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18 U.S. Code § 507 - Ship’s papers

Whoever falsely makes, forges, counterfeits, or alters any instrument in imitation of or purporting to be, an abstract or official copy or certificate of the documentation of any vessel, or a certificate of ownership, pass, or clearance, granted for any vessel, under the authority of the United States, or a permit, debenture, or other official document granted by any officer of the customs by virtue of his office; or

Whoever utters, publishes, or passes, or attempts to utter, publish, or pass, as true, any such false, forged, counterfeited, or falsely altered instrument, abstract, official copy, certificate, pass, clearance, permit, debenture, or other official document herein specified, knowing the same to be false, forged, counterfeited, or falsely altered, with an intent to defraud—

Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.

Historical and Revision Notes

Based on title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., § 129 (Mar. 4, 1909, ch. 321, § 72, 35 Stat. 1101).

The words “passport” and “sea letter” were omitted as obsolete, in view of the Presidential proclamation of April 10, 1815, discontinuing the use of such passports and sea letters.

Mandatory punishment provisions were rephrased in the alternative.

Minor changes of phraseology were made.

Editorial Notes

2006—Pub. L. 109–304 in first par. substituted “documentation of any vessel” for “recording, registry, or enrollment of any vessel, in the office of any collector of the customs, or a license to any vessel for carrying on the coasting trade or fisheries of the United States” and struck out “collector or other” after “granted by any” and in second par. struck out “license,” after “certificate,”.

1994—Pub. L. 103–322 substituted “fined under this title” for “fined not more than $1,000”.

Executive Documents
Transfer of Functions

All offices of collector of customs, comptroller of customs, surveyor of customs, and appraiser of merchandise in Bureau of Customs of Department of the Treasury to which appointments were required to be made by President with advice and consent of Senate ordered abolished, with such offices to be terminated not later than Dec. 31, 1966, by Reorg. Plan No. 1 of 1965, eff. May 25, 1965, 30 F.R. 7035, 79 Stat. 1317, set out in the Appendix to Title 5, Government Organization and Employees. All functions of offices eliminated were already vested in Secretary of the Treasury by Reorg. Plan No. 26 of 1950, eff. July 31, 1950, 15 F.R. 4935, 64 Stat. 1280, set out in the Appendix to Title 5.