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Press Release

U.S. Attorney Williams Announces Enforcement Priorities And SDNY Whistleblower Pilot Program

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of New York

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today SDNY’s criminal enforcement priorities for 2024.  In addition, U.S. Attorney Williams announced the creation of a Whistleblower Pilot Program designed to proactively uncover criminal conduct in the District.  A copy of the Whistleblower Pilot Program is attached to this press release and is available here on the SDNY website.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said:

“When I was sworn in as U.S. Attorney in 2021, I announced three co-equal priorities for my tenure.  First, I pledged that we would do everything possible to protect the people of this District from violent crime.  Second, I promised that we would be equally relentless in rooting out corruption in our financial markets.  And third, I promised to better connect with the communities we serve and to do more through enhanced civil rights enforcement to push back on the forces of hate that are on the march.  Fast forward to 2024 and these priorities are as urgent today as they were at the start of my tenure.  But SDNY, as always, continues to evolve – and be nimble – to meet new threats to the people of this District.  That’s why I am announcing that, in addition to these three priorities, SDNY will add two more for 2024: fighting the fentanyl epidemic and public corruption. 

The Fight Against Fentanyl

Fentanyl continues to inflict too much harm on too many people.  This Office has sought to and will continue to fight the problem on all levels.  We have brought groundbreaking charges against the leadership of the Sinaloa cartel and against some of the Chinese precursor chemical companies that fuel the cartels.  But even as we address the criminal networks that fuel the epidemic, we are also focused on addressing the devastation fentanyl brings to everyday people here in this District.  For instance, we brought a heartbreaking case involving the overdose death of a baby at a daycare center in the Bronx – a case that truly shocked the conscience of this city.  Our work is far from done.  In 2024, SDNY will continue to attack the fentanyl epidemic in a comprehensive way – from root to branch.  

The Fight Against Public Corruption

SDNY remains committed to aggressively rooting out corruption in our financial markets.  But, in this District, corruption doesn’t just pollute our financial markets, it also pollutes our politics and our public institutions.  It’s time to clean it up.  This Office has a long tradition of bringing complex public corruption cases.  We’re going to continue that focus in 2024.  We will proceed without fear or favor, and without any regard to partisan politics.  That’s in our DNA.  

SDNY Whistleblower Pilot Program

This Office is always looking for new ways to enhance our effectiveness and stay ahead of the curve.  We are pleased to announce a new tool in our toolkit that will enhance our 2024 enforcement efforts: SDNY’s Whistleblower Pilot Program.  The program encourages early and voluntary self-disclosure of criminal conduct by individual participants in certain non-violent offenses.  In exchange for self-disclosure and cooperation against others involved in the criminal conduct, SDNY will enter into a non-prosecution agreement where certain specified conditions are met, including, importantly, the condition that the Government was not previously aware of the criminal conduct that is the subject of the disclosure.  By providing clarity on the requirements and the benefits of such self-disclosure, we seek to incentivize individuals and their counsel to provide actionable and timely information.  That will, in turn, help us bring more misconduct to light and better protect the communities we serve.  We encourage people who qualify for the Whistleblower Pilot Program to take advantage of the opportunity to come clean, cooperate, and get on the right side of the law.  Our message to the world remains: Call us before we call you."


Nicholas Biase
(212) 637-2600

Updated January 19, 2024

Press Release Number: 24-008