Amendment: Sections 2B5.1, 2F1.1, and 3A1.1, effective November 1, 1998 (see Amendment 587, supra), are repromulgated without change.

Reason for Amendment: This amendment implements, in a broader form, the directives to the Commission in section 6 of the Telemarketing Fraud Prevention Act of 1998, Pub. L. 105–184 ("the Act").

The Act directs the Commission to provide for "substantially increased penalties" for telemarketing frauds. It also more specifically requires that the guidelines provide "an additional appropriate sentencing enhancement, if the offense involved sophisticated means, including but not limited to sophisticated concealment efforts, such as perpetrating the offense from outside the United States," and "an additional appropriate sentencing enhancement for cases in which a large number of vulnerable victims, including but not limited to [telemarketing fraud victims over age 55], are affected by a fraudulent scheme or schemes."

This amendment responds to the directives by building upon the amendments to the fraud guideline, §2F1.1 (Fraud and Deceit), that were submitted to Congress on May 1, 1998. (See Amendment 577, supra). Those amendments added a specific offense characteristic for "mass-marketing," which is defined to include telemarketing, and a specific offense characteristic for sophisticated concealment.

This amendment broadens the "sophisticated concealment" enhancement to cover "sophisticated means" of executing or concealing a fraud offense. In addition, the amendment increases the enhancement under §3A1.1 (Hate Crime Motivation or Vulnerable Victim), for offenses that impact a large number of vulnerable victims.

This amendment also makes a conforming amendment to §2B5.1 in the definition of "United States".

In designing enhancements that may apply more broadly than the Act’s above-stated directives minimally require, the Commission acts consistently with other directives in the Act (e.g., section 6(c)(4) (requiring the Commission to ensure that its implementing amendments are reasonably consistent with other relevant directives to the Commission and other parts of the sentencing guidelines)) and with its basic mandate in sections 991 and 994 of title 28, United States Code (e.g., 28 U.S.C. § 991(b)(1)(B)) (requiring sentencing policies that avoid unwarranted disparities among similarly situated defendants)).

Pursuant to the emergency amendment authority of the Act, this amendment previously was promulgated as a temporary measure effective November 1, 1998. (See Amendment 587, supra).

Effective Date: The effective date of this amendment is November 1, 2000.