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Press Release

U.S. Attorney Hickton to Resign

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

PITTSBURGH – David J. Hickton, United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, has announced his resignation effective midnight on November 28. U.S. Attorney Hickton has served as the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania since August 12, 2010.

“The opportunity to serve as a United States Attorney in this administration has been the professional privilege of a lifetime and the highlight of my career,” said U.S. Attorney Hickton.

During his tenure as U.S. Attorney, Mr. Hickton’s signature achievements include:

Addressing the Cyber Threat

  • Brought first of its kind indictment against five members of the Chinese military for economic espionage against Pittsburgh-based companies and organizations.
  • Created a dedicated section in the U.S. Attorney’s Office to focus on cybercrime and national security.
  • Prosecuted ground-breaking cases such as Darkode, the largest English-speaking cybercrime forum, and Evgeniy Bogachev, creator of GameOver Zeus and Cryptolocker malware, among others.

Combatting the National Heroin and Opioid crisis

  • Co-Chaired the National Heroin Task Force.
  • Formed U.S. Attorney’s Working Group on Drug Overdoses and Addiction which includes key federal, state and local law enforcement along with public health and public safety staff.
  • Brought community impact prosecutions against large-scale heroin traffickers and worked to reduce stigma, minimize the criminalization of addiction and improve access to treatment.

Enhancing Community Police Trust

  • Assembled a Community Police Working Group in 2011 to build trust for and from law enforcement and the citizens they serve.
  • Established a civil rights section in U.S. Attorney’s Office.
  • Pittsburgh selected as one of six pilot cities for the National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice by Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

Significant Civil Recoveries and Achievements

  • EDMC - Achieved a historic settlement of $95.5 million, the largest ever False Claims Act (FCA) recovery of Department of Education funds.
  • PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS – Secured fundamental changes throughout the prison system to humanely address the issues of unconstitutional confinement conditions for those suffering from serious mental illness and for victims of institutional sexual assault.
  • GAMEOVER ZEUS BOTNET– Utilized civil injunctions in conjunction with criminal prosecution to dismantle a global network of infected victim computers used by cyber criminals to steal millions of dollars from businesses and consumers.

As of November 29, Soo C. Song will assume leadership of the office as Acting U.S. Attorney. Ms. Song is currently the First Assistant U.S. Attorney and has served in the Department of Justice since 1995. She is a graduate of Yale University and the George Washington Law School.

Updated November 14, 2016