THE UNITING AND STRENGTHENING AMERICA ACT OF 2001
Introduced September, 2001


Excerpts From Section-by-Section Summary
Prepared by Senate Staff:


TITLE II: ENHANCED SURVEILLANCE PROCEDURES

Sec. 201. Authority to intercept wire, oral, and electronic communications relating to terrorism. Section 201 includes as predicates for electronic surveillance under criminal procedures (Title III) additional federal statutes relating to terrorism.

Sec. 202. Authority to intercept wire, oral, and electronic communications relating to computer fraud and abuse offenses. Section 202 includes as predicate for electronic surveillance under criminal procedures (Title III) a felony violation relating to computer fraud and abuse.

Sec. 203. Authority to share criminal investigative information with intelligence officers to facilitate counterterrorism investigations. Section 203 authorizes disclosure to an intelligence officer of the United States the contents of a communication acquired by electronic surveillance under criminal procedures (Title III) to the extent that such disclosure is appropriate to the proper performance of the official duties of the officer making or receiving the disclosure.

Sec. 204. Enhanced authority for use of pen register and trap and trace devices. Section 204 amends the criminal procedures for pen registers and trap and trace devices to authorize courts to grant orders that are valid outside the jurisdiction of the court granting the order. The order could apply to any communication service provider in the United States whose assistance may facilitate execution of the order. This eliminates the need under current law to apply for new orders each time the investigation leads to another jurisdiction. The court must find, based on facts contained in the application, that the information likely to be obtained is relevant to an ongoing criminal investigation. The authorized technique must restrict the recording or decoding of information to information "identifying the origination or destination of wire and electronic communications."

Sec. 207. Roving surveillance authority under Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Section 207 eliminates current requirements under FISA to specify the facilities or places at which electronic surveillance will be directed if the court finds probable cause to believe that the target's actions could have the effect of thwarting electronic surveillance. If the judge makes such a finding, third parties such as communications carriers or landlords, who are not specified in the court order, would be obliged to furnish assistance to the government necessary to accomplish the surveillance.

Sec. 208. Duration of FISA surveillance of non-United States persons who are agents of foreign power. Section 208 enables the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to authorize the electronic surveillance for up to a year of persons, other than United States persons, who are officers and employees of foreign governments, factions of foreign nations, and entities openly acknowledged to be directed and controlled by foreign governments. The proposed change would bring the authorization period in line with that allowed for electronic surveillance of the foreign establishments for which the foreign officers and employees work. The proposed change would not affect current limitations on electronic surveillance of U.S. citizens, permanent resident aliens, or foreign nationals not employed by foreign establishments. Nor would it affect current limits on physical searches.

TITLE III: ENHANCED MONEY LAUNDERING TOOLS

Subtitle A. Modernizing and Strengthening Existing Federal Laws to Combat Money Laundering

Sec. 302. Inclusion of foreign corruption offenses as money laundering crimes. Section 302 amends 18 U.S.C. 1956(c)(7)(B) to include various foreign corruption offenses in the definition of "specified unlawful activity" for money-laundering purposes. The offenses added would include schemes to defraud foreign governments, bribery, misappropriation, theft, embezzlement, smuggling, export control violations, offenses for which the United States would be obligated to extradite the offender by a multilateral treaty, and the misuse of funds of the International Monetary Fund or other international financial institution.

Sec. 307. Charging money laundering as a course of conduct. Section 307 allows the government to charge a defendant with a series of money laundering offenses in a single count of an indictment, thus making it unnecessary to charge each individual transaction as a separate count, as is the case under current law. See, e.g., United States v. Kramer, 73 F.3d 1067 (11th Cir. 1996); United States v. Martin, 933 F.2d 609 (8th Cir. 1991). The amendment would thus allow money laundering to be charged in the same manner as other offenses, where multiple violations of a statute may be charged in a single count if they are part of a single scheme or course of conduct. See United States v. Tutino, 883 F.2d 1125, 1141 (2d Cir. 1989) (multiple narcotics sales); United States v. Margiotta, 646 F.2d 729, 733 (2d Cir. 1981) (multiple acts of mail fraud).

