Attorney General Eric Holder Recognizes Michigan Prosecutors
J. Michael Buckley and Roy Kranz, Assistant United States Attorneys for the Eastern District of Michigan, were two of 243 members of the U.S. Department of Justice recognized by Attorney General Eric Holder and Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys (EOUSA) Director Monty Wilkinson at the 30th annual Director’s Awards Ceremony today in Washington D.C.
U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade joined Holder at the ceremony to recognize employees of the Eastern District of Michigan, one of 44 districts represented at the Great Hall in the Robert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building.
In his prepared remarks, Attorney General Holder told the awardees, “Locally, nationally, and internationally, you represent the very best that this Department has to offer. Your work embodies our ongoing commitment – not merely to win cases, but to do justice; to protect our fellow citizens from crime, violence, and terrorism; to empower the most vulnerable among us; and to uphold the rule of law.”
EOUSA Director Monty Wilkinson echoed those sentiments, saying to the recipients, “You have persevered, and remained focused and motivated – achieving remarkable results in work that makes a difference in the lives of citizens across our great country. The vast scope of your collective accomplishments is nothing short of exceptional.”
J. Michael Buckley was recognized for his outstanding investigation and prosecution of a sophisticated conspiracy to defraud the cash-strapped and financially vulnerable Detroit Public Schools System out of more than $3 million. Eight individuals were convicted in the fraud and kickback scheme which centered around a sham health and wellness program for school employees. Sherry Washington, a prominent local art dealer who was the driving force behind the scheme, was convicted after a jury trial and sentenced to seven years in prison, one of the longest prison sentences in the Eastern District of Michigan for a non-public official in a federal corruption case. Washington’s conviction and sentence were affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in a published opinion that established new precedent favorable to enforcing corruption cases.
Roy R. Kranz was recognized for his prosecution of violent crime in Indian Country. For the past five years, Kranz has handled almost all of the Indian Country cases in the Eastern District of Michigan. During that period, he has dramatically increased the number of prosecutions in this district. He has developed innovative methods for using the grand jury process and monitoring jailhouse calls to develop evidence, securing convictions in cases that would otherwise have been declined for insufficient evidence. Kranz also has provided training to Indian Country law enforcement officers, and meets regularly with leaders of the Saginaw Chippewa Tribe to determine how best to serve the tribe.
“We are very proud of the outstanding service performed by AUSAs Buckley and Kranz on behalf of the people of the Eastern District of Michigan,” McQuade said. “Both are skilled trial attorneys who dedicate extra hours of time to finding innovative ways to protect victims of crime through prosecution. They work nights, weekends and holidays with no overtime pay because they care deeply about delivering justice to the people they serve.”
EOUSA provides oversight, general executive assistance, and direction to the 94 United States Attorneys’ offices around the country. For more information on EOUSA and its mission, visit http://www.justice.gov/usao.