The United States Attorney's Office for the Central District of California (USAO) is responsible for representing the federal government in virtually all litigation involving the United States in the Central District of California. This includes criminal prosecutions for violations of federal law, civil lawsuits by and against the government, and actions to collect judgments and restitution on behalf of victims and taxpayers.
The USAO, with an authorized strength of approximately 264 Assistant United States Attorneys, is the second largest in the country (trailing only the District of Columbia Office, which, in addition to prosecuting federal crimes, also prosecutes all crimes committed within the District of Columbia, prosecutions that in other districts would be handled by local district attorneys). The USAO is divided into four litigating divisions, Criminal, National Security, Civil, and Tax, and a non-lawyer Administrative Division. The USAO's main offices are in Los Angeles. The USAO also has branch offices in Santa Ana (Orange County) and Riverside (Riverside County), which handle federal criminal cases originating in Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino counties.
Reflecting the size and diversity of the district, the cases handled by the USAO are among the most significant in the country, arising from investigations that span the nation and often reach overseas as well.