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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Ohio

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, December 12, 2016

U.S. Attorney Glassman Awards Outstanding Performance Recognitions to District Employees

CINCINNATI – U.S. Attorney Benjamin C. Glassman recognized nine employees of the Southern District of Ohio in three categories for their distinguished public service in his first annual United States Attorney’s Awards in Outstanding Performance in three categories.

 

“These awards give us the opportunity to highlight some of the top-notch work that’s happening every day in our District,” Glassman said. “I commend all of the recipients for their work, which is truly exemplary of what this office does on a daily basis.”

 

The United States Attorney’s Award for Outstanding Performance in Legal Support is presented to a support staff individual who has executed exemplary support for the District’s attorneys. This year’s recipient, Laura Griffin, has been recognized for creating a model system for appellate sections in U.S. Attorney’s Offices across the country.

 

Griffin was also recognized for her legal support as this year’s recipient of the Attorney General’s Award for Excellence in Legal Support. She has implemented a system of formal moot courts for every oral argument conducted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys and is in the development of a training program for support staff on appellate rules and procedures. Griffin also assisted in the creation and development of an extensive intranet site for the Appellate Division that was praised by Evaluation and Review Staff evaluators as a model for U.S. Attorney’s Offices throughout the country.

 

“Laura’s hard work, enthusiasm, and innovation have served to guide the Appellate Division from its infancy into one of the most respected Appellate Divisions in the country, universally praised by members of our office, evaluators, and the Judges of the Sixth Circuit,” Glassman said.

 

This year’s recipient of the United States Attorney’s Office Award for Outstanding Performance as an Assistant United States Attorney leads the District’s counterterrorism efforts. Not only has Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Mangan successfully brought to conclusion two national security cases in recent months, but he did so simultaneously.

 

Mangan prosecuted Munir Abdulkader, who plotted to attack a military official and then a local police station in Southern Ohio, and Christopher Lee Cornell, who plotted to attack government officials at the State of the Union Address. Through Mangan’s diligent prosecutorial efforts, the two defendants were sentenced to 20 years and 30 years in federal prison, respectively. Mangan has also been nominated by the Department of Justice’s National Security Division for national recognition for his remarkable work.

 

“Tim is the type of prosecutor that works tirelessly for justice,” Glassman said. “There can be no higher priority for a U.S. Attorney’s Office than our national security, and the Southern District of Ohio is fortunate to have someone as diligent and skilled as Tim leading our efforts in some of the most difficult and important cases.”

 

The 2016 United States Attorney’s Award for Outstanding Performance as a Litigative Team recognizes those involved in an unprecedented series of investigations and prosecutions in this District. The successful prosecutions of the Short North Posse gang in Columbus represent the largest federal murder investigation and prosecutions in Ohio history.

 

Assistant United States Attorneys David DeVillers, Kevin Kelley and Brian Martinez; Paralegal Specialists Christin Werner and Emily Sroka; and Victim Witness Coordinators Barbara Vanarsdall and Acquanette Lindsay were recognized for their work on the case.

 

Twenty individuals were indicted in the racketeering case in October 2014, with charges that included murders, attempted murders, drug trafficking, weapons offenses, extortion and robbery. The prosecutions held the gang accountable for 14 previously unsolved homicides. Six of the defendants were convicted in two separate jury trials, 13 defendants pleaded guilty, and one died awaiting trial. All of the defendants face life in prison.

 

“Our team held accountable a group of men who had perpetuated a multi-generational tradition of terrorizing Columbus neighborhoods through violence and intimidation,” Glassman said. “This team’s successful prosecutions sent a clear message that the gang’s reign has ended and such behavior will not go unpunished. It is impossible to accomplish something of this magnitude without tremendous teamwork, and the recipients of this award achieved unprecedented victories for justice in the Southern District of Ohio by combining their extraordinary skill and dedication in unprecedented collaboration.”

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Office and Personnel Updates
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Updated December 16, 2016