Congress in legislative initiatives: eliminating the nationwide backlog of unanalyzed DNA samples, expanding the kinds of offenders who are profiled, providing opportunities for post-conviction testing of DNA evidence, and continuing development of forensic science capabilities. This report discusses those and related issues and the legislation proposed and enacted to address them. It begins by describing provisions in prior federal law and then discusses issues and the legislation proposed, including the enacted DNA Analysis Backlog Elimination Act of 2000 (H.R. 4640, which became P.L. 106-546).
Federal Crime Control: Background, Legislation, and Issues
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Internet: Status Report on Legislative Attempts to Protect Children from Unsuitable Material on the Web
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Internet: Status Report on Legislative Attempts to Protect Children from Unsuitable Material on the Web
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Internet: Status Report on Legislative Attempts to Protect Children from Unsuitable Material on the Web
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Internet: Status Report on Legislative Attempts to Protect Children from Unsuitable Material on the Web
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Money Laundering: An Abridged Overview of 18 U.S.C. 1956 and Related Federal Criminal Law
Money laundering is a federal crime, commonly understood as the process of cleansing the taint from the proceeds of crime. This report describes in detail the various aspects of money laundering in regards to federal criminal law.
Victims' Rights Amendment in the 106th Congress: Overview of Suggestions to Amend the Constitution
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Victims' Rights Amendment: Proposals to Amend the United States Constitution in the 106th Congress
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Interrogation of Detainees: Overview of the McCain Amendment
Controversy has arisen regarding U.S. treatment of enemy combatants and terrorist suspects detained in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other locations, and whether such treatment complies with related U.S. statutes and treaties. Certain provisions of the Detainee Treatment Act (DTA), first introduced by Senator John McCain, have popularly been referred to as the "McCain Amendment." This report discusses the McCain amendment and also discusses the application of the McCain Amendment by the DOD in the updated 2006 version of the Army Field Manual.
Interrogation of Detainees: Overview of the McCain Amendment
Controversy has arisen regarding U.S. treatment of enemy combatants and terrorist suspects detained in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other locations, and whether such treatment complies with related U.S. statutes and treaties. Certain provisions of the Detainee Treatment Act (DTA), first introduced by Senator John McCain, have popularly been referred to as the "McCain Amendment." This report discusses the McCain amendment and also discusses the application of the McCain Amendment by the DOD in the updated 2006 version of the Army Field Manual.
The Death Penalty: Capital Punishment Legislation in the 109th Congress
This report discusses legislation regarding the death penalty in the 109th Congress. The USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act (Reauthorization Act) contains a number of death penalty related provisions. Some create new federal capital offenses; some add the death penalty as a sentencing option in the case of preexisting federal crimes; some alter the procedural attributes of federal capital cases. Other proposals offered during the 109th Congress would have followed the same pattern: some new crimes; some new penalties for old crimes; and some procedural adjustments. Only one of the other proposals, the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, passed, although at least one House approved several others. Three proposals do not fit the pattern; they either would have abolished the death penalty as a federal sentencing alternative or would have imposed a moratorium upon executions.
The Death Penalty: Capital Punishment Legislation in the 109th Congress
This report discusses legislation regarding the death penalty in the 109th Congress. The USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act (Reauthorization Act) contains a number of death penalty related provisions. Some create new federal capital offenses; some add the death penalty as a sentencing option in the case of preexisting federal crimes; some alter the procedural attributes of federal capital cases. Other proposals offered during the 109th Congress would have followed the same pattern: some new crimes; some new penalties for old crimes; and some procedural adjustments. Only one of the other proposals, the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, passed, although at least one House approved several others. Three proposals do not fit the pattern; they either would have abolished the death penalty as a federal sentencing alternative or would have imposed a moratorium upon executions.
Gun Legislation in the 109th Congress
Congress continues to debate the efficacy and constitutionality of federal regulation of firearms and ammunition. It is a contentious debate, with strong advocates for and against the further federal regulation of firearms. Gun control advocates argue that federal regulation of firearms curbs access by criminals, juveniles, and other "high-risk" individuals, among other things. Gun control opponents deny that federal policies keep firearms out of the hands of high-risk persons; rather, they argue, controls often create burdens for law-abiding citizens and infringe upon constitutional rights provided by the Second Amendment. This report describes the details of this ongoing debate, including several pieces of legislation related to the issue.
Gun Legislation in the 109th Congress
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