There’s a looming problem in America’s federal criminal justice system that “gravely threatens the liberty of ordinary citizens. It’s called overcriminalization.
The problem, law professor Stephen Smith writes in a new Heritage report, “is not simply that too many criminal laws are on the books, but that they are poorly defined in ways that give unwarranted sweep to the criminal law, raising the danger of punishment absent or in excess of moral blameworthiness.”
Congress has created, on average, 56 new federal crimes each year since 2000. This has contributed injustices “that federal prosecutors have committed against people who had no reason to know their actions were wrongful, much less illegal.”
While awareness of this problem is growing, legislation to properly deal with the problem has yet to be written. Smith explains an alternative solution: Continue Reading »