Third, the sentencing structure contained within the OOJ chapter likewise provides clues to Congress's intent with respect to [section] 1512(c)(1).
That Congress chose to create criminal obstruction provisions in [section][section] 1512(c)(1), 1519, and 1520 as a part of Sarbanes-Oxley and then decided to place them alongside the most serious crimes within the OOJ chapter with similarly serious sentences shows that Congress was concerned with more than mere insular evidence destruction or small-scale roadblocks to garden-variety criminal investigations.
Not only do the preexisting obstruction of justice provisions shed light on congressional intent, but a comparison of the provisions added to the OOJ chapter by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act reinforces the limited applicability of [section] 1512(c)(1) to either corporate fraud cases, fraud cases generally, or cases in which a specific judicial proceeding was underway or imminent.
Section 2232 differs from [section] 1512(c)(1) and the other provisions in the OOJ chapter in both the subject matter covered and the timing of when criminal liability attaches.
Just like the pre-Sarbanes-Oxley OOJ statutes and the post-Sarbanes-Oxley OOJ provisions, [section] 2232 shines a light on the types of conduct Congress intended for [section] 1512(c)(1) to cover.
First, it appears that Congress relied on and incorporated principles of [section] 2J 1.2 in the Sarbanes-Oxley OOJ provisions.
Second, the phrase "substantial interference with the administration of justice" within [section] 2J1.2(b)(2) is defined in the application notes as including "a premature or improper termination of a felony investigation; an indictment, verdict, or any judicial determination based upon perjury, false testimony, or other false evidence; or the unnecessary expenditure of substantial governmental or court resources." (60) Thus, the application notes indicate that the OOJ guideline is to be used only when an investigation is prematurely or improperly terminated, not merely stymied.