The Prosecution and Punishment of International Terrorists Under Federal Statutues

Brent L. Smith, University of Alabama - Birmingham
Kelly Damphousse, University of Oklahoma
Freedom Jackson, University of Alabama at Birmingham

This paper examines patterns of prosecution and punishment of International terrorists convicted under federal law since 1980. These changes are noted in light of significant shifts in investigatory authority, prosecutorial focus, and punishment strategies during this period. Domestic terrorists convicted under federal law during this period provides a "comparison group." Data were compiled from Smith's study of 1980s terrorist groups and supplemented with 1990s data from NIJ's and the Oklahoma City National MIPT's "American Terrorism Study." Statistical results provided include: a comparison of the types of federal charges against domestic and international terrorists; success rates for types of charges and strategies; a comparison of international terrorists convicted as a result of the 1987 "extra-territorial jurisdiction act" with those arrested in the United States; and analyses of sentencing severity for this class of offenders.

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Updated 05/20/2006