Posts Tagged ‘Preet Bharara’
Monday, December 13th, 2010

Southern District of New York U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara on Friday announced four changes in his White Plains office, Mid-Hudson News reported.

Diana Gujarati will serve as chief of the White Plains division. She joined the office in 1999 and has worked as deputy chief of the White Plains division and deputy chief of the appeals unit in the criminal division.

Michael English will serve as deputy chief of the White Plains division. He joined the office in 2005 and served in the violent crimes unit in Manhattan.

Margery Feinzig and Cynthia Dunne will serve as senior trial counsel of the White Plains division. Feinzig previously served as chief of the White Plains division from 2004 until earlier this year, and supervised the prosecution of former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik on tax fraud and other charges. Dunne has worked in the office’s civil division and has handled high-priority criminal cases in the White Plains division.

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Friday, July 16th, 2010

The U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York took their independence seriously and asked tough questions about their role in the spy exchange between the United States and Russia, the district’s top prosecutor said.

Preet Bharara (photo by Andrew Ramonas/Main Justice)

“We took seriously our responsibility to be independent thinkers and responsible enforcers of justice,” U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara told The New York Times. “It’s very easy for me to say that, because we agreed with what was going on, but it’s important for people to know that we thought about that.”

Bharara and two of his aides monitored the arrests from an FBI command center, he said. He sent prosecutors to courtrooms in Alexandria, Va., and Boston to handle the arraignments, while the lead prosecutor on the case and co-chief of the office’s terrorism unit, Michael Farbiarz, oversaw the efforts in Manhattan.

Bharara said he called an emergency meeting on June 29 when he was told the idea of a swap was serious. Farbiarz, his deputy Boyd M. Johnson III and Criminal Division Chief Richard B. Zabel met in his office and conducted a review of the earlier spy swap cases. Bharara said the review was helpful because it indicated that his office was not “in uncharted territory.”

“If something would have violated our principles,” he said, “we would have objected.” Bharara said he felt strongly that the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s office and the Justice Department “should never be an extension of or a rubber stamp for the White House.”

The dialogue over whether they were doing the right thing continued as two other Assistant U.S. Attorneys, Jason B. Smith and Glen Kopp, worked to secure plea deals, Bharara said.

Read The New York Times story here.

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York is taking on the Gambino family.

On Tuesday, SDNY prosecutors charged 14 members of the notorious organized crime network with racketeering, murder, sex trafficking and other crimes. The defendants include Daniel Marino, the current head of the Gambino family.

SDNY U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara and George Venizelos, the Special Agent-in-Charge of the New York Office of the FBI, announced the charges Tuesday afternoon and unsealed a 61-page indictment. One member was arrested April 16. Twelve others were arrested Tuesday morning; one of the defendants remains at large.

“Modern mobsters may be less colorful, less flamboyant, and less glamorous than some of their predecessors, but they are still terrorizing businesses, using baseball bats, and putting people in the hospital,” Bharara said. “Today, the Gambino Family has lost one of its leaders, and many of its rising stars have now fallen.”

Venizelos said the Gambino family is not the same as it was under legendary mob boss John J. Gotti, and that the leadership maintains a lower profile. “No crime seemed too depraved to be exploited if it was a money-maker, including the sexual exploitation of a 15-year-old,” Venizelos said. “In truth, despite the popular fascination, it was never really about the thousand-dollar suits. It was — and is — about murder, mayhem and money.”

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Elie Honig, Steve Kwok and Jason Hernandez are in charge of the prosecution, according to a news release, and the case is being handled by the SDNY Organized Crime Unit.

A summary of the information in the indictment, as prepared by the Justice Department, is below, followed by an embedded version of the full indictment.

Daniel Marino is a longtime member and is currently a boss of the Gambino Family. In that capacity, Marino has over 200 fully-inducted or “made” mafia members under his command, as well as hundreds of associates who commit crimes with and for the mafia. Thomas Orefice and Onofrio Modica are currently soldiers of the Gambino Family acting under Marino’s supervision. Orefice and Modica each supervise crews that include Dominick Difiore, Anthony Manzella, Michael Scotto, Michael Scarpaci, Thomas Scarpaci, David Eisler and Salvatore Borgia, all of whom are charged with racketeering and racketeering conspiracy. The indictment also charges other individuals who committed crimes with and for the Gambino Family, including Steve Maiurro, Keith Dellitalia, Suzanne Porcelli and Anthony Vecchione.

