The Department of Justice has assembled leadership for its National Security Division. At the helm is Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Brad Wiegmann, a DOJ news release announced today.
Wiegmann, who reports directly to Assistant Attorney General David Kris, will take full-time leadership of the National Security Division after he completes his work as co-chair of the President’s Detention Policy Task-Force, which is looking for ways to shut down Guantanamo Bay and provide trials for detainees. Backing Wiegmann up will be Donald Vieira, who joins the NSD leadership as Chief of Staff to Wiegman, the press release said. Vieira has served in the NSD previously, as a Counterespionage Section attorney and on staff of the inter-agency Committee on Foreign Investment of the United States (CFIUS), which reviews foreign investments in strategic industries.
From the DOJ:
Todd Hinnen is the Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Law and Policy. Mr. Hinnen joins the Division from the U.S. Senate, where he served as Chief Counsel to then-Senator Joe Biden. Previously, Mr. Hinnen was a Director at the National Security Council’s Combating Terrorism Directorate and a Trial Attorney in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.
Tashina Gauhar is the Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Intelligence. Ms. Gauhar has extensive experience working with the U.S. Intelligence Community and has held a variety of national security positions within the Department since 2001, including serving as an Assistant Counsel in the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review and later as the Deputy Chief of Operations in the Office of Intelligence, and recently the Chief of Operations. Prior to joining the Justice Department, Ms. Gauhar was an associate at the law firm of DLA Piper (then Piper Marbury Rudnick and Wolfe, LLP).
George Toscas is currently serving as the Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Counterterrorism and Counterespionage. Having entered the Department through the Attorney General’s Honors Program, Mr. Toscas is a career prosecutor with 16 years of prosecutorial experience. During his tenure, he has worked on some of the most sensitive and significant national security matters in the Department. Mr. Toscas previously served in the Counterterrorism Section and its predecessor, the Terrorism and Violent Crime Section, at the Justice Department.
This leadership team is assisted by Sheryl L. Walter, who will remain the Division’s Executive Officer. Ms. Walter previously served in the Justice Department as Chief of Staff in the former Office of Intelligence Policy and Review, as Acting Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs, and as an attorney-advisor in the Office of Legislative Affairs. Prior to joining the Department she worked at the United States Senate. Ms. Walter also has worked in the private sector as general counsel for a nonprofit research institute and as an associate at the law firm formerly known as Mayer, Brown and Platt. She clerked for the Honorable Donald P. Lay, Chief Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.
The work of the Division’s leadership team is also aided by experienced counsels and counselors:
Leonard Bailey is Senior Counselor to the Assistant Attorney General. Mr. Bailey and is spearheading the NSD’s new cyber efforts. Mr. Bailey comes to the NSD from the Criminal Division’s Computer Crimes and Intellectual Property Section. He has been with the Justice Department since 1991 and is widely respected within the Justice Department and the Intelligence Community for his knowledge of cyber issues.
Carrie Cordero is Counsel to the Assistant Attorney General. Ms. Cordero recently returned to the NSD from a joint duty assignment at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, where she served as a senior associate general counsel in the General Counsel’s office. Previously, Ms. Cordero was an attorney in the Justice Department’s Office of Intelligence and its predecessor, the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review, having joined DOJ through the Honor Program. She has also been a Special Assistant United States Attorney.
Brian Nelson is Special Counsel to the Assistant Attorney General. Mr. Nelson recently served in private practice as an associate with the law firm of Sidley Austin LLP in Washington, D.C. Earlier in his career, Mr. Nelson served as a Law Clerk to Judge Louis H. Pollak on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and to William A. Fletcher on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Posted in News | Comments Off
Attorney General Eric Holder announced his appointments of J. Douglas Wilson and Brad Wiegmann to lead two interagency task forces established by separate executive orders. Those orders, issued by President Obama on Jan. 22, called for a review of interrogation, transfer, and detention policies.
Wilson is chief of the National Security Unit in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Francisco. He is also a co-author with David Kris, Obama’s nominee to head the National Security Division at Main Justice, of a book on national security investigations and prosecutions. Wiegmann is the Principal Deputy and Chief of Staff in the National Security Division at Main Justice.
In statement from the Justice Department, Holder said:
“These appointments reflect our commitment to develop sound options for handling detainees in the future as well as policies on interrogation and transfer that uphold American values and national security interests…Having served in critical legal and national security positions over their careers, J. Douglas Wilson and Brad Wiegmann have the experience and judgment necessary to help us carry out these important tasks”
Holder appointed Wilson as the chief of the Special Task Force on Interrogation and Transfer Polices, charged with conducting a review to determine whether Army Field Manual interrogation guidelines, when used outside the military, provide appropriate guidance for broader intelligence gathering.
Wilson’s task force is also responsible for examining whether the transfer of detainees to other nations complies with domestic and international legal obligations.
Wiegmann is to lead the Special Task Force on Detention Policy, along with representatives of the Department of Defense. The executive order has charged this task force with conducting a review of the “lawful options available to the federal government for the apprehension, detention, trial, transfer, release or other disposition of individuals captured or apprehended in connection with armed conflicts and counterterrorism operations.”
The statement says that both task forces are to provide a report to the president within 180 days of the Jan. 22 issuance of the orders, unless Wilson or Wiegmann determine that an extension of time is necessary.