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This database of terrorism prosecutions and sentencing information was created using public records including three lists of prosecutions from the U.S. Department of Justice (from 2010, 2014, and 2015), court files available through the federal judiciary’s case management system, DOJ press releases, and inmate data from the Bureau of Prisons. For each defendant in the database, U.S. criminal code data related to charges has been categorized according to this legend.

Trevor Aaronson created the first iteration of this database as part of a project funded by the Investigative Reporting Program at the University of California, Berkeley. Mother Jones magazine published that data in 2011, along with accompanying articles, in a package that is still available online.

Beginning in 2016, Aaronson and Margot Williams collaborated to update and expand the database, with a new emphasis to include Bureau of Prisons data because so many post-9/11 terrorism defendants had been released. The cases include any prosecutions after September 11, 2001, that the U.S. government labeled as related to international terrorism. The Intercept first published this database on April 20, 2017.

This database is licensed under Creative Commons for noncommercial uses with appropriate attribution. If you publish this database, in part or whole, you must credit Trevor Aaronson and Margot Williams.


Database compiled by Trevor Aaronson and Margot Williams
Data Visualization: Moiz Syed
Developers: Akil Harris, Westley Hennigh-Palermo
Editors: Sharon Weinberger, Andrea Jones, Roger Hodge, Eseosa Olumhense
Additional Research: Alleen Brown, Malak Habbak, John Thomason
Art Direction: Philipp Hubert, Soohee Cho
Product Manager: LJ Ruell
Research Director: Lynn Dombek
Editor-in-Chief: Betsy Reed


Trial and Terror Dataset



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