Statutory Law - US Code - Title 18: Chapter 45: Foreign Relations


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U.S. Code Title 18: Crimes and Criminal Procedure


Chapter 45: Foreign Relations

*Current through Public Law 112-173, August 16th, 2012.
**Selected Provisions Relevant to U.S. Intelligence Law

CHAPTER 45—FOREIGN RELATIONS

18 USC § 951. Agents of foreign governments

(a) Whoever, other than a diplomatic or consular officer or attaché, acts in the United States as an agent of a foreign government without prior notification to the Attorney General if required in subsection (b), shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.
(b) The Attorney General shall promulgate rules and regulations establishing requirements for notification.
(c) The Attorney General shall, upon receipt, promptly transmit one copy of each notification statement filed under this section to the Secretary of State for such comment and use as the Secretary of State may determine to be appropriate from the point of view of the foreign relations of the United States. Failure of the Attorney General to do so shall not be a bar to prosecution under this section.
(d) For purposes of this section, the term “agent of a foreign government” means an individual who agrees to operate within the United States subject to the direction or control of a foreign government or official, except that such term does not include—
(1) a duly accredited diplomatic or consular officer of a foreign government, who is so recognized by the Department of State;
(2) any officially and publicly acknowledged and sponsored official or representative of a foreign government;
(3) any officially and publicly acknowledged and sponsored member of the staff of, or employee of, an officer, official, or representative described in paragraph (1) or (2), who is not a United States citizen; or
(4) any person engaged in a legal commercial transaction.

(e) Notwithstanding paragraph (d)(4), any person engaged in a legal commercial transaction shall be considered to be an agent of a foreign government for purposes of this section if—
(1) such person agrees to operate within the United States subject to the direction or control of a foreign government or official; and
(2) such person—
(A) is an agent of Cuba or any other country that the President determines (and so reports to the Congress) poses a threat to the national security interest of the United States for purposes of this section, unless the Attorney General, after consultation with the Secretary of State, determines and so reports to the Congress that the national security or foreign policy interests of the United States require that the provisions of this section do not apply in specific circumstances to agents of such country; or
(B) has been convicted of, or has entered a plea of nolo contendere with respect to, any offense under section 792 through 799, 831, or 2381 of this title or under section 11 of the Export Administration Act of 1979, except that the provisions of this subsection shall not apply to a person described in this clause for a period of more than five years beginning on the date of the conviction or the date of entry of the plea of nolo contendere, as the case may be.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 743; Pub. L. 97–462, §6, Jan. 12, 1983, 96 Stat. 2530; Pub. L. 98–473, title II, §1209, Oct. 12, 1984, 98 Stat. 2164; Pub. L. 99–569, title VII, §703, Oct. 27, 1986, 100 Stat. 3205; Pub. L. 103–199, title II, §202, Dec. 17, 1993, 107 Stat. 2321; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(R), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2148.)

18 USC § 952. Diplomatic codes and correspondence

Whoever, by virtue of his employment by the United States, obtains from another or has or has had custody of or access to, any official diplomatic code or any matter prepared in any such code, or which purports to have been prepared in any such code, and without authorization or competent authority, willfully publishes or furnishes to another any such code or matter, or any matter which was obtained while in the process of transmission between any foreign government and its diplomatic mission in the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 743; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(L), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147.)

18 USC § 953. Private correspondence with foreign governments

Any citizen of the United States, wherever he may be, who, without authority of the United States, directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
This section shall not abridge the right of a citizen to apply, himself or his agent, to any foreign government or the agents thereof for redress of any injury which he may have sustained from such government or any of its agents or subjects.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 744; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(K), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147.)

18 USC § 954. False statements influencing foreign government

Whoever, in relation to any dispute or controversy between a foreign government and the United States, willfully and knowingly makes any untrue statement, either orally or in writing, under oath before any person authorized and empowered to administer oaths, which the affiant has knowledge or reason to believe will, or may be used to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government, or of any officer or agent of any foreign government, to the injury of the United States, or with a view or intent to influence any measure of or action by the United States or any department or agency thereof, to the injury of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 744; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(K), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147.)

18 USC § 956. Conspiracy to kill, kidnap, maim, or injure persons or damage property in a foreign country

(a)(1) Whoever, within the jurisdiction of the United States, conspires with one or more other persons, regardless of where such other person or persons are located, to commit at any place outside the United States an act that would constitute the offense of murder, kidnapping, or maiming if committed in the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States shall, if any of the conspirators commits an act within the jurisdiction of the United States to effect any object of the conspiracy, be punished as provided in subsection (a)(2).
(2) The punishment for an offense under subsection (a)(1) of this section is—
(A) imprisonment for any term of years or for life if the offense is conspiracy to murder or kidnap; and
(B) imprisonment for not more than 35 years if the offense is conspiracy to maim.

