2001 Federal Sentencing Guideline Manual

§2C1.2. Offering, Giving, Soliciting, or Receiving a Gratuity

(a)Base Offense Level: 7

(b)Specific Offense Characteristics

(1)If the offense involved more than one gratuity, increase by 2 levels.

(2)(If more than one applies, use the greater):

(A) If the value of the gratuity (i) exceeded $2,000 but did not exceed $5,000, increase by 1 level; or (ii) exceeded $5,000, increase by the number of levels from the table in §2B1.1 (Theft, Property Destruction, and Fraud) corresponding to that amount.

(B)If the gratuity was given, or to be given, to an elected official or any official holding a high-level decision-making or sensitive position, increase by 8 levels.

(c)Special Instruction for Fines - Organizations

(1)In lieu of the pecuniary loss under subsection (a)(3) of §8C2.4 (Base Fine), use the value of the unlawful payment.


Statutory Provision: 18 U.S.C. § 201(c)(1). For additional statutory provision(s), see Appendix A (Statutory Index).

Application Notes:

1."Official holding a high-level decision-making or sensitive position" includes, for example, prosecuting attorneys, judges, agency administrators, supervisory law enforcement officers, and other governmental officials with similar levels of responsibility. 2.Do not apply the adjustment in §3B1.3 (Abuse of Position or Trust or Use of Special Skill).

3.In some cases, the public official is the instigator of the offense. In others, a private citizen who is attempting to ingratiate himself or his business with the public official may be the initiator. This factor may appropriately be considered in determining the placement of the sentence within the applicable guideline range.

4.Related payments that, in essence, constitute a single gratuity (e.g., separate payments for airfare and hotel for a single vacation trip) are to be treated as a single gratuity, even if charged in separate counts.

Background: This section applies to the offering, giving, soliciting, or receiving of a gratuity to a public official in respect to an official act. A corrupt purpose is not an element of this offense. An adjustment is provided where the value of the gratuity exceeded $2,000, or where the public official was an elected official or held a high-level decision-making or sensitive position.

Historical Note: Effective November 1, 1987. Amended effective November 1, 1989 (see Appendix C, amendment 121); November 1, 1991 (see Appendix C, amendment 422); November 1, 1995 (see Appendix C, amendment 534); November 1, 2001 (see Appendix C, amendment 617).