Senior Specialist in American Public Law
The House Judiciary Committee has approved an amended version of the Clean Up Government Act (H.R. 2572). The Senate has passed nearly identical provisions as Title II of the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act (S. 2038). Title II, however, was dropped from the bill prior to its enactment as P.L. 112-105, 126 Stat. 291 (2012). Among other things, Title II and H.R. 2572 would each:
• Expand the scope of federal mail and wire fraud statutes to reach undisclosed self-dealing by public officials—in response to Skilling.
• Amend the definition of official act for bribery purposes—to overcome the Valdes decision.
• Adjust the federal gratuities provision to reach “goodwill” gifts—in response to Sun Diamond.
• Increase the criminal penalties that attend various bribery, illegal gratuities, embezzlement statutes, and related provisions.
• Extend the statute of limitations from five to six years for several corruption offenses.
• Authorize the trial of perjury and obstruction charges in the district of the adversely effected judicial proceedings.
• Authorize the trial of multi-district cases in any district in which an act in furtherance is committed.
• Increase the number of public corruption offenses considered and wiretap predicate offenses.H.R. 2572, alone, would:
• Increase the maximum penalties under the federal bribery and illegal gratuities statute.
• Amend the federal law criminalizing the theft or embezzlement of federal property to include property of the District of Columbia.
• Limit the prosecution of bribery and illegal gratuity cases under 18 U.S.C. 201 to cases involving $1,000 or more.This report is available in an abridged version, as CRS Report R42015, Prosecution of Public Corruption: An Abridged Overview of Amendments Under H.R. 2572 and S. 2038, by Charles Doyle, which lacks the footnotes, attributions, and citations to authority found in this report. Related CRS Reports include CRS Report R40852, Deprivation of Honest Services as a Basis for Federal Mail and Wire Fraud Convictions, by Charles Doyle, and CRS Report R41930, Mail and Wire Fraud: A Brief Overview of Federal Criminal Law, by Charles Doyle.
Date of Report: April 11, 2012
Number of Pages: 25
Order Number: R42016
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