§3283. Offenses against children
No statute of limitations that would otherwise preclude prosecution for an offense involving the sexual or physical abuse, or kidnaping, of a child under the age of 18 years shall preclude such prosecution during the life of the child, or for ten years after the offense, whichever is longer.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 828; Pub. L. 103–322, title XXXIII, §330018(a), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 2149; Pub. L. 108–21, title II, §202, Apr. 30, 2003, 117 Stat. 660; Pub. L. 109–162, title XI, §1182(c), Jan. 5, 2006, 119 Stat. 3126.)
Historical and Revision Notes
Based on title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., §584 (R.S. §1046; July 5, 1884, ch. 225, §2, 23 Stat. 122).
Words “customs laws” were substituted for “revenue laws,” since different limitations are provided for internal revenue violations by section 3748 of title 26, U.S.C., 1940 ed., Internal Revenue Code.
This section was held to apply to offenses under the customs laws. Those offenses are within the term “revenue laws” but not within the term “internal revenue laws”. United States v. Hirsch (1879, 100 U.S. 33, 25 L. Ed. 539), United States v. Shorey (1869, Fed. Cas. No. 16,282), and United States v. Platt (1840, Fed. Cas. No. 16,054a) applied this section in customs cases. Hence it appears that there was no proper basis for the complete elimination from section 584 of title 18, U.S.C., 1940 ed., of the reference to revenue laws.
Meaning of “revenue laws”. United States v. Norton (1876, 91 U.S. 566, 23 L.Ed. 454), quoting Webster that “revenue” refers to “The income of a nation, derived from its taxes, duties, or other sources, for the payment of the national expenses.” Quoting United States v. Mayo (1813, Fed. Cas. No. 15,755) that “revenue laws” meant such laws “as are made for the direct and avowed purpose of creating revenue or public funds for the service of the Government.”
Definition of revenue. “Revenue” is the income of a State, and the revenue of the Post Office Department, being raised by a tax on mailable matter conveyed in the mail, and which is disbursed in the public service, is as much a part of the income of the government as moneys collected for duties on imports (United States v. Bromley, 53 U.S. 88, 99, 13 L. Ed. 905).
“Revenue” is the product or fruit of taxation. It matters not in what form the power of taxation may be exercised or to what subjects it may be applied, its exercise is intended to provide means for the support of the Government, and the means provided are necessarily to be regarded as the internal revenue. Duties upon imports are imposed for the same general object and, because they are so imposed, the money thus produced is considered revenue, not because it is derived from any particular source (United States v. Wright, 1870, Fed. Cas. No. 16,770).
“Revenue law” is defined as a law for direct object of imposing and collecting taxes, dues, imports, and excises for government and its purposes (In re Mendenhall, D.C. Mont. 1935, 10 F. Supp. 122).
Act Cong. March 2, 1799, ch. 22, 1 Stat. 627, regulating the collection of duties on imports, is a revenue law, within the meaning of act Cong. April 18, 1818, ch. 70, 3 Stat. 433, providing for the mode of suing for and recovering penalties and forfeitures for violations of the revenue laws of the United States (The Abigail, 1824, Fed. Cas. No. 18).
Changes were made in phraseology.
2006—Pub. L. 109–162 inserted “, or for ten years after the offense, whichever is longer” after “of the child”.
2003—Pub. L. 108–21 substituted “Offenses against children” for “Child abuse offenses” in section catchline and amended text generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: “No statute of limitations that would otherwise preclude prosecution for an offense involving the sexual or physical abuse of a child under the age of 18 years shall preclude such prosecution before the child reaches the age of 25 years.”
1994—Pub. L. 103–322 substituted “Child abuse offenses” for “Customs and slave trade violations” as section catchline and amended text generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: “No person shall be prosecuted, tried or punished for any violation of the customs laws or the slave trade laws of the United States unless the indictment is found or the information is instituted within five years next after the commission of the offense.”