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Criminal Jury Instructions

Criminal Jury Instructions Home

8.7-2  Computer Crime for Terrorist Purposes -- § 53a-301

Revised to December 1, 2007

The defendant is charged [in count __] with computer crime in furtherance of terrorist purposes.  The statute defining this offense reads in pertinent part as follows: 

a person is guilty of computer crime in furtherance of terrorist purposes when such person, with intent to intimidate or coerce the civilian population or a unit of government, commits computer crime.1

For you to find the defendant guilty of this charge, the state must prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

Element 1 - Committed computer crime
The first element is that the defendant committed a computer crime.

<See 9.6 Computer Crimes and 10.5 Internet Crimes for the various computer crimes.>

Element 2 - Intent
The second element is that the defendant specifically intended to intimidate or coerce the civil population or a unit of government.  "Intimidate” has its ordinary meaning.  "Coerce" means to compel or induce another to do something, or not to do something, by instilling fear in that person.  "Civilian population" has its ordinary meaning.  "Unit of government" means any unit of any branch, subdivision or agency of the state, or any locality within it.  <Insert specific allegations.

Conclusion

In summary, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that 1) the defendant committed a computer crime, and 2) (he/she) did so with the intent to intimidate or coerce the civil population or a unit of government.

If you unanimously find that the state has proved beyond a reasonable doubt each of the elements of computer crime for a terrorist purpose, then you shall find the defendant guilty.  On the other hand, if you unanimously find that the state has failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt any of the elements, you shall then find the defendant not guilty.
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1 As defined in General Statutes § 53a-251, or a violation of any provision of General Statutes § 53-451.

Commentary

Sentence Enhancer
General Statutes § 53a-301 (b) provides for a mandatory minimum of five years imprisonment if the offense "is directed against any public agency, as defined in section 1-200, that is charged with the protection of public safety."  General Statutes § 1-200 (1) defines "public agency" as:

  • Any executive, administrative or legislative office of the state or any political subdivision of the state and any state or town agency, any department, institution, bureau, board, commission, authority or official of the state or of any city, town, borough, municipal corporation, school district, regional district or other district or other political subdivision of the state, including any committee of, or created by, any such office, subdivision, agency, department, institution, bureau, board, commission, authority or official, and also includes any judicial office, official, or body or committee thereof but only with respect to its or their administrative functions.

  • Any person to the extent such person is deemed to be the functional equivalent of a public agency pursuant to law.

  • Any "implementing agency," which is defined in General Statutes § 32-222 (k) as one of the following agencies designated by a municipality: (1) An economic development commission; redevelopment agency; sewer authority or sewer commission; public works commission; water authority or water commission; port authority or port commission or harbor authority or harbor commission; parking authority or parking commission; (2) a nonprofit development corporation; or (3) any other agency designated and authorized by a municipality to undertake a project and approved by the commissioner.

The jury must find this fact beyond a reasonable doubt. See Sentence Enhancers, Instruction 2.11-4.
 


 

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