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SIOUX FALLS, SD – Attorney General Jeff Sessions and U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Ron Parsons announced that the Department of Justice is taking a dramatic step to increase resources to combat violent crime, enforce our immigration laws, and help roll back the devastating opioid crisis. The official announcement was made on June 4, 2018, the 500th day of the Trump Administration.
In the largest increase in decades, the Department of Justice is allocating 311 new Assistant United States Attorneys to assist in priority areas. Those allocations are as follows: 190 violent crime prosecutors, 86 civil enforcement prosecutors, and 35 additional immigration prosecutors. Many of the civil enforcement AUSA’s will support the newly created Prescription Interdiction & Litigation Task Force which targets the opioid crisis at every level of the distribution system.
“Under President Trump's strong leadership, the Department of Justice is going on offense against violent crime, illegal immigration, and the opioid crisis—and today we are sending in reinforcements,” said Attorney General Jeff Sessions. “We have a saying in my office that a new federal prosecutor is 'the coin of the realm.' When we can eliminate wasteful spending, one of my first questions to my staff is if we can deploy more prosecutors to where they are needed. I have personally worked to re-purpose existing funds to support this critical mission, and as a former federal prosecutor myself, my expectations could not be higher. These exceptional and talented prosecutors are key leaders in our crime fighting partnership. This addition of new Assistant U.S. Attorney positions represents the largest increase in decades.”
In the District of South Dakota, one of these additional AUSAs will focus on violent crime and one on civil enforcement of laws regulating the use and distribution of prescription opioids. In addition to these newly created positions, the District of South Dakota has already added two AUSAs to its Pierre office this year who will focus on prosecuting crimes committed in Indian Country, and is in the process of hiring an AUSA for its Rapid City office to prosecute drug crime.
“We are grateful to the Administration for this demonstrated commitment to reducing violence, drug trafficking, and overdose deaths,” said U.S. Attorney Parsons. “Under the leadership of Attorney General Sessions, we are working as hard as we can every day to help make every community in South Dakota a safer place to live.”