Posts Tagged ‘James Lackner’
Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

The veteran prosecutor who led the troubled Minnesota U.S. Attorney’s Office for 20 months after controversial Bush appointee Rachel Paulose was reassigned has been named to a new leadership post, the office announced today.

Rachel Paulose (DOJ)

Rachel Paulose (DOJ)

Frank Magill, who stepped down as Minnesota’s top federal prosecutor last month, will be counsel to newly confirmed U.S. Attorney B. Todd Jones. Magill was named acting U.S. Attorney in January 2008, after Paulose’s interregnum came to an end in November 2007. His appointment was viewed as a way to heal the rifts in the office, Minnesota Public Radio reported at the time.

Jones previously served as Minnesota U.S. Attorney in the Clinton adminstration, from 1998 to 2001, and had worked with Magill, who’s been a prosecutor in the office since 1990.

Paulose’s tenure was marked by politics and turbulence. She was appointed by then-U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales in February 2006 as an interim U.S. Attorney, at the age of 32. The Senate later confirmed her in December 2006.

Her predecessor, Tom Heffelfinger, was on a list of U.S. Attorneys slated for firing compiled by Kyle Sampson, Gonzales’ chief of staff. Heffelfinger, however, resigned before the firings.

During her short tenure, Paulose became a focus of complaints that the Bush Justice Department promoted some prosecutors based on ideology instead of competence. Several of her top managers stepped down in protest of her leadership style, including former First Assistant John Marti and former criminal division chief James Lackner.

Paulose demoted Marti in April 2007 after he reported her for mishandling classified documents. The U.S. Office of Special Counsel, an executive branch agency that deals with whistle-blower cases, determined last year that Paulose retaliated against Marti.  The complaint ended Paulose’s tenure; she was reassigned to a non-supervisory position in the Office of Legal Policy at Main Justice in November 2007 while the OSC investigated. Paulose is now at the Securities and Exchange Commission in Miami, we reported last month.

B. Todd Jones (Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi)

B. Todd Jones (Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi)

Jones made Marti his First Assistant and Lackner the office’s appellate chief, according the U.S. Attorney’s office announcement. We reported last month that Jones intended to make Marti his deputy.

Here are the appointments made by Jones, with biographies from the U.S. Attorney’s office:

  • Frank Magill (Counsel to the U.S. Attorney)
    Before the appointment, he served as U.S. Attorney for the District of Minnesota from January 2008 to August 2009 and First Assistant U.S. Attorney from July 2007 to January 2008. From 1998 to July 2007, he headed the Office’s economic crimes section. Magill, who joined the Office in 1990, graduated from Georgetown University in 1981 and earned his law degree from the Georgetown Law Center in 1985. Prior to his tenure with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Magill was employed at the Dorsey & Whitney law firm in Minneapolis.
  • John Marti (First Assistant)
    Prior to this appointment, Marti worked in the Office’s economic crimes section, prosecuting financial and public corruption crimes. Marti, who joined the Office in November 2000, also was the First Assistant U.S. Attorney from December 2006 to April 2007. Marti is a 1985 graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a 1991 graduate of the University of Oregon School of Law. Before joining the Office, Marti served as a Trial Attorney with the Fraud Section of the U.S. Department of Justice’s criminal division in Washington D.C. and on active duty with the U.S. Marine Corps.
  • James Lackner (Appellate Chief)
    Prior to this appointment, Lackner served as Senior Litigation Counsel from December 1994 to August 2005; Criminal Division Chief from August 2005 to April 2007; and First Assistant U.S. Attorney from March 2006 to December 2006. Lackner, who joined the Office in December 1983, graduated from Macalester College in 1975 and Northwestern University Law School in 1978. He joined the Office after working in the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office.
  • Andrew S. Dunne (Criminal Division Chief)
    Before this appointment, Dunne served as the Office’s narcotics crimes section chief from 1997 to September 2006 and was an Assistant Director for Criminal Programs at the National Advocacy Center in Columbia, S.C., from 2007-2009. Dunne is a 1980 graduate of Springfield College (Mass.) and a 1986 graduate of the University of Notre Dame Law School. Before joining the Office in February 1990, Dunne worked at the law firm of Faegre & Benson in Minneapolis.
  • Greg G. Brooker (Civil Division Chief)
    Brooker was named to that post in 2007. Prior to that appointment, Brooker, who joined the Office in 1999, practiced law in the civil division. Brooker is a 1982 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and a 1985 graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School. Brooker clerked for Minnesota Supreme Court Justice George M. Scott from 1985-1986, worked at the law firm of Popham, Haik from 1986-1992 and served as an assistant city attorney for the City of Bloomington from 1992-1999.
  • Joseph T. Dixon III (Economic Crimes Section Chief)
    Dixon has served in that capacity since January 2008. Before then, he served as Senior Litigation Counsel and worked in the Office’s economic crimes, narcotics and major crimes crimes sections. Dixon graduated in 1991 from the University of Wisconsin and earned his law degree in 1995 from the Columbia School of Law. He clerked for U.S. Court of Appeals Eighth Circuit Judge Gerald W. Heaney from 1995-1996. Prior to joining the Office in January 2001, Dixon worked for the law firm of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton in New York.
  • Michelle E. Jones (Major Crimes Section Chief)
    She has held that position since March 2008. Jones, who began her career in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in March 2000, is a 1989 graduate of the University of California at Berkley and a 1992 graduate of Harvard Law School. She clerked for Massachusetts Appeals Court Justice Frederick L. Brown from 1992-1993 and U.S. District of Minnesota Judge James M. Rosenbaum from 1993-1995. Before accepting a job with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Jones was employed at the law firm of Howrey & Simon in Washington, D.C.
  • Carol M. Kayser (Narcotics Crimes Section Chief)
    Prior to that appointment, she worked in the major crimes section. Kayser also served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Georgia from 1999-2008. Kayser is a 1983 graduate of Northwestern University and a 1988 graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School. Before her employment with the Justice Department, Kayser served as an assistant district attorney for Dekalb County, Georgia.