7 U.S. Code §7420. Investigations and power to subpoena

Section Text

(a) Investigations

The Secretary may make such investigations as the Secretary considers necessary—

(1) for the effective administration of this subchapter; or

(2) to determine whether any person subject to this subchapter has engaged, or is about to engage, in any action that constitutes or will constitute a violation of this subchapter or any order or regulation issued under this subchapter.

(b) Subpoenas, oaths, and affirmations

For the purpose of any investigation under subsection (a), the Secretary may administer oaths and affirmations, subpoena witnesses, compel the attendance of witnesses, take evidence, and require the production of any records or documents that are relevant to the inquiry. The attendance of witnesses and the production of records or documents may be required from any place in the United States.

(c) Aid of courts

In the case of contumacy by, or refusal to obey a subpoena issued to, any person, the Secretary may invoke the aid of any court of the United States within the jurisdiction of which the investigation or proceeding is carried on, or where the person resides or carries on business, in order to require the attendance and testimony of the person or the production of records or documents. The court may issue an order requiring the person to appear before the Secretary to produce records or documents or to give testimony regarding the matter under investigation.

(d) Contempt

Any failure to obey the order of the court may be punished by the court as a contempt of the court.

(e) Process

Process in any case under this section may be served in the judicial district in which the person resides or carries on business or wherever the person may be found.


7 U.S.C. § 7420 (2018)