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Press Release

Sanford C. Coats To Step Down After Serving Six Years As United States Attorney

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Oklahoma

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma -- United States Attorney Sanford C. Coats has announced his resignation effective on January 15, 2016.    Coats plans on taking some time to determine his next professional endeavor.

"First, I would like to thank the President for giving me this incredible opportunity to serve as the U.S. Attorney," said U.S. Attorney Coats.  "Second, I would like to thank the women and men of the US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Oklahoma for your commitment to justice.  You are true public servants and I was consistently in awe of your work and dedication.  Finally, I would like to thank federal, state, tribal and local law enforcement for your partnership and friendship over the last twelve years."

Coats was nominated by President Barack Obama to become United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma on September 30, 2009. The nomination was confirmed by the United States Senate on December 24, 2009, and Coats was sworn-in on December 30, 2009.

As United States Attorney, Coats also successfully prosecuted many civil and criminal cases.  In addition, Coats served in many key positions in the Department of Justice, including on the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee (AGAC), Vice-Chair of the AGAC Native American Issues Subcommittee, Co-Chair of the Domestic Terrorism Executive Committee, Co-Chair the AGAC Terrorism and National Security Subcommittee, and Co-Chair of the AGAC Crimes Against Children Subcommittee.

Prior to serving as United States Attorney, Coats served as Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) from 2004-2009. He worked in all areas of the Criminal Division where he prosecuted a variety of cases, including child prostitution, child pornography, banking fraud, tax evasion, crimes in Indian Country, illegal immigration, complex drug conspiracies, firearm crimes and violence associated with illegal street gangs. As an AUSA, has served as Team Leader of the Major Crimes Team and office Project Safe Childhood Coordinator.

In 2007, Coats volunteered for short-term assignment to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New Orleans as part of a special initiative by the Department of Justice following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina to assist in the prosecution of violent, firearm and drug crime. Also in 2007, Coats received a national Director’s Award for Superior Performance as an Assistant United States Attorney for his work in the prosecution of multiple child prostitution cases.

Prior to joining the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Coats was in private practice in Oklahoma City representing corporations and individuals in litigation. Coats has been a practicing attorney since 1999, after receiving a Juris Doctorate from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1998. Prior to law school, Coats attended Tulane University of Louisiana where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1994.

Updated January 6, 2016

Office and Personnel Updates