O. 18 USC 641 - Public Money, Property, or Records.
"Whoever embezzles, steals, purloins, or knowingly converts to his use or the use of another, or
without authority, sells, convoys or disposes of any record, voucher, money, or thing of value of the
United States or of any department or agency thereof, or any property made or being made under
contract for the United States or any department or agency thereof; or
Whoever receives, conceals, or retains the same with the intent to convert it to his use or gain
knowing it to have been embezzled, stolen, purloined or converted--
Shall be fined not more than ,000 or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; but if the value
of such property does not exceed the sum of 0, he shall be fined not more than
imprisoned not more than one year, or both.
The word "value" means face, par, or market value, or cost price, either wholesale or retail,
whichever is greater."
This offense also has a broad interpretation. The thing of value can be anything; examples include
contraband liquor which the government had seized, military property that had been designated surplus
and set aside for disposal, unmachined duralumin (an aluminum and copper alloy), undelivered
government checks, tip money for employees of a noncommissioned officer's club, a government check
payable to the Rocky Mountain Arsenal, and scrap metal ammunition which had been left in an open
area accessible to the public. The courts do not require the government to prove that the accused
knew the property belonged to the government. The courts have used a broad definition of
"embezzles", requiring only control over the property, not the traditional position of trust that
P. 18 USC 371 - Conspiracy to Commit Offense or to Defraud United States.
"If two or more persons conspire either to commit any offense against the United States, or to
defraud the United States, or any agency thereof in any manner or for any purpose, and one or
more of such persons do any act to effect the object of the conspiracy, each shall be fined not more
than ,000 or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.
If, however, the offense, the commission of which is the object of the conspiracy, is a misdemeanor
The gist of this offense is the agreement to commit a crime. The offense is not complete until some
overt act is done in furtherance of the crime. The rationale for this offense is that the agreement
between people to commit an offense is a danger in and of itself. Even though an overt act is needed,
the substantive crime does not have to be carried out.