Overview of Federal Criminal Cases, Fiscal Year 2020


FY 2020 Overview of Federal Criminal CasesThe United States Sentencing Commission received information on 64,659 federal criminal cases in which the offender was sentenced in fiscal year 2020. Among these cases, 64,565 involved an individual offender and 94 involved a corporation or other “organizational” offender. The Commission also received information on 5,859 cases in which the court resentenced the offender or otherwise modified the sentence that had been previously imposed. This publication provides an overview of these cases.

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A review of cases reported to the Commission in fiscal year 2020 reveal the following:

  • The 64,565 individual original cases reported to the Commission in fiscal year 2020 represent a decrease of 11,973 (15.6%) cases from fiscal year 2019, reflecting the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the work of the courts.
  • Cases involving drugs, immigration, firearms, and fraud, theft, or embezzlement accounted for 86.4% of all cases reported to the Commission.
  • Immigration cases were the most common federal crimes in fiscal year 2020 (41.1%)..
  • Drug possession cases continued a five-year downward trend, decreasing 22.0 percent from fiscal year 2019, while the number of drug trafficking cases reversed a slight upward trend from 2019—falling 17.3 percent.
  • Methamphetamine offenses were the most common drug cases. The 7,537 methamphetamine cases represented 45.7% of all drug crimes.