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Historical Overview

The first United States Attorney's Office in Miami opened in 1929 and was located at 100 N.E. 1st Avenue. In 1932, the Office moved into the U.S. Courthouse, 300 N.E. 1st Avenue, where one federal judge, the Honorable John W. Holland (former United States Attorney), presided. The Office remained very small until after World War II. In 1952, there were two part-time Assistant U.S. Attorneys (AUSAs) and three support staff. Since 1993, the primary office for the Southern District has been located at 99 N.E. 4th Street in Miami. The United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida has three other staffed offices: Fort Lauderdale, which opened in 1975; West Palm Beach, which opened in 1978; and Ft. Pierce, which opened in 1990. The United States Attorney’s Office also has a presence in Key West, where numerous cases are tried.

Over the years, the Southern District of Florida has experienced a high rate of growth in AUSA personnel: from 9 AUSAs in 1965 to approximately 223 AUSAs and 41 Special Assistant U.S. Attorneys. There are 25 U.S. District Court Judges (one judge recently retired) and 17 U.S. Magistrate Judges who preside over federal matters in the Southern District.

The State of Florida is divided into three federal judicial districts: Southern, Middle, and Northern. The Southern District of Florida comprises 15,197 square miles and extends along more than 300 miles of coastline from Key West in the South to Vero Beach in the North. The Southern District of Florida has more than 7 million residents and covers nine counties: Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, Indian River, Okeechobee, and Highlands. The SDFL is racially, ethnically, and culturally diverse with ties to Latin America, the Bahamas, and other Caribbean nations.

The Southern District is home to federal enclaves, including but not limited to, the Homestead Air Reserve Base, several U.S. Coast Guard bases, a NOAA command center, the Miccosukee and Seminole Indian Reservations, and the U.S. Southern Command, Department of Defense.  

In addition to approximately 25 federal law enforcement agencies, there are approximately 98 state and local police agencies that have a presence within the Southern District of Florida.

Updated November 10, 2023