JUSTICE DEPARTMENT EMPLOYEES IN CONNECTICUT RECOGNIZED AT ATTORNEY GENERAL AWARDS CEREMONY
WASHINGTON – Four members of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Connecticut and five special agents from the New Haven Division of the FBI were recognized today by Attorney General Eric Holder at the 60th Annual Attorney General’s Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C. Held at DAR Constitution Hall, this annual ceremony recognizes both department employees and others for their outstanding dedication to carrying out the Department of Justice’s missions. A total of 282 Justice Department employees and 57 other individuals from outside of the department were honored today for their distinguished public service.
“This year’s award recipients have made significant contributions across, and far beyond, the Department of Justice and helped to protect the rights, safety and best interests of the citizens we are privileged to serve,” Attorney General Holder said. “I am grateful for the dedication and passion that these extraordinary public servants bring to their work, and I am honored to count them as colleagues.”
“It is gratifying that these dedicated public servants from the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI in New Haven have been recognized with these awards,” U.S. Attorney David Fein said. “It is a tribute to their great work and the work being done by their Department of Justice colleagues in Connecticut, who are engaged in important investigations of not only local significance, but also of national and international importance. I am honored to work alongside them.”
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Edward Chang and David C. Nelson, and FBI Special Agents Jane M. Domboski, Kenneth W. Keller, Thomas S. Lawler, Briana L. Neumiller and Stephen L. Ney received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award for their outstanding contribution as part of a team that successfully investigated and dismantled the Coreflood Botnet, also known as Operation Adeona. The Coreflood Botnet was a collection of approximately 2.3 million compromised computers illegally controlled by subjects in Russia, which were then used to steal personal information and commit financial fraud on a massive scale. Operation Adeona was the first proactive seizure of a botnet by law enforcement authorities in the United States, utilizing an innovative legal framework and sophisticated technical means to cause the subjects to release control of the compromised computers.
“The FBI’s strength is in the caliber and commitment of its employees, so it is of great pride for the New Haven Division that five of its special agents are being recognized today with a Distinguished Service Award from the Attorney General,” said Kimberly K. Mertz, Special Agent in Charge of the New Haven Division of the FBI. “Simply put, the Coreflood botnet investigation was a sophisticated, proactive investigation that prevented countless criminal and fraudulent acts from affecting hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide. Its success, however, was rooted in the dedication and ingenuity shown by these extremely talented agents.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney John H. Durham and Information Technology Specialist Jane K. Royce received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award for their roles in two sensitive investigations ordered by two different Attorneys General. In January 2007, Attorney General Michael Mukasey asked Assistant U.S. Attorney Durham to lead a team that would investigate the destruction of interrogation videotapes by the CIA. Assistant U.S. Attorney Durham assembled the team and began the investigation. Then, in August 2009, Attorney General Holder expanded Assistant U.S. Attorney Durham’s mandate to include a preliminary review of the treatment of detainees held at overseas locations. This second request resulted in the review of 101 detainee matters that led to two full criminal investigations. In order to conduct the investigations, the team had to review significant amounts of information, much of which was classified, and conduct many interviews in the United States and at overseas locations.
Former District of Connecticut Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward T. “Teddy” Kang, who is now a Trial Attorney with the Department of Justice, Criminal Division, Fraud Section, also received a Distinguished Service Award for his participation in these investigations.
The United States Attorney’s Office is charged with enforcing federal criminal laws in Connecticut, and with representing the federal government in civil litigation in the District. The District is composed of more than 60 Assistant United States Attorneys and approximately 55 staff members at offices in New Haven, Hartford and Bridgeport.
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