Source: United States Attorneys General
ADDITIONAL AUSA POSITION ALLOCATED IN CONJUNCTION WITH OPERATION SYNTHETIC OPIOID SURGE (S.O.S.)
SDWV Receives 1 of only 10 positions in the Country
CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Earlier today, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and U.S. Attorney Mike Stuart today announced Operation Synthetic Opioid Surge (S.O.S.), a new program that seeks to reduce the supply of deadly synthetic opioids in high impact areas and to identify wholesale distribution networks and international and domestic suppliers.
As part of Operation S.O.S., the Department of Justice selected the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia (SDWV) as one of only 10 districts in the nation, to launch this important enforcement surge. With Operation S.O.S., a new additional AUSA is being allocated to the District solely to focus on implementing the new surge.
In addition to the new resources of Operation S.O.S., the Attorney General and DOJ previously announced an additional four prosecutors are being allocated to the SDWV. The new prosecutors represent the largest single increase of new prosecutors in the history of the SDWV and the largest percentage increase for any district in the nation.
“In the six months since I became United States Attorney, five additional prosecutors have been allocated to my office,” said United States Attorney Mike Stuart. “It is unprecedented. More new positions than Miami, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Phoenix, or many of the largest, fastest growing areas in the country. Literally the largest percentage increase of any district in the entire nation. This is the largest increase of new AUSAs in the history of the SDWV and is a testament to the hard work and accomplishments of my entire team.
The number of cases we are prosecuting, particularly in the area of drugs and violent crimes, have substantially and exponentially increased since I took office. For example, we have seen a nearly 400% and 80% increase in prosecutions of illegal firearms and illicit narcotics, respectively. IT’S BIG! IT’S HUGELY BIG!
With five additional prosecutors, I can assure you this trend will continue and we can dedicate even more resources to our offices in Beckley and Huntington in addition to our growth in Charleston. I am beyond grateful for the trust and confidence the Attorney General and the Department of Justice have demonstrated in my leadership and in the efforts of my staff by awarding the District with such a significant increase in prosecutors.
We are excited by the opportunity to grow the office and bring in even more bright, capable, hard-working attorneys to focus on crime issues important to the citizens of West Virginia.
These are exciting times and maybe the most significant time for law enforcement in the history of southern West Virginia. We are literally shaping the future of law enforcement in this district for at least the next generation.”
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