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"Overcriminalization" describes the trends in America - and particulary in Congress - to use the criminal law to "solve" every problem, punish every mistake (instead of making proper use of civil penalties), and coerce Americans into conforming their behavior to satisfy social engineering objectives.

HR 2964: Captive Primate Safety Act

Official Title

A bill to amend the Lacey Act Amendments of 1981 to treat nonhuman primates as prohibited wildlife species under that Act, to make corrections in the provisions relating to captive wildlife offenses under that Act, and for other purposes.


This bill, a companion to S. 1498, would extend the protections and prohibitions of the Lacey Act, including its criminal provisions, to apply to “any nonhuman primate.” In addition, the bill would broaden the Lacey Act to cover “Captive Wildlife Offenses”—i.e., acting “to import, export, transport, sell, receive, acquire, or purchase in interstate or foreign commerce any live animal of any prohibited wildlife species.” Knowing violations would be punishable by criminal fines of up to $20,000 per animal and imprisonment of up to 5 years.

Legislation Details

Johnson (R - TX)


06/17/2008: House Passage
06/17/2008: Reported to House
07/10/2007: Referred to House Natural Resources Committee