FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                          AG
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 6,1997                          (202) 616-2777
                                               TDD (202) 514-1888
 JUSTICE DEPARTMENT SEEKS 4.9 PERCENT INCREASE IN FY 1998 BUDGET
  TO CONTINUE THE FIGHT AGAINST YOUTH VIOLENCE, ILLICIT DRUGS,
               TERRORISM, AND ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION
                                
            AG Reno:  "We Must Build on our Results"


     WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Department of Justice today
announced that it is seeking a 4.9 percent boost over its 1997
budget to enhance its fight against youth violence, illicit
drugs, terrorism, and illegal immigration.  The Department is
requesting a total of $19.3 billion in Fiscal Year 1998.

     Since President Clinton took office, the Justice
Department's total budget has increased more than 69 percent--the
most of any cabinet agency. 

     "During the first term, we helped cut the rate of youth
arrests for violent crime.  Overall cocaine use has fallen and we
are working hard to turn youth attitudes on drug use around.  We
worked last year to pass new comprehensive anti-terrorism
legislation, and we deported more criminal aliens than ever
before," said Attorney General Janet Reno.  "Our 1998 budget
request will enable us to build on our results and continue our
battles against youth violence, illicit drugs, terrorism and
illegal immigration."

     Highlights of the requested resources would help pay for: 

     -    a $233 million increase to crack down on gangs and
          youth violence through enhanced state and local
          assistance, anti-truancy and crime intervention
          programs, more prosecutors and other initiatives; 

     -    17,000 more police officers on the streets for a
          total of about 80,000 funded since the 1994 Crime
          Act was passed;

     -    a 4.2 percent increase in funding to fight drugs-
          -including an 8.8 percent boost for the Drug
          Enforcement Administration and 168 more DEA
          agents, 56 new FBI agents, and 37 more Assis-tant
          U.S. Attorneys to pursue and prosecute drug
          traffickers;

     -    A total of $389 million to fund counterterrorism
          programs; 

     -    A 13 percent increase in the INS budget, to a
          record $3.6 billion, to support stepped-up Federal
          law enforcement activities along the Southwest
          border, increased removals of criminal aliens and
          enhanced enforcement against employers who hire
          illegal aliens.

COMBATTING YOUTH VIOLENCE & VIOLENT CRIME

     "By funding anti-youth violence initiatives, we can keep
young people from taking a wrong turn early in life," said Reno. 
"We must also fulfill the President's pledge to pay for 100,000
community police officers, hire more prosecutors, and build more
prison cells."

     Highlights for these areas include funding for:

-    Targeting Youth Violence:

     -    $50 million to establish Violent Youth Court
          programs, which will provide funding for
          specialized, court-based activities focusing on
          how to more effectively address violent youth
          offenders as they move through the justice system;

     -    $100 million for the Prosecutorial Initiatives
          Targeting Gang Crime and Violent Juveniles Program
          to fund at least 1,000 new initiatives like hiring
          new gang prosecutors to target gangs, gang
          violence, and other juvenile crime;

     -    $75 million to establish Anti-truancy, School
          Violence and Crime Intervention programs to keep
          young people out of trouble and to get them back
          on the right track after they have broken the law;
          and, 

     -    $8 million for funds to public and private non-profit
          organizations to provide residential services for at-
          risk or delinquent youth.

-    Putting More Cops on the Beat: A total of $1.4 billion for
     the Community Oriented Policing Program (COPS) to hire
     approximately 17,000 more police officers, bringing the
     total number of cops funded to about 80,000 of the 100,000
     promised in the 1994 Crime Act.  Another $45 million will be
     used to fund law enforcement scholarships and police
     recruitment grants. 

-    Combatting Violence Against Women:  More than $52 million in
     program enhancements for Office of Justice Programs (OJP) to
     combat violence against women, bringing State and local
     assistance under the 1994 Violence Against Women Act to $249
     million.  A total of $652.5 million has been made available
     since the inception of this program in 1996.

