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Criminal Division

National Security

The National Security Unit works closely with the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) and other law enforcement agencies to prevent, disrupt, and defeat terrorist operations before they occur, and to investigate and prosecute any planned, threatened, or executed acts of terrorism. The National Security Unit also oversees investigations and prosecutions of threats to critical infrastructure, violations of export control laws, defense contractor fraud, and large-scale immigration offenses. Additionally, the National Security Unit works with the JTTF to identify, collect, and disseminate both foreign and domestic intelligence relevant to ongoing threat assessments and threat mitigation. To that end, the National Security Unit works with the U.S. Attorney to oversee the Anti-Terrorism Advisory Council for the District of New Jersey, which is a large consortium of federal, state, county, and local law enforcement agencies and organizations with national security interests, to promote and foster intelligence sharing and response preparedness.

Economic Crimes

The Economic Crimes Unit investigates and prosecutes complex financial fraud cases, including, securities, commodities and investment fraud schemes, corporate frauds, fraud against federally insured financial institutions, and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations.  The unit’s investigations frequently involve complex schemes relating to the securities and commodities markets, including insider trading and market manipulation schemes, as well as accounting and securities fraud by public companies and fraud by investment advisers.  The Economic Crimes Unit works in close coordination with federal law enforcement agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation Division, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and frequently coordinates with parallel investigations being conducted by federal and state regulators, including the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.  Because many of the unit’s matters involve money laundering and criminal forfeiture, the unit works in close coordination with the Asset Recovery and Money Laundering Unit to maximize the recovery of criminal proceeds from complex frauds and to return the money to victims.

Cybercrime Prevention and Enforcement

This unit will partner with the National Security and Economic Crimes units to focus on various types of cyberattacks, including data breaches, botnets, malicious computer viruses, logic bombs, computer intrusions, and ATM hacking as well as intellectual property-related crimes, including theft of trade secrets, copyright, and trademark violations. In addition to litigating their own cases, members of this unit will provide support and expertise to federal and state partners as needed and build on existing partnerships with private industry to investigate and prosecute cybercrimes.

Government Frauds

The Government Frauds Unit replaced the Public Protection Unit, and handles all sorts of matters in which the Government is the primary intended victim.   The Government Frauds Unit pursues criminal and civil actions to punish those who engage in fraud, false statements and other misconduct against the United States; and seeks civil penalties against those who violate the nation's defense, safety, social and economic welfare laws. The Unit also pursues parallel proceedings to coordinate civil and criminal fraud investigations.

Health Care Fraud

The Health Care Fraud Unit investigates and prosecutes crimes involving fraud and abuse in the health care industry. The principal focus of the unit is prosecuting major fraud directed at federal programs, including Medicare, Medicaid, and hospitals run by the Veterans Administration. These matters include the sale of unapproved or altered drugs, illegal marketing of drugs for unapproved uses, illegal kickbacks, improper billing, and improper diversion of controlled substances. Frequently, these matters arise from qui tam complaints filed by whistle blowers and require close coordination with other components of the Department of Justice.

Organized Crime/Gangs

The Organized Crime/Gangs Unit investigates and prosecutes organized crime groups for, among other things, labor racketeering, human trafficking, homicide, illegal gambling, and loan sharking. The unit also handles investigations and prosecutions of members of traditional organized crime groups – such as the seven La Cosa Nostra organized crime families in the New York City, New Jersey, and Philadelphia areas – as well as emerging organized crime groups, such as Russian/Eastern European and Asian criminal organizations. The unit also investigates and prosecutes local and national gangs, such as the Bloods, Crips, Latin Kings, and MS-13.

Violent Crimes Enforcement

The Violent Crimes Enforcement Unit aims to address recent increases in certain types of violent crime in New Jersey, including homicide and rape, by working together with the Organized Crime/Gangs Unit to target seven strategic areas: federal interest murder/major violent crimes, gang prosecution, carjacking, gun trafficking, armed bank robberies, Hobbs Act robberies, and human trafficking.

Narcotics/Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF)

The Narcotics/OCDETF Unit investigates and prosecutes significant drug trafficking and money laundering organizations. Targets include individuals who organize, direct, finance, or are otherwise engaged in high-level illegal drug trafficking, as well as those who use otherwise legitimate businesses to facilitate the distribution of drugs and disbursal of drug proceeds. In conjunction with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Department of Homeland Security U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), FBI, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), members of the unit commonly conduct court-authorized wiretap and financial investigations. In addition, the Narcotics/OCDETF Unit works cooperatively with many state, county, and local drug enforcement agencies.

Opioid Abuse Prevention and Enforcement

Among the first stand-alone units of its kind in the country, this unit will work with the Health Care and Government Fraud Unit and the OCDETF Unit to target anyone who illegally profits from these dangerous and addictive drugs, including dealers running street-level distribution networks, doctors and pharmacists who turn a blind eye to over-prescribing and phony prescriptions, and the manufacturers and distributors who abdicate their responsibility to ensure these medications are being used lawfully.

Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering

The Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Unit provides support to the Criminal and Special Prosecutions Divisions in forfeiting assets that are the proceeds of criminal activity or were used to facilitate criminal activity. In addition, the unit prosecutes defendants for money laundering, violating currency reporting requirements, and conducting illegal money transmitting businesses. The unit is also responsible for civil asset forfeitures, in which the government utilizes civil in rem actions, rather than criminal prosecutions, to seek the forfeiture of the proceeds of criminal activity and property used to facilitate criminal activity.

Updated January 22, 2020

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