Federal Hate Crime Statutes

U.S. constitution

Criminal Statues
Federal Hate Crime Statutes

44599882 young african american man looking at camera holding cardboard sign equality human rights activist
Young African American man looking at camera holding cardboard sign: Equality. Human rights activist. Demonstration concept.

According to Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241 (n.d.), commonly referred to as the Conspiracy Against Rights statute, it is considered unlawful for a minimum of two individuals to conspire with the intention to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any person within a state, territory, or district (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241, n.d.). This conspiracy aims to obstruct the targeted individual’s free exercise or enjoyment of rights and privileges that are safeguarded by the Constitution or the laws of the United States (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241, n.d.). This prohibition encompasses situations where such actions are motivated by the fact that the person has previously exercised these protected rights.

Additionally, this statute also deems it illegal for two or more individuals to deliberately disguise themselves and then venture onto a highway or another person’s premises (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241, n.d.). The underlying purpose of this action is to hinder or prevent the individual’s unrestrained exercise or enjoyment of their constitutionally secured rights (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241, n.d.).

The penalties for violations of this statute can range from fines to imprisonment for up to ten years, or a combination of both (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241, n.d.). In more severe instances where the prohibited activities result in the death of an individual, or involve offenses such as kidnapping, attempted kidnapping, aggravated sexual abuse, attempted aggravated sexual abuse, or attempted murder, the penalties can include fines as specified in the statute. The offender may face imprisonment for any duration up to a lifetime, or even be subject to the possibility of receiving a death sentence (Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241, n.d.).

Disclaimer: This is not legal advice – always seek an Attorney.

Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241. (n.d.). Conspiracy Against Rights. Retrieved from https://www.elon.edu/u/oieed/faculty-and-staff-resources/university-state-and-federal-policy/federal-hate-crime-statutes/