2001 Federal Sentencing Guideline Manual

§2H4.1. Peonage, Involuntary Servitude, and Slave Trade

(a) Base Offense Level (Apply the greater):

(1) 22; or

(2) 18, if the defendant was convicted of an offense under 18 U.S.C. § 1592.

(b)Specific Offense Characteristics

(1)(A) If any victim sustained permanent or life-threatening bodily injury, increase by 4 levels; or (B) if any victim sustained serious bodily injury, increase by 2 levels.

(2)If (A) a dangerous weapon was used, increase by 4 levels; or (B) a dangerous weapon was brandished, or the use of a dangerous weapon was threatened, increase by 2 levels.

(3)If any victim was held in a condition of peonage or involuntary servitude for (A) more than one year, increase by 3 levels; (B) between 180 days and one year, increase by 2 levels; or (C) more than 30 days but less than 180 days, increase by 1 level.

(4)If any other felony offense was committed during the commission of, or in connection with, the peonage or involuntary servitude offense, increase to the greater of:

(A)2 plus the offense level as determined above, or

(B)2 plus the offense level from the offense guideline applicable to that other offense, but in no event greater than level 43.


Statutory Provisions: 18 U.S.C. §§ 241, 1581-1590, 1592.

Application Notes:

1. For purposes of this guideline—

"A dangerous weapon was used" means that a firearm was discharged, or that a firearm or other dangerous weapon was otherwise used. "The use of a dangerous weapon was threatened" means that the use of a dangerous weapon was threatened regardless of whether a dangerous weapon was present.

Definitions of "firearm," "dangerous weapon," "otherwise used," "serious bodily injury," and "permanent or life-threatening bodily injury" are found in the Commentary to §1B1.1 (Application Instructions).

2. Under subsection (b)(4), "any other felony offense" means any conduct that constitutes a felony offense under federal, state, or local law (other than an offense that is itself covered by this subpart). When there is more than one such other offense, the most serious such offense (or group of closely related offenses in the case of offenses that would be grouped together under §3D1.2(d)) is to be used. See Application Note 3 of §1B1.5 (Interpretation of References to other Offense Guidelines).

3. If the offense involved the holding of more than ten victims in a condition of peonage or involuntary servitude, an upward departure may be warranted.

Historical Note: Effective November 1, 1987. Amended effective November 1, 1995 (see Appendix C, amendment 521); May 1, 1997 (see Appendix C, amendment 542); November 1, 1997 (see Appendix C, amendment 559); May 1, 2001 (see Appendix C, amendment 612); November 1, 2001 (see Appendix C, amendment 627).