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18 U.S. Code § 706 - Red Cross

Whoever wears or displays the sign of the Red Cross or any insignia colored in imitation thereof for the fraudulent purpose of inducing the belief that he is a member of or an agent for the American National Red Cross; or

Whoever, whether a corporation, association or person, other than the American National Red Cross and its duly authorized employees and agents and the sanitary and hospital authorities of the armed forces of the United States, uses the emblem of the Greek red cross on a white ground, or any sign or insignia made or colored in imitation thereof or the words “Red Cross” or “Geneva Cross” or any combination of these words—

Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.

This section shall not make unlawful the use of any such emblem, sign, insignia or words which was lawful on the date of enactment of this title.

(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 732; May 24, 1949, ch. 139, § 17, 63 Stat. 92; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, § 330016(1)(E), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2146.)
Historical and Revision Notes
1948 Act

Based on section 4 of title 36, Patriotic Societies and Observances (Jan. 5, 1905, ch. 23, § 4, 33 Stat. 600; June 23, 1910, ch. 372, § 1, 36 Stat. 604).

False personation provision in first part of section was omitted here and incorporated in section 917 of this title.

Words of punishment “$250” and “six months” were substituted for “$500” and “one year” respectively as more consonant with penalties provided for similar offenses in this chapter. (See sections 701, 704, 705 of this title.)

Punishment provisions were also changed to omit reference to “misdemeanor” in view of definitive section 1 of this title.

Words “upon conviction thereof” were omitted as surplusage, because punishment can only be imposed after conviction.

Changes were made in phraseology.

1949 Act

This section [section 17] clarifies the wording of section 706 of title 18, U.S.C., to embrace all service sanitary units whether belonging to the Army, Navy, Air Force, or other branches of the Armed services. (See note to sec. 5 [of 1949 Act, set out in Legislative History note under section 244 of title 18]).

Editorial Notes
References in Text

The date of enactment of this title, referred to in text, means June 25, 1948.


1994—Pub. L. 103–322 substituted “fined under this title” for “fined not more than $250” in third par.

1949—Act May 24, 1949, included all service sanitary units.