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Federal Justice Statistics, 2015-2016

This report describes persons processed by the federal criminal justice system. Data are from the Federal Justice Statistics Program (FJSP). The FJSP collects, standardizes, and reports on administrative data received from six federal justice agencies: the U.S. Marshals Service, Drug Enforcement Administration, Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys, Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, U.S. Sentencing Commission, and Federal Bureau of Prisons.

From fiscal year (FY) 2015 to FY 2016, federal arrests decreased by 1%, from 153,478 arrests to 151,460. The number of defendants sentenced to federal prison decreased by 3%, from 56,018 in FY 2015 to 54,274 in FY 2016. Of the nearly 380,000 persons under federal correctional control on September 30, 2016 (fiscal year-end), 59% were in secure confinement and 41% were under community supervision. This represents a decrease from fiscal year-end 2015, when 392,212 persons were under federal correctional control (60% in secure confinement and 40% on supervision in the community).


A total of 151,460 arrests were made by federal law enforcement agencies in fiscal year (FY) 2016.

More than half (58%) of all federal arrests in FY 2016 took place in the five federal judicial districts along the U.S.-Mexico border, up from 45% in FY 2006.

In FY 2016, the five federal judicial districts along the U.S.-Mexico border accounted for 52% of all suspects investigated and 41% of all offenders who were sentenced to federal prison.

Forty-five percent of federal arrests in FY 2016 involved an immigration offense as the most serious arrest offense.

In FY 2016, 41% of defendants charged in all U.S. district courts were not U.S. citizens: 30% were Mexican citizens, 5% were from Central America, and 6% were citizens of other foreign nations.

In FY 2016, 59% of defendants charged in U.S. district courts were U.S. citizens, 5% were legal aliens, and 36% were illegal aliens.

From FY 2006 to FY 2016, Drug Enforcement Administration arrests for heroin or other opioids increased 154%.


Bureau of Justice Statistics
Federal Justice Statistics, 2015-2016

Check out previous Environmental Scans

The National Institute of Corrections publishes this compilation of resources each year as an overview of what research indicates to be the trends in the corrections industry each year.
Accession Number: (2018) 033176, (2019) 033431, (2020) 033563, (2021) 033670, (2022) 033086, (2023) 033087