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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.
S 350: Environmental Crimes Enforcement Act of 2011
A bill to require restitution for victims of criminal violations of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, and for other purposes.
Section 3663A of Title 18, U.S. Code, mandates that those convicted of certain crimes pay restitution to the victims of those crimes. This bill, which is substantially similar to S. 3466 from the 111th Congress, would add a wide range of conduct prohibited by the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, commonly known as the Clean Water Act, to the list of crimes for which restitution must be ordered as part of the sentence. Because restitution would be mandatory, federal courts would not have the discretionary authority to decide in any case that justice does not require or is contrary to ordering restitution. Under 33 U.S.C 3319(c), any person who “negligently” or “knowingly” violates a number of provisions of the Clean Water Act can be prosecuted. In addition, any person who “knowingly” violates any of those provisions and “who knows at the time that he thereby places another person in imminent danger of death or serious bodily injury” is subject to increased punishment.
Leahy (D - VT)
05/19/2011: Placed on Senate calendar
05/19/2011: Reported to Senate by Senate Judiciary Committee
02/15/2011: Referred to Senate Judiciary Committee