Overview of Federal Criminal Cases, Fiscal Year 2013


FY 2013 Overview of Federal Criminal CasesThe United States Sentencing Commission received information on 80,207 federal criminal cases in which the offender was sentenced in fiscal year 2013. Among these cases, 80,035 involved an individual offender and 172 involved a corporation or other “organizational” offender. This publication provides a brief overview of those cases.

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Key Findings

A review of cases reported to the Commission in fiscal year 2013 reveal the following:

  • Over the last decade, the number of these cases has generally increased each year, however, in fiscal year 2013 the number of these cases reported to the Commission fell by 4,138 (4.9%), the second consecutive year in which the number of individual offender cases declined.

  • For the last five years, immigration cases have comprised the largest single type of serious federal offenses. In fiscal year 2013, however, drug crimes regained their historical place as the most common federal offenses. In fiscal year 2013, 25,000 drug cases were reported to the Commission, accounting for 31.2 percent of all cases.

  • Immigration cases also accounted for 31.2 percent of the total federal caseload in fiscal year, despite a second annual decrease in the number of these cases.

  • In fiscal year 2013, 44.9 percent of all offenders were non-citizens, about the same rate as five years ago (44.7% in fiscal year 2009).

  • The vast majority of offenders plead guilty. In fiscal year 2013, 96.9 percent of all convicted defendants pleaded guilty.

  • Most federal offenders convicted of a felony or Class A misdemeanor receive a sentence of incarceration. In fiscal year 2013, an imprisonment sentence was imposed on 87.6 percent of all offenders.