In addition to the racketeering charges, the defendants are charged with the following crimes:

Murder of Thomas Spinelli

Marino is charged with the 1989 murder of Thomas Spinelli, a made member of the Gambino Family. In the months leading up to Spinelli’s death, concern arose in the Gambino Family about his testimony in a federal grand jury about many of the mafia’s members and activities. As a result, Marino, working with various co-conspirators, including John J. Gotti (who was then Boss of the Gambino Family) and Salvatore Gravano (who was then Underboss) set out to kill Spinelli to prevent him from further testifying. Marino and his co-conspirators lured Spinelli to a window company in Brooklyn, where he was shot in the head and killed. Marino then helped to dispose of Spinelli’s body, which has never been found.

Murder of Frank Hydell

Marino is also charged for the 1998 murder of Frank Hydell. In 1997, suspicion arose within the Gambino Family that Hydell, Marino’s nephew, was cooperating with law enforcement which, in fact, was the case. Based on these suspicions, various Gambino Family members and associates plotted to kill Hydell and sought Marino’s approval for the hit. Upon Marino’s authorization to kill Hydell, the Gambino Family members and associates lured Hydell to a strip club in Staten Island where he was shot three times in the face and back. He died in the strip club’s parking lot.

Murder of James DiGuglielmo and Richard Sbarra

Modica is charged with the double murder of James DiGuglielmo and Richard Sbarra. Modica and DiGuglielmo became involved in a drug-related dispute. As a result, on Aug. 22, 1987, Modica drove his motorcycle with a shooter riding on the back to a crowded parking lot where the shooter opened fire at DiGuglielmo. DiGuglielmo and Sbarra, an innocent bystander, were killed in the drive-by shooting.

Sex Trafficking and Sex Trafficking of A Minor

Orefice, Difiore, Manzella, Scotto, Eisler, Maiurro and Porcelli are charged with sex trafficking and sex trafficking of a minor. From 2008 to 2009, the defendants operated a prostitution business where young women and girls — including an underage girl who was 15 years old at the time — were exploited and sold for sex. The defendants first recruited various young women and girls — ages 15 through 19 — to work as prostitutes. The defendants then advertised the prostitution business on Craigslist and other websites. The defendants drove the women to appointments in Manhattan, Brooklyn, New Jersey and Staten Island to have sex with clients. The defendants then took approximately 50 percent of the money paid to the young women. The defendants also made the women available for sex to gamblers at a weekly, high-stakes poker games that Orefice and his crew ran.

Jury Tampering

In 1992, then-Boss John J. Gotti was on trial for federal racketeering and murder charges in the Eastern District of New York. Modica, along with various other Gambino Family members, took part in a plot to locate the anonymous, sequestered jurors sitting on that trial. Modica and the others eventually penetrated various security measures, and located the jury at the hotel where it was sequestered. The plan to tamper with the jury was called off, however, when Gotti came to believe that the jury would not convict him, even without outside interference.

Extortions and Assaults

Marino is charged with extorting broad swaths of the construction industry in and around New York from at least the 1980s to the present. Through the use of violence and threats, Marino and the Gambino Family have extorted millions of dollars annually from unions, contractors, developers and suppliers.

Orefice, Difiore, Manzella, Scotto, Michael Scarpaci, Thomas Scarpaci, Dellitalia, Eisler and Vecchione are charged with extorting payments from various businesses and individuals through the use of violence and threats. The defendants targeted businesses in the home heating oil industry and the financial services industry, as well as various individuals in and around New York City.

Several of the extortions resulted in serious beatings. For example:

* In December 2005, after an extortion victim failed to make a payment, Orefice, Difiore and Dellitalia punched and used a baseball bat to beat the victim.
* In 2008, Orefice and Difiore tracked down another extortion victim who failed to make a payment, beat him viciously, and left him on the street.
* In the summer of 2009, members of Orefice’s crew went to the office of a business owner in an attempt to shake him down, demanded to see their extortion victim, and, when refused, threatened the business owner’s office staff.

Wire Fraud

Orefice and Manzella are charged with defrauding various high-end restaurants in New York City by inflating invoices for meat orders placed with Manzella’s company and paying kickbacks to the chefs responsible for ordering the meat. The invoices were sometimes inflated by as much as 40 percent of actual costs. To ensure that the chefs at the restaurants would continue ordering meat from Manzella’s company, and to encourage them to turn a blind eye to the scam, Orefice and Manzella kicked back about five percent of the proceeds back to them.

Narcotics Trafficking

Orefice, Difiore and Borgia are charged with trafficking in narcotics — including cocaine, oxycontin, and marijuana — for and on behalf of the Gambino Family.


