(a) Criminal acts and penalties
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, any person who knowingly violates section 1824 of this title shall, upon conviction thereof, be fined not more than $3,000, or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.
(2)(A) If any person knowingly violates section 1824 of this title, after one or more prior convictions of such person for such a violation have become final, such person shall, upon conviction thereof, be fined not more than $5,000, or imprisoned for not more than two years, or both.
(B) Any person who knowingly makes, or causes to be made, a false entry or statement in any report required under this chapter; who knowingly makes, or causes to be made, any false entry in any account, record, or memorandum required to be established and maintained by any person or in any notification or other information required to be submitted to the Secretary under section 1823 of this title; who knowingly neglects or fails to make or cause to be made, full, true, and correct entries in such accounts, records, memoranda, notification, or other materials; who knowingly removes any such documentary evidence out of the jurisdiction of the United States; who knowingly mutilates, alters, or by any other means falsifies any such documentary evidence; or who knowingly refuses to submit any such documentary evidence to the Secretary for inspection and copying shall be guilty of an offense against the United States, and upon conviction thereof shall be fined not more than $5,000, or imprisoned for not more than three years, or both.
(C) Any person who forcibly assaults, resists, opposes, impedes, intimidates, or interferes with any person while engaged in or on account of the performance of his official duties under this chapter shall be fined not more than $5,000, or imprisoned not more than three years, or both. Whoever, in the commission of such acts, uses a deadly or dangerous weapon shall be fined not more than $10,000, or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both. Whoever kills any person while engaged in or on account of the performance of his official duties under this chapter shall be punishable as provided under sections 1111 and 1112 of title 18.
(b) Civil penalties; review and enforcement
(1) Any person who violates section 1824 of this title shall be liable to the United States for a civil penalty of not more than $2,000 for each violation. No penalty shall be assessed unless such person is given notice and opportunity for a hearing before the Secretary with respect to such violation. The amount of such civil penalty shall be assessed by the Secretary by written order. In determining the amount of such penalty, the Secretary shall take into account all factors relevant to such determination, including the nature, circumstances, extent, and gravity of the prohibited conduct and, with respect to the person found to have engaged in such conduct, the degree of culpability, any history of prior offenses, ability to pay, effect on ability to continue to do business, and such other matters as justice may require.
(2) Any person against whom a violation is found and a civil penalty assessed under paragraph (1) of this subsection may obtain review in the court of appeals of the United States for the circuit in which such person resides or has his place of business or in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit by filing a notice of appeal in such court within 30 days from the date of such order and by simultaneously sending a copy of such notice by certified mail to the Secretary. The Secretary shall promptly file in such court a certified copy of the record upon which such violation was found and such penalty assessed, as provided in section 2112 of title 28. The findings of the Secretary shall be set aside if found to be unsupported by substantial evidence.
(3) If any person fails to pay an assessment of a civil penalty after it has become a final and unappealable order, or after the appropriate court of appeals has entered final judgment in favor of the Secretary, the Secretary shall refer the matter to the Attorney General, who shall recover the amount assessed in any appropriate district court of the United States. In such action, the validity and appropriateness of the final order imposing the civil penalty shall not be subject to review.
(4) The Secretary may, in his discretion, compromise, modify, or remit, with or without conditions, any civil penalty assessed under this subsection.
(c) Disqualification of offenders; orders; civil penalties applicable; enforcement procedures
In addition to any fine, imprisonment, or civil penalty authorized under this section, any person who was convicted under subsection (a) or who paid a civil penalty assessed under subsection (b) or is subject to a final order under such subsection assessing a civil penalty for any violation of any provision of this chapter or any regulation issued under this chapter may be disqualified by order of the Secretary, after notice and an opportunity for a hearing before the Secretary, from showing or exhibiting any horse, judging or managing any horse show, horse exhibition, or horse sale or auction for a period of not less than one year for the first violation and not less than five years for any subsequent violation. Any person who knowingly fails to obey an order of disqualification shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $3,000 for each violation. Any horse show, horse exhibition, or horse sale or auction, or the management thereof, collectively and severally, which knowingly allows any person who is under an order of disqualification to show or exhibit any horse, to enter for the purpose of showing or exhibiting any horse, to take part in managing or judging, or otherwise to participate in any horse show, horse exhibition, or horse sale or auction in violation of an order shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than $3,000 for each violation. The provisions of subsection (b) of this section respecting the assessment, review, collection, and compromise, modification, and remission of a civil penalty apply with respect to civil penalties under this subsection.
