CHAPTER TWO - PART E - OFFENSES INVOLVING CRIMINAL ENTERPRISES AND RACKETEERING

2. EXTORTIONATE EXTENSION OF CREDIT

§2E2.1. Making or Financing an Extortionate Extension of Credit; Collecting an Extension of Credit by Extortionate Means

(a) Base Offense Level: 20

(b) Specific Offense Characteristics

(1) (A) If a firearm was discharged increase by 5 levels; or

(B) if a dangerous weapon (including a firearm) was otherwise used, increase by 4 levels; or

(C) if a dangerous weapon (including a firearm) was brandished or possessed, increase by 3 levels.

(2) If any victim sustained bodily injury, increase the offense level according to the seriousness of the injury:

    Degree of Bodily Injury Increase in Level

Degree of Bodily Injury Increase in Level
(A) Bodily Injury add 2
(B) Serious Bodily Injury add 4
(C) Permanent or Life-Threatening Bodily Injury add 6

(D) If the degree of injury is between that specified in subdivisions (A) and (B), add 3 levels; or

(E) If the degree of injury is between that specified in subdivisions (B) and (C), add 5 levels.

    Provided, however, that the combined increase from (1) and (2) shall not exceed 9 levels.

(3) (A) If any person was abducted to facilitate commission of the offense or to facilitate escape, increase by 4 levels; or

(B) if any person was physically restrained to facilitate commission of the offense or to facilitate escape, increase by 2 levels.

(c) Cross Reference

(1) If a victim was killed under circumstances that would constitute murder under 18 U.S.C. § 1111 had such killing taken place within the territorial or maritime jurisdiction of the United States, apply §2A1.1 (First Degree Murder).

Commentary

Statutory Provisions: 18 U.S.C. §§ 892-894.

Application Notes:

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

2. See also Commentary to §2B3.2 (Extortion by Force or Threat of Injury or Serious Damage) regarding the interpretation of the specific offense characteristics.

Background: This section refers to offenses involving the making or financing of extortionate extensions of credit, or the collection of loans by extortionate means. These “loan-sharking” offenses typically involve threats of violence and provide economic support for organized crime. The base offense level for these offenses is higher than the offense level for extortion because loan sharking is in most cases a continuing activity. In addition, the guideline does not include the amount of money involved because the amount of money in such cases is often difficult to determine. Other enhancements parallel those in §2B3.2 (Extortion by Force or Threat of Injury or Serious Damage).

Historical Note: Effective November 1, 1987. Amended effective November 1, 1989 (see Appendix C, amendments 146-148); November 1, 1991 (see Appendix C, amendment 398); November 1, 1993 (see Appendix C, amendment 479); November 1, 2000 (see Appendix C, amendment 601).

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