United States Code

USC most recently checked for updates: Jan 30, 2023

§ 843.
Art. 43. Statute of limitations
(a)
No Limitation for Certain Offenses.—
A person charged with absence without leave or missing movement in time of war, with murder, rape or sexual assault, or rape or sexual assault of a child, maiming of a child, kidnapping of a child, or with any other offense punishable by death, may be tried and punished at any time without limitation.
(b)
Five-year Limitation for Trial by Court-martial.—
(1)
Except as otherwise provided in this section (article), a person charged with an offense is not liable to be tried by court-martial if the offense was committed more than five years before the receipt of sworn charges and specifications by an officer exercising summary court-martial jurisdiction over the command.
(2)
(A)
A person charged with having committed a child abuse offense against a child is liable to be tried by court-martial if the sworn charges and specifications are received during the life of the child or within ten years after the date on which the offense was committed, whichever provides a longer period, by an officer exercising summary court-martial jurisdiction with respect to that person.
(B)
In subparagraph (A), the term “child abuse offense” means an act that involves abuse of a person who has not attained the age of 16 years and constitutes any of the following offenses:
(i)
Any offense in violation of section 920, 920a, 920b, 920c, or 930 of this title (article 120, 120a, 120b, 120c, or 130), unless the offense is covered by subsection (a).
(ii)
Aggravated assault, assault consummated by a battery, or assault with intent to commit specified offenses in violation of section 928 of this title (article 128).
(C)
In subparagraph (A), the term “child abuse offense” includes an act that involves abuse of a person who has not attained the age of 18 years and would constitute an offense under chapter 110 or 117 of title 18 or under section 1591 of that title.
(3)
A person charged with an offense is not liable to be punished under section 815 of this title (article 15) if the offense was committed more than two years before the imposition of punishment.
(c)
Tolling for Absence Without Leave or Flight From Justice.—
Periods in which the accused is absent without authority or fleeing from justice shall be excluded in computing the period of limitation prescribed in this section (article).
(d)
Tolling for Absence From US or Military Jurisdiction.—
Periods in which the accused was absent from territory in which the United States has the authority to apprehend him, or in the custody of civil authorities, or in the hands of the enemy, shall be excluded in computing the period of limitation prescribed in this article.
(e)
Extension for Offenses in Time of War Detrimental to Prosecution of War.—
For an offense the trial of which in time of war is certified to the President by the Secretary concerned to be detrimental to the prosecution of the war or inimical to the national security, the period of limitation prescribed in this article is extended to six months after the termination of hostilities as proclaimed by the President or by a joint resolution of Congress.
(f)
Extension for Other Offenses in Time of War.—
When the United States is at war, the running of any statute of limitations applicable to any offense under this chapter—
(1)
involving fraud or attempted fraud against the United States or any agency thereof in any manner, whether by conspiracy or not;
(2)
committed in connection with the acquisition, care, handling, custody, control, or disposition of any real or personal property of the United States; or
(3)
committed in connection with the negotiation, procurement, award, performance, payment, interim financing, cancellation, or other termination or settlement, of any contract, subcontract, or purchase order which is connected with or related to the prosecution of the war, or with any disposition of termination inventory by any war contractor or Government agency;
is suspended until three years after the termination of hostilities as proclaimed by the President or by a joint resolution of Congress.
(g)
Defective or Insufficient Charges.—
(1)
If charges or specifications are dismissed as defective or insufficient for any cause and the period prescribed by the applicable statute of limitations—
(A)
has expired; or
(B)
will expire within 180 days after the date of dismissal of the charges and specifications,
trial and punishment under new charges and specifications are not barred by the statute of limitations if the conditions specified in paragraph (2) are met.
(2)
The conditions referred to in paragraph (1) are that the new charges and specifications must—
(A)
be received by an officer exercising summary court-martial jurisdiction over the command within 180 days after the dismissal of the charges or specifications; and
(B)
allege the same acts or omissions that were alleged in the dismissed charges or specifications (or allege acts or omissions that were included in the dismissed charges or specifications).
(h)
Fraudulent Enlistment or Appointment.—
A person charged with fraudulent enlistment or fraudulent appointment under section 904a(1) of this title (article 104a(1)) may be tried by court-martial if the sworn charges and specifications are received by an officer exercising summary court-martial jurisdiction with respect to that person, as follows:
(1)
In the case of an enlisted member, during the period of the enlistment or five years, whichever provides a longer period.
(2)
In the case of an officer, during the period of the appointment or five years, whichever provides a longer period.
(i)
DNA Evidence.—
If DNA testing implicates an identified person in the commission of an offense punishable by confinement for more than one year, no statute of limitations that would otherwise preclude prosecution of the offense shall preclude such prosecution until a period of time following the implication of the person by DNA testing has elapsed that is equal to the otherwise applicable limitation period.
(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 51; Pub. L. 99–661, div. A, title VIII, § 805(a), (b), Nov. 14, 1986, 100 Stat. 3908; Pub. L. 108–136, div. A, title V, § 551, Nov. 24, 2003, 117 Stat. 1481; Pub. L. 109–163, div. A, title V, §§ 552(e), 553, Jan. 6, 2006, 119 Stat. 3263, 3264; Pub. L. 109–364, div. A, title X, § 1071(a)(4), Oct. 17, 2006, 120 Stat. 2398; Pub. L. 111–383, div. A, title X, § 1075(b)(14), Jan. 7, 2011, 124 Stat. 4369; Pub. L. 112–81, div. A, title V, § 541(d)(1), Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1410; Pub. L. 112–239, div. A, title X, § 1076(f)(8), Jan. 2, 2013, 126 Stat. 1952; Pub. L. 113–66, div. A, title XVII, § 1703(a), (b), Dec. 26, 2013, 127 Stat. 958; Pub. L. 113–291, div. A, title V, § 531(d)(2)(A), Dec. 19, 2014, 128 Stat. 3364; Pub. L. 114–328, div. E, title LVII, § 5225(a)–(e), Dec. 23, 2016, 130 Stat. 2909, 2910; Pub. L. 115–91, div. A, title X, § 1081(c)(1)(E), Dec. 12, 2017, 131 Stat. 1598; Pub. L. 116–92, div. A, title V, § 533(a), Dec. 20, 2019, 133 Stat. 1361.)
cite as: 10 USC 843