7 U.S. Code § 7734 - Penalties for violation

§ 7734.
Penalties for violation
(a) Criminal penalties
(1) Offenses
(A) In general

A person that knowingly violates this chapter, or knowingly forges, counterfeits, or, without authority from the Secretary, uses, alters, defaces, or destroys any certificate, permit, or other document provided for in this chapter shall be fined under title 18, imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both.

(B) Movement

A person that knowingly imports, enters, exports, or moves any plant, plant product, biological control organism, plant pest, noxious weed, or article, for distribution or sale, in violation of this chapter, shall be fined under title 18, imprisoned not more than 5 years, or both.

(2) Multiple violations

On the second and any subsequent conviction of a person of a violation of this chapter under paragraph (1), the person shall be fined under title 18, imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both.

(b) Civil penalties
(1) In generalAny person that violates this chapter, or that forges, counterfeits, or, without authority from the Secretary, uses, alters, defaces, or destroys any certificate, permit, or other document provided for in this chapter may, after notice and opportunity for a hearing on the record, be assessed a civil penalty by the Secretary that does not exceed the greater of—
(A)
$50,000 in the case of any individual (except that the civil penalty may not exceed $1,000 in the case of an initial violation of this chapter by an individual moving regulated articles not for monetary gain), $250,000 in the case of any other person for each violation, $500,000 for all violations adjudicated in a single proceeding if the violations do not include a willful violation, and $1,000,000 for all violations adjudicated in a single proceeding if the violations include a willful violation; or
(B)
twice the gross gain or gross loss for any violation, forgery, counterfeiting, unauthorized use, defacing, or destruction of a certificate, permit, or other document provided for in this chapter that results in the person deriving pecuniary gain or causing pecuniary loss to another.
(2) Factors in determining civil penaltyIn determining the amount of a civil penalty, the Secretary shall take into account the nature, circumstance, extent, and gravity of the violation or violations and the Secretary may consider, with respect to the violator—
(A)
ability to pay;
(B)
effect on ability to continue to do business;
(C)
any history of prior violations;
(D)
the degree of culpability; and
(E)
any other factors the Secretary considers appropriate.
(3) Settlement of civil penalties

The Secretary may compromise, modify, or remit, with or without conditions, any civil penalty that may be assessed under this subsection.

(4) Finality of orders

The order of the Secretary assessing a civil penalty shall be treated as a final order reviewable under chapter 158 of title 28. The validity of the Secretary’s order may not be reviewed in an action to collect the civil penalty. Any civil penalty not paid in full when due under an order assessing the civil penalty shall thereafter accrue interest until paid at the rate of interest applicable to civil judgments of the courts of the United States.

(c) Liability for acts of an agent

When construing and enforcing this chapter, the act, omission, or failure of any officer, agent, or person acting for or employed by any other person within the scope of his or her employment or office, shall be deemed also to be the act, omission, or failure of the other person.

(d) Guidelines for civil penalties

The Secretary shall coordinate with the Attorney General to establish guidelines to determine under what circumstances the Secretary may issue a civil penalty or suitable notice of warning in lieu of prosecution by the Attorney General of a violation of this chapter.

References in Text

This chapter, referred to in text, was in the original “this title”, meaning title IV of Pub. L. 106–224, June 20, 2000, 114 Stat. 438, known as the Plant Protection Act, which is classified principally to this chapter. For complete classification of title IV to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 7701 of this title and Tables.

Codification

Pub. L. 110–234 and Pub. L. 110–246 made identical amendments to this section. The amendments by Pub. L. 110–234 were repealed by section 4(a) of Pub. L. 110–246.

Amendments

2008—Subsec. (b)(1)(A). Pub. L. 110–246, § 10203(d), substituted “$500,000 for all violations adjudicated in a single proceeding if the violations do not include a willful violation, and $1,000,000 for all violations adjudicated in a single proceeding if the violations include a willful violation” for “and $500,000 for all violations adjudicated in a single proceeding”.

2002—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 107–171 added subsec. (a) and struck out heading and text of former subsec. (a). Text read as follows: “Any person that knowingly violates this chapter, or that knowingly forges, counterfeits, or, without authority from the Secretary, uses, alters, defaces, or destroys any certificate, permit, or other document provided for in this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction, shall be fined in accordance with title 18, imprisoned for a period not exceeding 1 year, or both.”

Effective Date of 2008 Amendment

Amendment of this section and repeal of Pub. L. 110–234 by Pub. L. 110–246 effective May 22, 2008, the date of enactment of Pub. L. 110–234, see section 4 of Pub. L. 110–246, set out as an Effective Date note under section 8701 of this title.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of functions of the Secretary of Agriculture relating to agricultural import and entry inspection activities under this chapter to the Secretary of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.sections 231, 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of

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7 CFR - Agriculture

7 CFR Part 1 - ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS

7 CFR Part 300 - INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE

7 CFR Part 301 - DOMESTIC QUARANTINE NOTICES

7 CFR Part 302 - DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA; MOVEMENT OF PLANTS AND PLANT PRODUCTS

7 CFR Part 305 - PHYTOSANITARY TREATMENTS

7 CFR Part 318 - STATE OF HAWAII AND TERRITORIES QUARANTINE NOTICES

7 CFR Part 319 - FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES

7 CFR Part 322 - BEES, BEEKEEPING BYPRODUCTS, AND BEEKEEPING EQUIPMENT

7 CFR Part 330 - FEDERAL PLANT PEST REGULATIONS; GENERAL; PLANT PESTS; SOIL, STONE, AND QUARRY PRODUCTS; GARBAGE

7 CFR Part 340 - INTRODUCTION OF ORGANISMS AND PRODUCTS ALTERED OR PRODUCED THROUGH GENETIC ENGINEERING WHICH ARE PLANT PESTS OR WHICH THERE IS REASON TO BELIEVE ARE PLANT PESTS

7 CFR Part 351 - IMPORTATION OF PLANTS OR PLANT PRODUCTS BY MAIL

7 CFR Part 352 - PLANT QUARANTINE SAFEGUARD REGULATIONS

7 CFR Part 353 - EXPORT CERTIFICATION

7 CFR Part 354 - OVERTIME SERVICES RELATING TO IMPORTS AND EXPORTS; AND USER FEES

7 CFR Part 360 - NOXIOUS WEED REGULATIONS

7 CFR Part 380 - RULES OF PRACTICE GOVERNING PROCEEDINGS UNDER CERTAIN ACTS

9 CFR - Animals and Animal Products

9 CFR Part 94 - RINDERPEST, FOOT-AND-MOUTH DISEASE, NEWCASTLE DISEASE, HIGHLY PATHOGENIC AVIAN INFLUENZA, AFRICAN SWINE FEVER, CLASSICAL SWINE FEVER, SWINE VESICULAR...AND BOVINE SPONGIFORM ENCEPHALOPATHY: PROHIBITED AND RESTRICTED IMPORTATIONS

 

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