Overview of Federal Criminal Cases, Fiscal Year 2016

Summary

FY 2014 Overview of Federal Criminal CasesThe United States Sentencing Commission received information on 67,874 federal criminal cases in which the offender was sentenced in fiscal year 2016. Among these cases, 67,742 involved an individual offender and 132 involved a corporation or other “organizational” offender. The Commission also received information on 11,991 cases in which the court resentenced the offender or modified the sentence that had been previously imposed. This publication provides an overview of those cases.

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Key Findings

A review of cases reported to the Commission in fiscal year 2016 reveal the following:

  • The 67,742 individual original cases reported to the Commission in fiscal year 2016 represent a decrease of 21.4% since fiscal year 2011, the year in which the largest number of offenders were sentenced. Drug cases continued to be the most common type of federal case, accounting for 31.6% of all cases.

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  • Methamphetamine offenses continued to be the most common drug cases, representing 30.8% of all drug crimes. The proportion of methamphetamine cases has increased substantially since fiscal year 1994, when those cases accounted for only 6.4% of all drug cases.
  • Just under half (44.5%) of all drug offenders were convicted of an offense carrying a mandatory minimum penalty; however, this proportion was the lowest it has been since fiscal year 1993.
  • Immigration cases were the second most common, accounting for 29.6% of the total federal caseload. In fiscal year 2011, immigration cases were the most common federal crime—however, since that year the number of these cases has steadily declined.
  • Crimes involving firearms were the third most common offense, accounting for 10.8% of the total number of federal criminal convictions in fiscal year 2016. The average sentence imposed in firearms cases was 75 months.
  • There were 6,517 fraud cases in fiscal year 2016, accounting for 9.6% of the total federal caseload; however, this number represents a 12.2% reduction from the year before.
 

 

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