Intellectual property (IP) offenses are increasingly costly and dangerous
to Americans and growing in frequency. Such offenses include not only
the piracy and theft of American copyrights in songs, software, and films
but also the distribution of potentially hazardous counterfeit goods,
such as pharmaceuticals and batteries, to American consumers.
The Department of Justice is charged with enforcing a wide variety of federal criminal laws that protect intellectual property and the reliability of trademarked goods. To confront and to curtail the growth in intellectual property crimes, then-Attorney General John Ashcroft established the Department of Justice's Task Force on Intellectual Property on March 31, 2004. The task force was charged with evaluating the Department's IP enforcement efforts and developing new proposals and initiatives to bolster those efforts. The Office of Legal Policy (OLP) played a significant role on the Task Force, working primarily to identify potential areas for legislation that would facilitate enhanced enforcement. The Task Force issued its report in October 2004. In February 2005, then-Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales appointed new members to the Task Force and directed it to implement the recommendations in the October 2004 report. OLP has continued to focus on legislative reforms such as the Stop Counterfeiting in Manufactured Goods Act, which the President signed on March 16, 2006. To enhance protections for copyrights and other intellectual property further still, the Department transmitted the proposed Intellectual Property Protection Act of 2007 to Congress on May 14, 2007.
Letters transmitting the Intellectual Property Protection Act of 2007 to Congress (May 14, 2007)
Progress Report of the Department of Justice's Task Force on Intellectual Property (June 2006)
Report of the Department of Justice's Task Force on Intellectual Property (October 2004)