All Agencies, Latest Month All Agencies, Current FY Geographic Distribution
of Convictions for
All Agencies, FY 2014
3 Prosecutions
in May 2014
31 Prosecutions
in Fiscal Year 2014
4 Convictions
in May 2014
27 Convictions
in Fiscal Year 2014

CITE

    18 USC Sec. 1703                                            01/05/2009

EXPCITE

    TITLE 18 - CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
    PART I - CRIMES
    CHAPTER 83 - POSTAL SERVICE

HEAD

    Sec. 1703. Delay or destruction of mail or newspapers

STATUTE

      (a) Whoever, being a Postal Service officer or employee,
    unlawfully secretes, destroys, detains, delays, or opens any
    letter, postal card, package, bag, or mail entrusted to him or
    which shall come into his possession, and which was intended to be
    conveyed by mail, or carried or delivered by any carrier or other
    employee of the Postal Service, or forwarded through or delivered
    from any post office or station thereof established by authority of
    the Postmaster General or the Postal Service, shall be fined under
    this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.
      (b) Whoever, being a Postal Service officer or employee,
    improperly detains, delays, or destroys any newspaper, or permits
    any other person to detain, delay, or destroy the same, or opens,
    or permits any other person to open, any mail or package of
    newspapers not directed to the office where he is employed; or
      Whoever, without authority, opens, or destroys any mail or
    package of newspapers not directed to him, shall be fined under
    this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

SOURCE

    (June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 778; May 24, 1949, ch. 139, Sec.
    37, 63 Stat. 95; Pub. L. 91-375, Sec. 6(j)(16), Aug. 12, 1970, 84
    Stat. 778; Pub. L. 103-322, title XXXIII, Sec. 330016(1)(B), (G),
    Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2146, 2147.)

HISTORICAL AND REVISION NOTES

                                 1948 ACT
      Based on title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., Secs. 318, 319 (Mar. 4,
    1909, ch. 321, Secs. 195, 196, 35 Stat. 1125, 1126).
      Section consolidated sections 318 and 319 of said title 18,
    U.S.C., 1940 ed. The embezzlement and theft provisions of each were
    incorporated in sections 1709 and 1710 of this title.
      Minor changes were made in phraseology.
                                 1949 ACT
      This section [section 37] corrects typographical errors in
    section 1703 of title 18, U.S.C.
                                AMENDMENTS
      1994 - Pub. L. 103-322 substituted "fined under this title" for
    "fined not more than $500" in subsec. (a) and "fined under this
    title" for "fined not more than $100" in last par.
      1970 - Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 91-375, Sec. 6(j)(16)(A), amended
    subsec. (a) generally, which prior to amendment read as follows:
    "Whoever, being a postmaster or Postal Service employee, unlawfully
    detains, delays, or opens any letter, postal card, package, bag, or
    mail intrusted to him or which shall come into his possession, and
    which was intended to be conveyed by mail, or carried or delivered
    by any carrier or other employee of the Postal Service, or
    forwarded through or delivered from any post office or station
    thereof established by authority of the Postmaster General; or
    secretes, or destroys any such letter, postal card, package, bag,
    or mail, shall be fined not more than $500 or imprisoned not more
    than five years, or both."
      Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 91-375, Sec. 6(j)(16)(B), substituted
    "Postal Service officer or employee" for "postmaster or Postal
    Service employee".
      1949 - Subsec. (a). Act May 24, 1949, Sec. 37(a), substituted
    "secretes" for "secrets".
      Subsec. (b). Act May 24, 1949, Sec. 37(b), substituted
    "newspapers" for "newspaper".
                     EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1970 AMENDMENT
      Amendment by Pub. L. 91-375 effective within 1 year after Aug.
    12, 1970, on date established therefor by Board of Governors of
    United States Postal Service and published by it in Federal
    Register, see section 15(a) of Pub. L. 91-375, set out as an
    Effective Date note preceding section 101 of Title 39, Postal
    Service.
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