TITLE V: REMOVING OBSTACLES TO INVESTIGATING TERRORISM

Sec. 501. Professional Standards for Government Attorneys Act of 2001. Section 501 clarifies the attorney conduct standards governing attorneys for the Federal Government to ensure that Federal prosecutors and agents can use traditional Federal law enforcement techniques without running afoul of state bar rules. It also directs the U.S. Judicial Conference to develop national rules of professional conduct in areas where local rules may interfere with effective Federal law enforcement.

Sec. 502. Elimination of limitations period for certain terrorism offenses . Section 502 eliminates the limitations period for terrorism offenses enumerated 18 U.S.C. 3286. It would also add 18 U.S.C. 2332d (financial transactions with countries supporting international terrorism), 2339A (providing material support for terrorists), and 2339B (providing material support to foreign terrorist organizations) to the list of terrorism offenses covered by 3286.

Sec. 506. Attorney General's authority to pay rewards to combat terrorism. Section 506 authorizes the Attorney General to offer rewards ? payments to individuals who offer information pursuant to a public advertisement ? to gather information to combat terrorism and defend the nation against terrorist acts without any dollar limitation (Current law limits rewards to $2 million). Rewards of $250,000 or more require the personal approval of the Attorney General or President and notice to Congress.

Sec. 507. DNA identification of terrorists and other violent offenders. Section 507 authorizes the collection of DNA samples from any person convicted of certain terrorism-related offenses and other crimes of violence, for inclusion in the national DNA database.

TITLE VII: INCREASED INFORMATION SHARING FOR CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE PROTECTION

Subtitle A. Information Sharing Among Law Enforcement Agencies.

Sec. 712. Sharing of grand jury information with members of the intelligence community. Section 712 would add a provision to Rule 6(e)(3)(C) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure to permit the government to obtain a court order releasing grand jury material to an official of the intelligence community (as defined under section 3(4) of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 401(a)) upon a showing that the material is relevant to the interests of national security or foreign intelligence.

TITLE VIII: STRENGTHENING THE CRIMINAL LAWS AGAINST TERRORISM AND ENHANCING REGULATION OF BIOLOGICAL AND CHEMICAL WEAPONS

Sec. 801. Inclusion of acts of terrorism as racketeering activity. Section 801 amends the RICO statute to include certain terrorism statutes within the definition of "racketeering activity," thus allowing multiple acts of terrorism to be charged as a pattern of racketeering for RICO purposes. The section expands the ability of prosecutors to prosecute members of established, ongoing terrorist organizations that present the threat of continuity that the RICO statute was designed to permit prosecutors to combat.

Sec. 802. Terrorist attacks and other acts of violence against mass transportation systems. Section 802 creates a new statute (to be codified at 18 U.S.C. 1993) to make punishable acts of terrorism and other violence against mass transportation vehicles, systems, facilities, employees and passengers; the reporting of false information about such activities; and attempts and conspiracies to commit such offenses. Violations are punishable by a fine and term imprisonment of 20 years; however, the mass transportation vehicle was carrying a passenger at the time of the attack, or if death resulted from the offense, the maximum term of imprisonment is increased to life.

A separate provision of the same statute creates an offense for willfully or recklessly propelling a dangerous object or biological toxin at any mass transportation vehicle. This offense is punishable by a fine and a term of imprisonment of five years; but if the offense results in death, the maximum term of imprisonment is increased to 20 years.

Sec. 803. Expansion of the biological weapons statute. Section 803 establishes penalties for failing to report, or falsely reporting, certain information relating to biological weapons. It also proscribes the unauthorized transfers of such weapons, and the possession of such weapons by restricted individuals, including non-resident aliens from countries that sponsor terrorism.   

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