Juvenile delinquency proceedings --
It may be deemed appropriate to proceed against the
juvenile(s) in federal
court. This process is divided into two (2) distinct methods
whether the juvenile will be treated as a juvenile delinquent or a
(adult). Juvenile adjudication is presumed appropriate unless the
establishes that prosecution as an adult is warranted. United
Juvenile Male #1, 47 F.3d 68, 71 (2d Cir. 1995); United
A.R., 38 F.3d 699, 706 (3d Cir. 1994). Prosecution by either
proceed by information, although seeking to transfer juvenile cases
status could begin with a complaint and result in an indictment if
is granted by the court. 18 U.S.C.A. § 5032 (West Supp. 1995).
Certification|B250 is not required prior to the filing of a
issuance of an arrest warrant. See United States Attorneys'
Volume III(a), Title 9-8.120. This
may come into
play when arrests are made by federal investigators and later it is
that the arrestee is a juvenile.|
The certification requirement is a prerequisite to the
subject matter jurisdiction in cases where the government proceeds
juveniles accused of performing acts which would be federal crimes
by adults. United States v. Chambers, 944 F. 2d 1253, 1259
1991), cert. denied, 502 U.S. 1112, 112 S. Ct. 1217, 117 L.
Ed. 2d 455
(1992). The information for juvenile offenders is similar to
for adult offenders, although it is a good idea to include language
charges are generally based upon the authority to proceed against
18 U.S.C.A. § 5032, as well as particularly setting forth the
The United States Attorney may wish to prosecute the juvenile
as a juvenile
delinquent rather than treating him as an adult or criminal.
the United States Attorney must be made to the United States
District Court that
(1) the juvenile court or other appropriate state court does not
jurisdiction over the juvenile with respect to the alleged act of
delinquency, (2) the state does not have available programs and
for the needs of juveniles, or (3) the offense charged is a violent
felony or an
offense described in 21 U.S.C.A. §§ 841, 952(a), 955, 959,
(2), (3); 18 U.S.C.A. § 922(p) or (x), or 18 U.S.C.A. §
924(b), (q) or
(h), and there is a substantial federal interest in the case or the
warrant the exercise of federal jurisdiction. 18 U.S.C.A. §
5032 (West Supp.
1995). The third certification reason as described in the
will probably be most appropriate when dealing with gang violence.
While Section 5032 does not define crime of violence, the
phrase is defined
in Title 18, United States Code, Section 16. Section 16 is
referred to in the
legislative history of the amendment to Section 5032. S. Rep. No.
Cong., 2d Sess. 389 & n.7, reprinted in 1984 U.S.C.C.A.N. 3182,
3529 & n.7. The
term "crime of violence" means:
- an offense that has as an element the use,
attempted use, or
threatened use of physical force against the person or property of
- any other offense that is a felony and that, by its nature,
substantial risk that physical force against the person or property
may be used in the course of committing the offense." 18 U.S.C.A.
§ 16 (West
Conspiracy to commit a violent crime is a crime of violence as
by Sections 16(b) and 5032. Conspiracies that may properly be
deemed crimes of
violence include those whose objectives are violent crimes or those
intend to use violent methods to achieve the conspiracy's goals.
States v. Doe, 49 F. 3d 859, 866 (2d Cir. 1995). A conspiracy
to commit a
non-violent crime is not a crime of violence under the applicable
See United States v. Cruz, 805 F. 2d 1464, 1475 (11th Cir.
denied, 481 U.S. 1006, 107 S. Ct. 1631, 95 L. Ed. 2d 204
conspiracies to commit drug trafficking under 21 U.S.C.A. § 846
transferrable. United States v. Baker, 10 F. 3d 1374, 1394
1993), cert. denied, ___ U.S. ___, 115 S. Ct. 330, 130 L.
Ed. 2d 289
Filing a certification in compliance with Section 5032 is a
requirement. United States v. Juvenile Male, 923 F. 2d 614,
618 (8th Cir.
1991); United States v. Brian N., 900 F. 2d 218, 222-23 &
n.8 (10th Cir.
1990); cf. United States v. Gonzalez-Cervantes, 668 F. 2d
(9th Cir. 1981) (filing certification appearing accurate on its
face is required
before proceeding under Section 5032; filing of accurate
is not a jurisdictional requirement). Section 5032 does not set
forth when the
certification must be filed. It does not state that proceedings
undertaken until a certification is filed. See,
F. 2d at 1077 n.6. Establishing factors necessary for federal
not always a prerequisite to initiating federal proceedings.
944 F. 2d at 1260. One court has ruled that the delayed filing of
government's certification at the close of its case in chief was
timely where the
defendant was at much at fault by failing to raise the issue at
of the proceedings. Id. No prejudice to the Defendant had
although the court called the government's action "regrettable
The certification may be judicially reviewed for the limited
determining compliance with Section 5032. Juvenile Male,
923 F. 2d at
617. Thus, the court may reject a certification where the
certifying party is
not a proper delegate of the Attorney General, where the
certification is not
timely filed, or where the certification fails to state that the
lack or decline jurisdiction, or lack appropriate juvenile
States v. C.G., 736 F. 2d 1474, 1477 (11th Cir. 1984). Courts
inquire into the correctness of the statements made in the
bad faith has been established on the part of the government.
1477-78. Bad faith may be indicated in decisions to prosecute
deliberately based upon race, religion, or other arbitrary
including the exercise of protected statutory and constitutional
United States v. W.P., Jr., 898 F. Supp. 845, 851 (M.D. Ala.
(quoting Wayte v. United States, 470 U.S. 598, 608, 105 S.
Ct. 1524, 1531,
84 L. Ed. 2d 547 (1985)).
The limit to certification review is explained by one court as
that falls into the category of unreviewable determinations to be
made by the
Attorney General. United States v. Vancier, 515 F. 2d 1378,
Cir.), cert. denied, 423 U.S. 857, 96 S. Ct. 107, 46 L. Ed.
2d 82 (1975).
The court noted that the Act contains no provision for judicial
review of the
Attorney General's certificate and no standards by which to
evaluate whether an
appropriate court has jurisdiction or whether adequate programs and
exist. Id. at 1380. Further, the court recognized several
where the executive branch is granted unreviewable discretion in
matters, such as the grant of immunity to compel testimony,
a proceeding is against someone believed to have participated in
and certification that an interlocutory appeal is not taken solely
Id. at 1381.
United States Attorneys are delegated the authority of the
Attorney General in charge of the Criminal Division, pursuant to 18
§§ 5032, 5036, and 28 C.F.R. § 0.57, to file
federal district court to prosecute juveniles for acts of juvenile
Memorandum from Assistant Attorney General Jo Ann Harris for all
Attorneys (July 20, 1995); See also United States v. Cuomo,
525 F. 2d
1285 (5th Cir. 1976).
It is a good practice to file documents concerning juveniles,
such as the
certification, with the style of the juvenile's initials. This
will ensure the
caption is not changed to a generic title (e.g., United States v.
if taken on appeal and the case can maintain its individuality for