GreeneStreets. Feature photo of a back country road in Greene County, Indiana. Courtesy of Nick Schneider.

Four new prosecutors to be added to Southern District of Indiana to focus on drugs and violent crime

INDIANAPOLIS – Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Josh J. Minkler, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana (SDIN), 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 (AUSA’s) 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."

Today, the Department announced its allocation of three AUSAs to focus on violent crime and one AUSA to tackle civil opioid enforcement needs in SDIN.

“Two of our top priorities are reducing gun violence and meeting the challenge of the opioid epidemic in this district,” said Minkler.

“This needed addition of AUSAs allows our office to address the district’s biggest threats head on and Hoosiers will soon be able to see real positive results.

"The number of shootings must decrease and Indiana will be the most inhospitable place in the country to push pills. Our neighbors and community deserve nothing less.”

In October 2017, United States Attorney Josh J. Minkler announced a Strategic Plan designed to shape and strengthen the District’s response to its most significant public safety challenges. This allocation of additional AUSAs will support the office’s firm commitment to collaborate with federal and local law enforcement agencies to prosecute more violent offenders in the district’s most violent geographic areas. In addition, this allocation will support the office’s promise to pursue civil and criminal remedies against those doctors, pharmacies, and medical providers who are furthering the opioid epidemic by illegally diverting pills for their own profit.