-    Improving Identification of Suspects and Sexual Offenders: 
     $37 million in additional OJP funding to enhance suspect and
     criminal identification technology, including $25 million
     for the National Sexual Offender Registry and $12 million
     for DNA Identification Grants. 

-    Keeping Criminals Off the Streets: 

     -    Correctional Grants:  $38 million in increases to OJP
          for the Correctional Grants Program, bringing total
          unearmarked funding to $525.5 million for state and
          local governments to build nearly 9,000 beds.  The
          Administration will be proposing that correctional
          grants may be used to cover the cost of offender
          controlled substance testing and intervention programs;

     -    State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP): A
          total of $500 million to SCAAP, including $150 million
          in OJP's Correctional Grants Program and $350 million
          available for the separate SCAAP Program.  This funding
          will help defray the costs incurred by state and local
          governments for housing criminal aliens;

     -    Building More Prison Cells: The request includes more
          than $124.1 million to accommodate our ever-growing
          inmate population, including construction of federal
          facilities for more than 1,216 new prison beds and
          activation of 1,152 beds; and,

     -    Cooperative Agreement Program (CAP): $22.5 million for
          the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) to replace about 700
          detention beds (whose contracts expire by 1998), and to
          purchase additional beds to support the projected
          growth in the Federal detention population nationwide. 
          This brings CAP's total funding to $35 million.

-    Restoring Needed Infrastructure:  $162 million in FBI, USMS,
     USA, DEA and INS infrastructure improvements for compatible
     radio communications, security improvements, facility
     renovation, field support to complement the growth in
     enforcement agents, and information resource management.

     Federal, State and local law enforcement efforts have helped
lead to a three percent decrease in the juvenile violent crime
arrest rate in 1995 and a drop in violent crime for each of the
past four years.

                CURBING DRUG TRAFFICKING AND ABUSE

     "With added funding, we can continue our alliance with state
and local law enforcement to curb the deadly spread of drugs,"
said DEA Administrator Thomas Constantine.

     Highlights include:

-    Adding 168 New DEA Agents: $29.7 million and 96 DEA agents
     to identify, investigate and prosecute major Mexican drug
     trafficking organizations operating along the Southwest
     border; $11 million and 60 DEA agents to fund a
     comprehensive approach for attacking methamphetamine abuse;
     and $5 million and 12 agents to continue implementing DEA's
     five-year strategy that targets heroin trafficking within
     the United States.

-    Hiring 76 New FBI Agents:  $19.3 million and 76 agents for
     the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to expand the
     Department's Southwest Border (SWB) Strategy; investigate
     public corruption along the SWB; enhance the SWB Special
     Operations Division; and assist the DEA's Country Attache
     office in Mexico.

-    Hiring 37 New Assistant U.S. Attorneys to Fight Drug
     Trafficking: $5.2 million and 37 attorneys to help reduce
     the availability of illegal drugs by investigating
     international and multi-jurisdictional drug trafficking
     organizations; honoring the commitment made to other nations
     to combat the international drug trade; and coordinating
     attacks against international drug organizations such as the
     Cali cartel. 

-    Expanding Drug Courts:  $45 million in additional OJP
     funding for a total of $75 million in the Drug Courts
     Program to assist State and local governments in developing
     specialized drug courts for non-violent offenders to break
     the cycle of drug abuse and crime.

-    Funding Additional Treatment and Drug Testing Programs: $33
     million in added OJP funding for a total of $63 million for
     the Residential Substance Abuse Treatment of State Prisoners
     Program; a total of $35 million under the Edward Byrne
     Memorial Grant program for state and local drug testing and
     evaluation programs; $7 million to expand Operation Drug
     Test, a federal drug testing program begun in 1997 as a 25-
     district pilot program; and $4.4 million to create the
     Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring System (ADAM), which expands
     the Drug Use Forecasting System (DUF).

