Garland called his decision to return to private practice “bittersweet,” but said it was difficult to maintain the pace of his Justice Department job with his three young children.
“In this job, the schedule is so crisis driven, so emergency driven, you don’t have the ability in a real practical sense to plan your life, to plan your day,” Garland told the NLJ. “The pace of this job is like nothing I’ve ever known. It’s not sustainable for the long run with a family. The person who gets that most of all is the attorney general. He was supportive of my decision.”
Holder praised Garland’s work, pointing to his efforts on financial fraud, antitrust and intellectual property law.
Garland has been “instrumental in helping to reinvigorate the department’s core missions and re-establish its reputation for independence,” Holder said. “I’m grateful for his wise counsel, as well as his friendship, his sense of humor, and his tremendous respect for the work he’s helped to advance. Jim has served the Department of Justice—and his country—well, and we will truly miss him.”
In an interview with the newspaper last week, Garland described his time at the Justice Department as “an incredible life experience.”
Garland was born in Columbus, Ohio and graduated from Columbus Academy before heading to Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. After graduation, he took a job with Price Waterhouse (now PricewaterhouseCoopers). After two years, Garland enrolled at the University of Virginia School of Law.
He worked as a summer associate at Covington during law school and later clerked for Appeals Judge R. Guy Cole of the 6th Circuit. When he returned to Covington in 2001, Garland worked as a litigator on commercial cases, antitrust issues and white-collar criminal defense, often working directly with Holder, then a partner at Covington.
Because his job did not require Senate confirmation, Garland was part of the so-called “Day One Group” at the Justice Department, according to WhoRunsGov.com. After President Barack Obama took his oath of office, Garland and a handful of other political appointees also took their oaths and started work.
At the Justice Department, Garland handled antitrust issues, state and local law enforcement, and all criminal matters not related to national security. He served as the Attorney General’s point man for the department response to the economic crisis and advised Holder about when the federal government should seek the death penalty.
Garland is not the first top Holder aide to announce his departure; national security adviser Amy Jeffress is also leaving her position to become the Justice Department’s attaché at the U.S. Embassy in London.
Read the full interview with The National Law Journal here.
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The Justice Department has stepped up its enforcement of intellectual property rights, deploying prosecutors overseas to focus on the issue, training lawyers in U.S. Attorneys’ offices on IP investigations and prosecutions and approving the hiring of more FBI agents to focus on IP crime, according to the Obama administration’s new strategic plan on IP enforcement unveiled Tuesday.
Attorney General Eric Holder joined Vice President Joseph Biden and Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel at the White House Tuesday morning to announce the plan, which came out of a meeting held in December.
“Whether we’re talking about fake drugs that hurt…or knock off car tires that fall apart at 65 miles per hour causing injury and death, counterfeits kill. Counterfeits kill,” Biden said.
According to the plan, the DOJ will focus on the investigation of intellectual property theft involving health and safety; trade secrets and economic espionage; and commercial online piracy and counterfeiting.
Since the DOJ’s first IP enforcement initiative in 1999, intellectual property investigations and prosecutions have increased 800 percent, the report found.
The DOJ has 220 federal prosecutors in U.S. Attorneys’ offices who are specially trained to deal with intellectual property issues under the Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property (CHIP) coordinator program. Each U.S. Attorney’s office has at least one CHIP prosecutor, and 25 offices have a CHIP unit, the report said.
DOJ also has deployed two federal prosecutors as part of the Intellectual Property Law Enforcement Coordinator program — one to Bangkok, Thailand who will focus on IP enforcement in Southeast Asia, and another to Sofia, Bulgaria who will work on enforcement issues in Eastern Europe.
As part of the plan, the FBI will hire about 50 special agents by the end of fiscal 2010. The new agents will focus on IP investigations and operate out of field offices around the country and four enhanced intellectual property squads.
Holder, accompanied to the White House by Deputy Chief of Staff James Garland, did not speak at the announcement Tuesday, but said in a statement that the Justice Department “worked closely with Administration officials to develop key aspects of this strategic plan to better protect our nation’s ability to remain at the forefront of technological advancement, business development and job creation.”
The Department of Justice “is confronting this threat with a strong and coordinated response at home and abroad to ensure American entrepreneurs and businesses continue to develop, innovate and create,” Holder said.
In a statement, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) applauded Espinel’s work on the strategic plan.
“The plan highlights the importance of effective and efficient enforcement of American intellectual property rights, which in turn protects American jobs and promotes economic growth,” Leahy said.
The strategic plan is embedded below. The portion concerning the Justice Department begins on page 32.