Supervisory Trial Attorney (Deputy Chief, Special Operations Unit)

Office of Enforcement Operations
Washington, DC 20004
United States
About the Office: 

The Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice is seeking a Department of Justice attorney for a management position in the Special Operations Unit (SOU) within the Office of Enforcement Operations. The position is based in Washington, D.C.

The SOU handles criminal matters requiring Department of Justice headquarters’ consultation or approval mandated by applicable law or Departmental policy, including oversight of the Federal Witness Security Program. Additionally, the SOU reviews, evaluates, and recommends for approval requests to use federal prisoners or BOP employees proactively in covert investigations; approves requests to use covert investigative techniques to target federal prisoners or BOP employees; authorizes covert consensual recordings in sensitive circumstances; reviews all requests to implement Special Administrative Measures upon high-risk federal inmates in terrorism or national security cases, as well as cases involving extremely violent offenders; and reviews and evaluates all requests for S visa and Lawful Permanent Resident consideration to be submitted to the Department of Homeland Security. The SOU also provides legal and operational advice to U.S. Attorneys Offices around the country on substantive areas of the law assigned to it.

Job Description: 

The Deputy Chief is responsible for assisting the Unit Chief in overseeing all issues and programs of the SOU.  The incumbent will assist the Unit Chief in managing and supervising the attorneys and non-attorney staff within the Unit, including reviewing work product and evaluating performance, as well as exercising decision-making authority in certain circumstances.

In addition to management duties, the Deputy Chief will be responsible for completing assignments in all of the Unit’s substantive areas of expertise and responsibility, and may advise Division and Department decision-makers and others on legal and policy issues relating to sophisticated covert investigative techniques and sensitive operational matters.    

The position requires outstanding interpersonal, writing, and legal research skills, as the incumbent will be required to supervise a diverse group of employees as well as to coordinate with many SOU partners, both within and outside of the Department, including interacting with supervisory Assistant U.S. Attorneys, supervisory federal law enforcement agents, representatives of the United States Marshals Service, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and other Executive Branch officials. 

The Deputy Chief also will act as Attorney Advisor to the Deputy Director of the Federal Witness Security Program who sits dual-hatted as the SOU Unit Chief.  The incumbent will be responsible for representing the Unit with various agency partners and is required to be familiar with the Departmental policies and legal requirements as they relate to the subject matters within SOU’s areas of substantive responsibility.  The incumbent must be able to effectively represent the Section, the Division, and the Department in written communications and as a spokesperson.

Other necessary skills include attention to detail and the ability to effectively handle time-sensitive projects. 

Current salary and years of experience determine the appropriate salary level. The possible range for a GS-15 position is $137,849 to $166,500. (See OPM’s Web page at
Some travel will be required.
Application Process: 

The Application Package must be received by 11:59PM, Eastern Time, on the closing date of this announcement.

Please submit your application through USAJOBS. The list of required documents can be found in the USAJobs announcement.

1. If you do not already have an account, please create a USAjobs account before applying. You will be able to upload your resume and supporting documents and complete your profile prior to applying.

2. Once you have an account, apply to the USAjobs

Application Deadline: 
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Relocation Expenses: 
Reloaction expenses are not authorized.
Number of Positions: 
Updated April 23, 2019

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Department Policies

Equal Employment Opportunity:  The U.S. Department of Justice is an Equal Opportunity/Reasonable Accommodation Employer.  Except where otherwise provided by law, there will be no discrimination because of color, race, religion, national origin, political affiliation, marital status, disability (physical or mental), age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, protected genetic information, pregnancy, status as a parent, or any other nonmerit-based factor.  The Department of Justice welcomes and encourages applications from persons with physical and mental disabilities. The Department is firmly committed to satisfying its affirmative obligations under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, to ensure that persons with disabilities have every opportunity to be hired and advanced on the basis of merit within the Department of Justice. For more information, please review our full EEO Statement.

Reasonable Accommodations:  This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the agency.  Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Outreach and Recruitment for Qualified Applicants with Disabilities:  The Department encourages qualified applicants with disabilities, including individuals with targeted/severe disabilities to apply in response to posted vacancy announcements.  Qualified applicants with targeted/severe disabilities may be eligible for direct hire, non-competitive appointment under Schedule A (5 C.F.R. § 213.3102(u)) hiring authority.  Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to contact one of the Department’s Disability Points of Contact (DPOC) to express an interest in being considered for a position. See list of DPOCs.   

Suitability and Citizenship:  It is the policy of the Department to achieve a drug-free workplace and persons selected for employment will be required to pass a drug test which screens for illegal drug use prior to final appointment.  Employment is also contingent upon the completion and satisfactory adjudication of a background investigation. Congress generally prohibits agencies from employing non-citizens within the United States, except for a few narrow exceptions as set forth in the annual Appropriations Act (see, Pursuant to DOJ component policies, only U.S. citizens are eligible for employment with the Executive Office for Immigration Review, U.S. Trustee’s Offices, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Unless otherwise indicated in a particular job advertisement, qualifying non-U.S. citizens meeting immigration and appropriations law criteria may apply for employment with other DOJ organizations. However, please be advised that the appointment of non-U.S. citizens is extremely rare; such appointments would be possible only if necessary to accomplish the Department's mission and would be subject to strict security requirements. Applicants who hold dual citizenship in the U.S. and another country will be considered on a case-by-case basis. All DOJ employees are subject to a residency requirement. Candidates must have lived in the United States for at least three of the past five years. The three-year period is cumulative, not necessarily consecutive. Federal or military employees, or dependents of federal or military employees serving overseas, are excepted from this requirement. This is a Department security requirement which is waived only for extreme circumstances and handled on a case-by-case basis.

Veterans:  There is no formal rating system for applying veterans' preference to attorney appointments in the excepted service; however, the Department of Justice considers veterans' preference eligibility as a positive factor in attorney hiring. Applicants eligible for veterans' preference must include that information in their cover letter or resume and attach supporting documentation (e.g., the DD 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty and other supporting documentation) to their submissions. Although the "point" system is not used, per se, applicants eligible to claim 10-point preference must submit Standard Form (SF) 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference, and submit the supporting documentation required for the specific type of preference claimed (visit the OPM website, for a copy of SF 15, which lists the types of 10-point preferences and the required supporting document(s). Applicants should note that SF 15 requires supporting documentation associated with service- connected disabilities or receipt of nonservice-connected disability pensions to be dated 1991 or later except in the case of service members submitting official statements or retirement orders from a branch of the Armed Forces showing that his  or her retirement was due to a permanent service-connected disability or that he/she was transferred to the permanent disability retired list (the statement or retirement orders must indicate that the disability is 10% or more).


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This and other vacancy announcements can be found under Attorney Vacancies and Volunteer Legal Internships. The Department of Justice cannot control further dissemination and/or posting of information contained in this vacancy announcement. Such posting and/or dissemination is not an endorsement by the Department of the organization or group disseminating and/or posting the information.