"Intentional" State of Mind
The 1986 Act changed the state of mind required to violate Sections
2511 and 2512 from "willful" to "intentional." The purpose of the amendment
to make clear that inadvertent interceptions are not crimes under Title III.
legislative history of the 1986 Act explains what is meant by the term
"Intentional" means more than that one voluntarily engaged
conduct or caused a result. Such conduct or the causing of the result must
been the person's conscious objective. A common means to describe conduct
intentional, or to say that one causes the result intentionally, is to state
it is done or accomplished "on purpose."
S.Rep. No. 541, 99th Cong., 2d Sess. 23 (1986).
Courts have imposed a higher state of mind for the use provision,
U.S.C. § 2511(1)(d), under a close reading of the statutory language
specifically requires a person know or have reason to know that "the
was obtained . . . in violation of this subsection." See, e.g.,
States v. Wuliger, 981 F.2d 1497, 1501-02 (6th Cir. 1992), cert.
denied, 510 U.S. 1191 (1994); Earley v. Smoot, 846 F. Supp. 451,
(D. Md. 1994) (noting that proof of knowledge of the unlawfulness of the
interception had been required for only the use of the interception, not the
making of it, and that the language of 18 U.S.C. § 2511(1)(a) permitted
liability for intentional conduct without a showing of disregard of a known
[cited in USAM 9-60.200]