(d) Production of witnesses and books, papers, and documents; depositions; fees; presumptions; jurisdiction
(1) The Secretary may require by subpena the attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of books, papers, and documents relating to any matter under investigation or the subject of a proceeding. Witnesses summoned before the Secretary shall be paid the same fees and mileage that are paid witnesses in the courts of the United States.
(2) The attendance of witnesses, and the production of books, papers, and documents, may be required at any designated place from any place in the United States. In case of disobedience to a subpena the Secretary, or any party to a proceeding before the Secretary, may invoke the aid of any appropriate district court of the United States in requiring attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of such books, papers, and documents under the provisions of this chapter.
(3) The Secretary may order testimony to be taken by deposition under oath in any proceeding or investigation pending before him, at any stage of the proceeding or investigation. Depositions may be taken before any person designated by the Secretary who has power to administer oaths. The Secretary may also require the production of books, papers, and documents at the taking of depositions.
(4) Witnesses whose depositions are taken and the persons taking them shall be entitled to the same fees as paid for like services in the courts of the United States or in other jurisdictions in which they may appear.
(5) In any civil or criminal action to enforce this chapter or any regulation under this chapter a horse shall be presumed to be a horse which is sore if it manifests abnormal sensitivity or inflammation in both of its forelimbs or both of its hindlimbs.
(6) The United States district courts, the District Court of Guam, the District Court of the Virgin Islands, the highest court of American Samoa, and the United States courts of the other territories, are vested with jurisdiction specifically to enforce, and to prevent and restrain violations of this chapter, and shall have jurisdiction in all other kinds of cases arising under this chapter, except as provided in subsection (b) of this section.
(e) Detention of horses; seizure and condemnation of equipment
(1) The Secretary may detain (for a period not to exceed twenty-four hours) for examination, testing, or the taking of evidence, any horse at any horse show, horse exhibition, or horse sale or auction which is sore or which the Secretary has probable cause to believe is sore. The Secretary may require the temporary marking of any horse during the period of its detention for the purpose of identifying the horse as detained. A horse which is detained subject to this paragraph shall not be moved by any person from the place it is so detained except as authorized by the Secretary or until the expiration of the detention period applicable to the horse.
(2) Any equipment, device, paraphernalia, or substance which was used in violation of any provision of this chapter or any regulation issued under this chapter or which contributed to the soring of any horse at or prior to any horse show, horse exhibition, or horse sale or auction, shall be liable to be proceeded against, by process of libel for the seizure and condemnation of such equipment, device, paraphernalia, or substance, in any United States district court within the jurisdiction of which such equipment, device, paraphernalia, or substance is found. Such proceedings shall conform as nearly as possible to proceedings in rem in admiralty.
AMENDMENTS 1976—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 94–360 substituted provisions increasing the maximum amount of fine that can be imposed and the maximum length of imprisonment that can be ordered for knowingly performing enumerated activities prohibited under this chapter, for provisions authorizing a maximum civil penalty of $1,000 for each unintentional violation of this chapter, requiring notice to an alleged violator prior to assessment of any penalty and authorizing the institution of civil actions by the Attorney General to enforce such penalties. Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 94–360 substituted provisions relating to imposition of civil penalties up to $2,000, criteria for imposition of particular amounts, and procedures for review and enforcement of civil penalties, for provisions authorizing fines up to $2,000 and/or imprisonment up to six months for intentional violations of provisions of this chapter or any regulation issued thereunder. Subsecs. (c) to (e). Pub. L. 94–360 added subsecs. (c) to (e).
15 U.S.C. § 1825 (2018)