Restriction periods for donors’ crimes

Last year, Congressional Research Service published a thorough guide to statute of limitations terms for federal crimes. Since SAA’s bound to be looking again at restrictions on access in light of the president’s mild-mannered post about BC’s shenanigans, it might be of some use to see how restrictions on access already protect donors from unwitting confession of certain crimes:

You could release your donor’s financial records after six years plus one day, even if he’s nervous about having committed the following crimes:

  • 18 U.S.C. 1348 (securities and commodities fraud)
  • 15 U.S.C. 78ff(a) (Securities Exchange Act violations)
  • 15 U.S.C. 77x (Securities Act violations)
  • 26 U.S.C. 6531 (tax crimes)
     
    If you’ve got oral histories from the Klan, you’d really better sit on those for seven years plus one day, to allow these bad boys to expire:

  • 18 U.S.C. 247 (damage to religious property)
  • 18 U.S.C. 249 (hate crime not resulting in death)
     
    Sure their friends are maybe in jail, but every hate crime carries dozens of unindicted co-conspirators. Some of those people have to be family history buffs.

    Keep papers closed for eight years plus one day for pipeline tampering (49 U.S.C. 60123(b)), aircraft piracy (49 U.S.C. 46502), going to work on nuclear weapons at Natanz (18 U.S.C. 832), or kidnapping congressmen (18 U.S.C. 351).

    It’s ten years and a day for all kinds of embezzlement and bank fraud, but also for:

  • 18 U.S.C. 1542 (false statement in application and use of passport) (or conspiracy to commit)
  • 18 U.S.C. 1583 (enticement into slavery)
  • 18 U.S.C. 2442 (recruiting or using child soldiers)
  • 42 U.S.C. 2274 (communication of restricted data)
  • 42 U.S.C. 2275 (receipt of restricted data)
  • 42 U.S.C. 2276 (tampering with restricted data)
     
    It would be immensely helpful if we could rationalize federal statutes of limitations to eliminate the 20-year period for violations of 18 U.S.C. 668 (major art theft). Make it life or ten years, please.

    Ah yes, life. For heinous crimes, other than slave trafficking or recruiting child soldiers I guess, there is no statute of limitations. So if the guys in your oral history collections ever committed:

  • 18 U.S.C. 37 (violence at international airports where death results)
  • 18 U.S.C. 242 (deprivation civil rights under color of law where death results)
  • 18 U.S.C. 247 (obstruction of the exercise of religious beliefs where death results)
  • 18 U.S.C. 249 (hate crime resulting in death)
  • 18 U.S.C. 844(d) (use of fire or explosives unlawfully where death results)
     
    or the strangely phrased

  • 18 U.S.C. 1091 (genocide where death results)
     
    don’t worry, you can always rely on archivists’ privilege.

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