34 USC 20142: Closed circuit televised court proceedings for victims of crime
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34 USC 20142: Closed circuit televised court proceedings for victims of crime Text contains those laws in effect on June 22, 2024

§20142. Closed circuit televised court proceedings for victims of crime

(a) In general

Notwithstanding any provision of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure to the contrary, in order to permit victims of crime to watch criminal trial proceedings in cases where the venue of the trial is changed-

(1) out of the State in which the case was initially brought; and

(2) more than 350 miles from the location in which those proceedings originally would have taken place;

the trial court shall order closed circuit televising of the proceedings to that location, for viewing by such persons the court determines have a compelling interest in doing so and are otherwise unable to do so by reason of the inconvenience and expense caused by the change of venue.

(b) Limited access

(1) Generally

No other person, other than official court and security personnel, or other persons specifically designated by the court, shall be permitted to view the closed circuit televising of the proceedings.

(2) Exception

The court shall not designate a person under paragraph (1) if the presiding judge at the trial determines that testimony by that person would be materially affected if that person heard other testimony at the trial.

(c) Restrictions

(1) The signal transmitted pursuant to subsection (a) shall be under the control of the court at all times and shall only be transmitted subject to the terms and conditions imposed by the court.

(2) No public broadcast or dissemination shall be made of the signal transmitted pursuant to subsection (a). In the event any tapes are produced in carrying out subsection (a), such tapes shall be the property of the court and kept under seal.

(3) Any violations of this subsection, or any rule or order made pursuant to this section, shall be punishable as contempt of court as described in section 402 of title 18.

(d) Donations

The Administrative Office of the United States Courts may accept donations to enable the courts to carry out subsection (a).

(e) Construction

(1) 1 Nothing in this section shall be construed-

(i) to create in favor of any person a cause of action against the United States or any officer or employees thereof, or

(ii) to provide any person with a defense in any action in which application of this section is made.

(f) "State" defined

As used in this section, the term "State" means any State, the District of Columbia, or any possession or territory of the United States.

(g) Rules

The Judicial Conference of the United States, pursuant to its rule making authority under section 331 of title 28, may promulgate and issue rules, or amend existing rules, to effectuate the policy addressed by this section. Upon the implementation of such rules, this section shall cease to be effective.

(h) Effective date

This section shall only apply to cases filed after January 1, 1995.

( Pub. L. 104–132, title II, §235, Apr. 24, 1996, 110 Stat. 1246 .)

Editorial Notes

References in Text

The Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, referred to in subsec. (a), are set out in the Appendix to Title 18, Crimes and Criminal Procedure.


Section was formerly classified to section 10608 of Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare, prior to editorial reclassification and renumbering as this section.

1 So in original. No par. (2) has been enacted.