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Overview of Federal Crimes

Overview of Federal Crimes

For a long time, the likelihood of being charged with a federal offense was remote for most people. Federal crimes are commonly associated with very serious transgressions, so it’s surprising to learn that a seemingly law-abiding person has been charged and convicted of one. In recent years, however, the number of federal crimes has ballooned dramatically. It’s easier than ever to run afoul of federal laws and be charged with a federal offense.

How many federal crimes are there?

If the number of federal crimes has skyrocketed in the last few decades, how many of them are there? Incredibly, the answer isn’t clear. In the 1980s, the Justice Department attempted to calculate how many there were and arrived at an approximate total of 3,000. However, the American Bar Association took a stab at it in the following decade and determined that the number was probably much higher. To this very day, no one is sure how many federal crimes there actually are.

Why are there so many federal crimes?

There is no concise answer for why the number of federal crimes has shot up so dramatically in recent years. It’s partly because there are more federal regulations, and they are protected with federal laws. It’s also partly because lawmakers are increasingly trying to react strongly to crimes like child kidnapping and environmental disasters.

What it means for you

The bad news is that it is extremely difficult to be aware of each and every federal law that is currently on the books. After all, no one knows how many federal crimes are being committed. The best course of action is to obey the law as well as you can and adhere to a corporate legal policy, if possible. If you are charged with a federal criminal offense, retain a skilled and experienced Cleveland federal criminal attorney as quickly as possible.


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