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H.R. 1435 (ih) To authorize the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to award grants to provide for a national toll-free hotline to provide information and assistance to veterans. [Introduced in House] ...


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108th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 1434

    To permit expungement of records of certain nonviolent criminal 
                               offenses.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                             March 25, 2003

  Mr. Rangel introduced the following bill; which was referred to the 
                       Committee on the Judiciary

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
    To permit expungement of records of certain nonviolent criminal 
                               offenses.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Second Chance for Ex-Offenders Act 
of 2003''.

SEC. 2. EXPUNGEMENT OF CRIMINAL RECORDS FOR CERTAIN NONVIOLENT 
              OFFENDERS.

    (a) In General.--Chapter 229 of title 18, United States Code, is 
amended by inserting after subchapter C the following new subchapter:

                      ``SUBCHAPTER D--EXPUNGEMENT

        ``Sec.
        ``3631. Expungement of certain criminal records in limited 
                            circumstances.
        ``3632. Requirements for expungement.
        ``3633. Procedure for expungement.
        ``3634. Effect of expungement.
        ``3635. Reversal of expunged records.
        ``3636. Unsealing of records.
``Sec. 3631. Expungement of certain criminal records in limited 
              circumstances
    ``(a) In General.--Any individual convicted of an nonviolent 
offense who fulfills the requirements of section 3632 may file a 
petition under this subchapter to expunge the record of such 
conviction.
    ``(b) Definition of Nonviolent Offense.--In this subchapter, the 
term `nonviolent offense' means a misdemeanor or felony offense against 
the United States that does not have as an element of the offense the 
use of a weapon or violence and which did not actually involve violence 
in its commission.
``Sec. 3632. Requirements for expungement
    ``No individual shall be eligible for expungement under this 
subchapter unless, before filing a petition under this subchapter, such 
individual--
            ``(1) has never been convicted of a violent offense 
        (including an offense under State law that would be a violent 
        offense if it were Federal) other than the one for which 
        expungement is sought;
            ``(2) has fulfilled all requirements of the sentence of the 
        court in which conviction was obtained, including completion of 
        any term of imprisonment or period of probation, meeting all 
        conditions of a supervised release, and paying all fines;
            ``(3) has remained free from dependency on or abuse of 
        alcohol or a controlled substance a minimum of 1 year and has 
        been rehabilitated, to the satisfaction of the court referred 
        to in section 3633(b), if so required by the terms of a 
        supervised release;
            ``(4) has obtained a high school diploma or completed a 
        high school equivalency program; and
            ``(5) has completed at least one year of community service, 
        as determined by the court referred to in section 3633(b).
``Sec. 3633. Procedure for expungement
    ``(a) Definition of Satisfaction of the Court.--In this subchapter, 
the term `satisfaction of the court' means the individual has met all 
conditions required at sentencing and conditions of probation by the 
court in which the conviction was obtained.
    ``(b) Petition.--An individual may file a petition for expungement 
at the satisfaction of the court in which the conviction was obtained 
if convicted of a felony and at the satisfaction of the court in which 
the conviction was obtained if convicted of a misdemeanor. A petition 
under this chapter may be made to the United States district court for 
the district in which the conviction was obtained. A copy of the 
petition shall be served by the court upon the United States Attorney 
for the district in which the conviction sought to be expunged was 
obtained. Not later than 60 days after receipt of such petition, the 
United States Attorney may submit written recommendations to the court 
and notify the petitioner of that recommendation.
    ``(c) Court-Ordered Expungement.--The court, after consideration of 
evidence submitted by the petitioner in support of the petition and any 
evidence submitted by the Government in support of objections it may 
have to granting the petition, shall rule on the petition. In making 
that ruling the court, after determining whether the petitioner meets 
the eligibility requirements of this subchapter, shall weigh the 
interests of the petitioner against the best interests of justice and 
public safety.
``Sec. 3634. Effect of expungement
    ``(a) In General.--An order granting expungement under this 
subchapter shall restore the individual concerned, in the contemplation 
of the law, to the status such individual occupied before the arrest or 
institution of criminal proceedings for the crime that was the subject 
of the expungement.
    ``(b) No Disqualification; Statements.--After an order granting 
expungement of any individual's criminal records under this subchapter, 
such individual shall not be required to divulge information pertaining 
to the expunged conviction and the fact that such individual has been 
convicted of the criminal offense concerned shall not--
            ``(1) operate as a disqualification of such individual to 
        pursue or engage in any lawful activity, occupation, 
        profession, and
            ``(2) held under any provision of law guilty of perjury, 
        false answering, or making a false statement by reason of his 
        failure to recite or acknowledge such arrest or institution of 
        criminal proceedings, or results thereof, in response to an 
        inquiry made of him for any purpose.
    ``(c) Records Expunged or Sealed.--Upon order of expungement, all 
official law enforcement and court records, including all references to 
such person's arrest for the offense, the institution of criminal 
proceedings against him, and the results thereof, except publicly 
available court opinions or briefs on appeal, shall be expunged (in the 
case of nontangible records) or gathered together and sealed (in the 
case of tangible records).
    ``(d) Record of Disposition To Be Retained.--A nonpublic record of 
a disposition or conviction that is the subject of an expungement order 
shall be retained only by the Department of Justice solely for the 
purpose of use by the courts in any subsequent adjudication.
``Sec. 3635. Disclosure of expunged records
    ``(a) Law Enforcement Purposes.--The Department of Justice may 
maintain a nonpublic manual or computerized index of expunged records 
containing only the name of, and alphanumeric identifiers that relate 
to, the persons who are the subject of such expunged records, the word 
`expunged', and the name of the person, agency, office, or department 
that has custody of the expunged records, and shall not name the 
offense committed. The index shall be made available only to Federal 
and State law enforcement personnel who have custody of such expunged 
records and only for the purposes set forth in subsection (b) of this 
section.
    ``(b) Authorized Disclosure.--Such records shall be made available 
to the person accused or to such person's designated agent and shall be 
made available to--
            ``(1) any prosecutor, law enforcement agency, or court 
        which has responsibility for criminally investigating, 
        prosecuting, or adjudicating such individual;
            ``(2) any State or local office or agency with 
        responsibility for the issuance of licenses to possess guns 
        where the accused has made application for such license; or
            ``(3) any prospective city, State, or Federal employer or 
        agency, involved in investigating and/or prosecuting under 
        criminal or civil statutes including employers of police or 
        peace officers and in relation to an application for employment 
        as an employee of a city, State, or Federal employer or agency 
        involved in investigating or prosecuting under criminal or 
        civil statutes including as a police officer or peace officer, 
        and every person who is an applicant for the position of police 
        officer, peace officer, or any other prospective city, State, 
        or Federal employer or agency, involved in investigating or 
        prosecuting under criminal or civil statutes shall be furnished 
        with a copy of all records obtained under this paragraph and 
        afforded an opportunity to make an explanation thereto.
    ``(c) Punishment for Improper Disclosure.--Any person who knowingly 
disseminates information relating to an expunged conviction other than 
the offender shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more 
than one year, or both.
``Sec. 3636. Reversal of expunged records
    ``The records expunged under this subchapter shall be restored by 
operation of law as public records and may be used in all court 
proceedings if the individual whose conviction was expunged is 
subsequently convicted of any Federal or State offense.''.
    (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of subchapters at the beginning 
of chapter 229 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at 
the end the following item:

``D.  Expungement...........................................    3631''.
    (d) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this Act shall apply to 
individuals convicted of an offense before, on, or after the date of 
enactment of this Act.
                                 <all>

Pages: 1

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