Attorney General Jeff Sessions and U.S. Attorney for the District of Western Tennessee, D. Michael Dunavant announced that the Department of Justice is taking a dramatic step to increase resources to combat violent crime, enforce our immigration laws, and help roll back the devastating opioid crisis.
In the largest increase in decades, the Department of Justice is allocating 311 new Assistant United States Attorneys to assist in priority areas. Those allocations are as follows: 190 violent crime prosecutors, 86 civil enforcement prosecutors, and 35 additional immigration prosecutors. Many of the civil enforcement AUSA’s will support the newly created Prescription Interdiction & Litigation Task Force which targets the opioid crisis at every level of the distribution system.
"Under President Trump's strong leadership, the Department of Justice is going on offense against violent crime, illegal immigration, and the opioid crisis—and today we are sending in reinforcements," said Attorney General Jeff Sessions. "We have a saying in my office that a new federal prosecutor is 'the coin of the realm.' When we can eliminate wasteful spending, one of my first questions to my staff is if we can deploy more prosecutors to where they are needed. I have personally worked to re-purpose existing funds to support this critical mission, and as a former federal prosecutor myself, my expectations could not be higher. These exceptional and talented prosecutors are key leaders in our crime fighting partnership. This addition of new Assistant U.S. Attorney positions represents the largest increase in decades."
In the District of Western Tennessee, one of these AUSAs will focus on violent crime and one on civil enforcement.
U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said: "The Department of Justice has been very responsive and generous in the resources that have been allocated to the Western District of Tennessee within the last few months. On December 21, 2017, the Attorney General announced that the Western District of Tennessee would receive two (2) new and additional federal prosecutor positions that have now been solely dedicated and assigned to aggressively prosecute violent crimes cases in Memphis and Jackson. Now, with this additional violent crime prosecutor position, we can continue to increase our caseloads in the area of firearms, gangs, and violent crimes in Memphis and across West Tennessee. Likewise, with the allocation of the new Civil ACE position, our office will be better positioned to affirmatively litigate cases in the growing areas of health care fraud, elder abuse, nursing home complaints, and prescription opioid diversion. We are thankful for all of these resources from the Department of Justice, and we are committed to the effective use of these new positions to reduce violent crime and handle complex civil litigation on behalf of the United States."
To see more information on the locations of the 311 Assistant United States Attorney positions click here.