     Over the past year, the Justice Department has significantly
disrupted the flow of cocaine trafficking along the Southwest
border by shutting down major Cali Cartel and Mexican drug
trafficking organizations; identifying and destroying four major
clandestine laboratory sites in Colombia; and successfully
prosecuting Mexican drug king pin Juan Garcia Abrego.  It has
also worked to help cut overall cocaine abuse by 30 percent.

FIGHTING TERRORISM & INTERNATIONAL CRIME

     "We must keep ahead of today's terrorists who seek to
threaten American citizens at home and abroad," said FBI Director
Louis Freeh.  "These funds will help us do the job."

     Highlights include:

-    Continuing the Attorney General's Counterterrorism Fund: 
     $29.5 million for a fund, established in response to the
     Oklahoma City bombing, to reimburse Justice agencies for the
     costs incurred in preventing and prosecuting domestic or
     international terrorism, and to finance reward payments.  

-    Providing State and Local Assistance: $17 million to
     continue three OJP counterterrorism programs established in
     1997 to train law enforcement officers and prosecutors to
     deal with domestic terrorism, and to develop technologies
     for state and local law enforcement to combat terrorism.

-    Enhancing International Technology and Legal Coordination: 
     $3.1 million in enhancements to enable the Criminal Division
     to increase its counter-terrorism initiatives at home and
     abroad.  This funding will allow the Department to hire
     staff as the United States assumes the Presidency of the
     G7/P8 in 1997, to eliminate procedural impediments in
     international computer crime investigations, to implement 12
     new extradition and mutual legal assistance treaties, and to
     increase Justice's legal presence overseas.

-    Adding More Resources to Prosecute Terrorists:  $3.1 million
     more for U.S. Attorneys to appoint district coordinators to
     assess domestic terrorism in their districts and be able to
     prosecute cases involving terrorist attacks.  

-    Opening New Offices: $14.3 million to hire 23 FBI agents to
     open eight new Legal Attache Offices and enhance eight
     existing offices in foreign countries.

     Over the past year the Justice Department successfully
prosecuted Rahmzi Ahmed Yousef and others for conspiring to plan
48 hours of terrorism in the sky; obtained a life sentence
against Omar Mohammed Rezaq, a Palestinian who hijacked a Cairo-
bound Egypt air flight 11 years ago; and proposed a comprehensive
package of anti-terrorism measures to upgrade our ability to
address terrorism.

PROTECTING OUR BORDERS

     "The Department's request of $3.6 billion for the
Immigration and Naturalization Service, a 13 percent increase
over FY 97, will enable INS to continue to strengthen border
control, increase removals of deportable aliens, and improve INS
data systems and record keeping," said INS Commissioner Doris
Meissner.

     Highlights include funding for:

-    Hiring More Border Patrol Agents & Inspectors: 

     -    $62 million to hire 500 additional Border Patrol Agents
          for the Southwest border, bringing the Border Patrol's
          agent force to more than 7,000; and,

     -    $19.4 million for 277 additional immigration inspectors
          and 12 immigration assistants for our nation's airports
          and seaports. 

-    Adding More Resources to Detain and Deport:  

     -    $48.3 million and 181 positions to expand INS detention
          capacity by activating bedspace at the Buffalo Service
          Processing Center and Krome (FL) lockdown facility. 
          These resources also will provide additional contract
          bedspace, including facilities in the San Diego area,
          and juvenile bedspace;

     -    $12.1 million and 42 positions for INS to locate and
          remove deportable aliens who have completed the appeals
          process and who have been issued final orders of
          deportation; and,

     -    $30.1 million and 156 positions to enhance INS'
          identification and removal of criminal aliens through
          expansion of the Local Jails Initiative and
          improvements to criminal alien records information in
          the National Criminal Information Center (NCIC).

