Establishes the class E felony of criminal use of public records for the intentional use of any public record in the course of or in furtherance of the commission of a crime.
Ayes (59): Addabbo, Avella, Ball, Bonacic, Boyle, Breslin, Carlucci, DeFrancisco, Diaz, Dilan, Espaillat, Farley, Felder, Flanagan, Fuschillo, Gallivan, Gianaris, Gipson, Golden, Griffo, Grisanti, Hannon, Hassell-Thomps, Hoylman, Kennedy, Klein, Krueger, Lanza, Larkin, Latimer, LaValle, Libous, Little, Marcellino, Marchione, Martins, Maziarz, Nozzolio, O'Brien, Peralta, Perkins, Ranzenhofer, Ritchie, Rivera, Robach, Sampson, Sanders, Savino, Serrano, Seward, Skelos, Smith, Squadron, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousin, Tkaczyk, Valesky, Young, Zeldin
Nays (1): Montgomery
Excused (3): Adams, O'Mara, Parker
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the penal law, in relation to criminal use of public records
PURPOSE: To create a new category of crime for the use of government documents for the purpose of advancing criminal activity.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section one amends the penal law by adding two new sections; 240.77 and 240.79. New section 240.77 defines the term "record" for purposes of new section 240.79. The term "record" has the same meaning as in public officers law section 86(4). New section 240.79 provides that it is a class "E" felony for a person to intentionally obtain records through the Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) with the intent to use such records in the commission of a crime and uses or attempts to use such records as an instrumentality in the commission a crime or in the commission or furtherance of a crime.
Section two provides the effective date.
EXISTING LAW: Currently, persons who use records obtained pursuant to FOIL as an instrumentality in the commission of a crime or in commission of furtherance of a crime is not subject to criminal penalties under the penal law.
JUSTIFICATION: The Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) is based on the ideal that "a free society is maintained when government is responsive and responsible to the public, and when the public is aware of governmental actions." It was this idea of open access to government documents that has, unfortunately, come under abuse by convicts and others with questionable and/or harmful motives.
Recently, there has been an increase in instances where unscrupulous individuals use FOIL to gain personal data on unsuspecting citizens. The crime of identity theft is more offensive when government documents are used because the perpetrators are abusing a freedom we all enjoy. The use of government documents in this manner is unacceptable and should be prevented.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2012: S.2168 - Referred to Codes 2011: S.2168 Passed Senate 2009-10: S.1578 - Referred to Codes both years 2007-08: S.158 - Passed Senate both years 2006: S.1823-A - Passed Senate 2005: S.1823 - Passed Senate 2003-04: S.3962 - Passed Senate both years
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the first day of November next succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2748 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 23, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. GOLDEN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Codes AN ACT to amend the penal law, in relation to criminal use of public records THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The penal law is amended by adding two new sections 240.77 and 240.79 to read as follows: S 240.77 CRIMINAL USE OF PUBLIC RECORDS; DEFINITION. FOR THE PURPOSES OF SECTION 240.79 OF THIS ARTICLE, "RECORD" SHALL HAVE THE SAME MEANING ASCRIBED TO SUCH TERM BY SUBDIVISION FOUR OF SECTION EIGHTY-SIX OF THE PUBLIC OFFICERS LAW. S 240.79 CRIMINAL USE OF PUBLIC RECORDS. A PERSON IS GUILTY OF CRIMINAL USE OF PUBLIC RECORDS WHEN HE OR SHE INTENTIONALLY OBTAINS ANY RECORD, WITH THE INTENT TO USE SUCH RECORD IN THE COMMISSION OF A CRIME, THROUGH THE PROCESS PROVIDED PURSUANT TO THE PUBLIC OFFICERS LAW, AND ATTEMPTS TO USE OR USES SUCH RECORD IN THE COURSE OF, IN FURTHERANCE OF, OR AS AN INSTRUMENTALITY IN THE COMMISSION OF A CRIME. CRIMINAL USE OF PUBLIC RECORDS IS A CLASS E FELONY. S 2. This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeed- ing the date on which it shall have become a law.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD07386-01-3