(b) Whoever, within the jurisdiction of the United States, conspires with one or more persons, regardless of where such other person or persons are located, to damage or destroy specific property situated within a foreign country and belonging to a foreign government or to any political subdivision thereof with which the United States is at peace, or any railroad, canal, bridge, airport, airfield, or other public utility, public conveyance, or public structure, or any religious, educational, or cultural property so situated, shall, if any of the conspirators commits an act within the jurisdiction of the United States to effect any object of the conspiracy, be imprisoned not more than 25 years.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 744; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(K), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147; Pub. L. 104–132, title VII, §704(a), Apr. 24, 1996, 110 Stat. 1294.)

18 USC § 957. Possession of property in aid of foreign government

Whoever, in aid of any foreign government, knowingly and willfully possesses or controls any property or papers used or designed or intended for use in violating any penal statute, or any of the rights or obligations of the United States under any treaty or the law of nations, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 745; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(H), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147.)

18 USC § 958. Commission to serve against friendly nation

Any citizen of the United States who, within the jurisdiction thereof, accepts and exercises a commission to serve a foreign prince, state, colony, district, or people, in war, against any prince, state, colony, district, or people, with whom the United States is at peace, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 745; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(I), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147.)

18 USC § 959. Enlistment in foreign service

(a) Whoever, within the United States, enlists or enters himself, or hires or retains another to enlist or enter himself, or to go beyond the jurisdiction of the United States with intent to be enlisted or entered in the service of any foreign prince, state, colony, district, or people as a soldier or as a marine or seaman on board any vessel of war, letter of marque, or privateer, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
(b) This section shall not apply to citizens or subjects of any country engaged in war with a country with which the United States is at war, unless such citizen or subject of such foreign country shall hire or solicit a citizen of the United States to enlist or go beyond the jurisdiction of the United States with intent to enlist or enter the service of a foreign country. Enlistments under this subsection shall be under regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the Army.
(c) This section and sections 960 and 961 of this title shall not apply to any subject or citizen of any foreign prince, state, colony, district, or people who is transiently within the United States and enlists or enters himself on board any vessel of war, letter of marque, or privateer, which at the time of its arrival within the United States was fitted and equipped as such, or hires or retains another subject or citizen of the same foreign prince, state, colony, district, or people who is transiently within the United States to enlist or enter himself to serve such foreign prince, state, colony, district, or people on board such vessel of war, letter of marque, or privateer, if the United States shall then be at peace with such foreign prince, state, colony, district, or people.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 745; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(H), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147.)

18 USC § 960. Expedition against friendly nation

Whoever, within the United States, knowingly begins or sets on foot or provides or prepares a means for or furnishes the money for, or takes part in, any military or naval expedition or enterprise to be carried on from thence against the territory or dominion of any foreign prince or state, or of any colony, district, or people with whom the United States is at peace, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 745; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(J), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147.)

18 USC § 970. Protection of property occupied by foreign governments

(a) Whoever willfully injures, damages, or destroys, or attempts to injure, damage, or destroy, any property, real or personal, located within the United States and belonging to or utilized or occupied by any foreign government or international organization, by a foreign official or official guest, shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.
(b) Whoever, willfully with intent to intimidate, coerce, threaten, or harass—
(1) forcibly thrusts any part of himself or any object within or upon that portion of any building or premises located within the United States, which portion is used or occupied for official business or for diplomatic, consular, or residential purposes by—
(A) a foreign government, including such use as a mission to an international organization;
(B) an international organization;
(C) a foreign official; or
(D) an official guest; or

(2) refuses to depart from such portion of such building or premises after a request—
(A) by an employee of a foreign government or of an international organization, if such employee is authorized to make such request by the senior official of the unit of such government or organization which occupies such portion of such building or premises;
(B) by a foreign official or any member of the foreign official's staff who is authorized by the foreign official to make such request;
(C) by an official guest or any member of the official guest's staff who is authorized by the official guest to make such request; or
(D) by any person present having law enforcement powers;

shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.
(c) For the purpose of this section “foreign government”, “foreign official”, “international organization”, and “official guest” shall have the same meanings as those provided in section 1116(b) of this title.
(Added Pub. L. 92–539, title IV, §401, Oct. 24, 1972, 86 Stat. 1073; amended Pub. L. 94–467, §7, Oct. 8, 1976, 90 Stat. 2000; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330016(1)(L), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2147; Pub. L. 104–294, title VI, §601(a)(2), Oct. 11, 1996, 110 Stat. 3498.)