-    Improving Technology:  $46.5 million for INS to improve its
     data records infrastructure and the Central Index System
     (CIS) as well as upgrade the naturalization fingerprint
     process, customer telephone inquiry systems, and INS' CLAIMS
     Naturalization Case Processing Support System.

-    Cracking Down on Illegal Labor:  $21 million and 156
     positions for INS' Interior Enforcement initiative, which
     will enhance Worksite Enforcement in states with high
     illegal immigrant populations and illegal labor activities,
     and will fund the INS' Verification Information System (VIS)
     to assist employers in quickly verifying the employment
     eligibility of a non-citizen.

-    Continuing to Develop Advanced Identification Systems: 
     $16.2 million for INS to continue developing biometric
     identification systems (IDENT) and case tracking systems
     (ENFORCE).  These resources will complete the deployment of
     IDENT along the Southwest border.

-    Enhancing Interagency Technology Initiatives:  $11.5 million
     for joint INS-U.S. Customs Service technology initiatives at
     land border ports of entry, such as the installation of
     license plate reader devices.

     Over the past year, INS removed a record 68,000 criminal and
other deport-able aliens; increased the number of Border Patrol
Agents "on the line" by nearly 1,000; and continued its efforts
to reform the U.S. asylum system, which has increased
productivity and reduced the number of new cases filed.

OTHER JUSTICE DEPARTMENT INITIATIVES

-    Reducing FOIA Backlogs: $41.2 million to allow the
     Department to fully implement the Electronic Freedom of
     Information Amendments (E-FOIA) of 1996 to continue reducing
     FOIA backlogs and to meet in a timely way the additional
     category of FOIA requests by individuals engaged in
     disseminating information who can demonstrate ■urgency to
     inform the public concerning actual or alleged Federal
     government activity.■

-    Providing More Support for Litigating Divisions: $18.1
     million in additional resources for litigating divisions to
     address national initiatives such as prosecuting organized
     tax protestor groups, prosecuting intentional pollution by
     vessels of our inland waterways and coastal waters,
     coordinating Federal efforts to enforce statutes and
     international treaties covering the use of CFCs, and
     prosecuting police brutality and hate crimes.  Also included
     are added resources to defend claims based on the Financial
     Institution Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act, improve
     efforts to enforce the American Disabilities Act, and
     increase criminal antitrust enforcement activities, as well
     as review complex proposed mergers.

-    Fighting Organized Crime:  $8.8 million in additional
     resources to fight organized crime, including $5 million to
     hire 28 FBI agents to enhance the FBI's investigation of the
     La Cosa Nostra (LCN) organized criminal enterprise.  The FBI
     has developed a five-year strategy (Operation Heaven's Gate)
     aimed at reducing the LCN's influence in designated labor
     unions and related industries.  Also included is an increase
     of $3.8 million in prosecution resources for U.S. Attorneys
     offices to handle an expected increase in the number of
     organized crime cases generated by the FBI.

-    Adding Resources for Prosecutions in our Nation's Capitol: 
     $16.6 million to provide additional support staff on the
     D.C. Superior Court side of the U.S. Attorneys Office in the
     Washington, D.C.  Additional attorney resources are also
     sought to enable the U.S. Attorneys Office to implement a
     community prosecution initiative, to address the rising
     problem of domestic violence and to staff a "Cold Case
     Squad" to pursue unsolved murder cases.   

-    Funding the National Advocacy Center:  $8.3 million to
     provide operating resources for the new National Advocacy
     Center (NAC) in Columbia, South Carolina, which will be
     jointly operated by the U.S. Attorneys and the National
     District Attorneys Association.

-    Continuing the Crime Victims Fund:  In 1998, including
     receipts from two recent cases involving Archer Daniels
     Midland and Haarman & Reimer Corp. (a subsidiary of
     Germany's Bayer), $286.6 million will be available for crime
     victim compensation and assistance programs.

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