Marino, Orefice, Difiore, Scotto, Michael Scarpaci and Thomas Scarpaci are charged with making and collecting extortionate extensions of credit — commonly known as “loansharking.” When debtors became unable to keep up their repayment obligations, the defendants threatened them. In one series of consensually-recorded discussions about the loansharking operation, a loanshark victim was said to have been “roughed up” and put in the trunk of a car. The participants then agreed that, if necessary, firearms, including AK-47s and AR-14s, could be obtained to help ensure repayment from debtors.


Marino, Orefice, Modica, Difiore, Manzella, Michael Scarpaci, Thomas Scarpaci, Eisler, Borgia and Dellitalia are charged with running illegal gambling operations for the Gambino Family. These operations included an internet-based sports betting, or “bookmaking,” operation, and a regular, high-stakes card game.

The indictment also seeks forfeiture of the proceeds of the alleged crimes, including of $20 million as to counts one and two.

Marino, Daniel, Et Al. S1 Indictment

Monday, April 5th, 2010

The U.S. Attorney’s office in the Southern District of New York collected $570 million in forfeitures between Oct. 1, 2008, and Sept. 30, 2009, The New York Daily News reported Sunday. The breakdown includes $450 million from criminal forfeitures and $120 million in civil forfeitures. The total amount is more than 11 times SDNY’s annual budget.

Under federal forfeiture laws, federal prosecutors can seize personal items that were were stolen or bought with tainted cash. After the items are seized, they are auctioned off  to compensate victims and fund new probes.

“They think they can do some time, get out and then be able to pull out their ill-gotten gains and keep it,” SDNY U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said. “Our answer to them is: ‘No, you can’t.’”

“For the victims, we are often all they have, so we are careful not just to get the bad guy, but to get their recompense,” he added.

Over the past five fiscal years, a seven-member asset forfeiture team in the Manhattan-based office, led by Sharon Cohen Levin, has collected more than $2 billion in forfeitures, more than any other team nationwide, the newspaper reported. “They have collected more than the GNP of a country like Belize,” Bharara added.

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

Although Attorney General Eric Holder has reconsidered his decision to hold the trial of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in Manhattan, some continue to voice support for the location, The Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.

In November, Holder announced that KSM, the self-described “mastermind” of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, would be tried in the Southern District of New York. The office is headed by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara. Holder quickly came under fire for the decision and in February decided to move the trial out of SDNY.

One of the locations under consideration from the start was the Eastern District of Virginia, which hosted the spring 2006 trial of Zacarias Moussaoui. The Alexandria, Va.,-based district is the only place to date that has held a Sept. 11, 2001-related trial. The LA Times reports that as Justice Department officials, aided by Holder and President Barack Obama, continue to look for a trial location, they remain steadfast that the trial should be conducted where one of the attacks occurred, meaning New York City, Northern Virginia or western Pennsylvania.

However, those outside the DOJ remain divided on where the trial should take place.

Ron Kuby, a New York City criminal defense lawyer who has represented terrorism defendants for three decades said, KSM “has said repeatedly and publicly, ‘I did it. Kill me.’ And the government has said repeatedly and publicly, ‘He did it. We want to kill him.’” He added, “It sounds like a plan. Not a lot can go wrong.”

However, Larry Homenick and Tina Rowe — the two top U.S. marshals who coordinated security in Denver for the 1997 trial of Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh — said the world has dramatically changed in the past decade. When McVeigh was tried, the concern was that anti-government militias might create trouble. Now, the concerns include suicide bombers and airplane attacks, the U.S. marshals told The LA Times.

Both said the trial should not take place in the crowded borough of Manhattan. “That case in New York would be like the McVeigh trial on steroids,” Homenick told The LA Times.

Another concern is that having New York host the trial would make the city a target for another attack. But Bernard V. Kleinman, a lawyer who represented Ramzi Ahmed Yousef in the 1993 World Trade Center attack disagrees. “New York has been a target for years,” he told The LA Times. Kleinman added that KSM and his co-defendants might plead guilty, which would mean short sentencing hearings. He also told The LA Times, ” It’s important they hold the trial right there” because of what happened there.

Defense attorney James J. Brosnahan — who represented John Walker Lindh who was tried in Alexandria, Va., for fighting with the Taliban — told The LA Times neither he nor his client felt they were in any danger. “Courts today are built to deal with all kinds of problems.”

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

Bernard Madoff’s former director of operations was charged with conspiracy, securities fraud and tax crimes in the Southern District of New York, the Justice Department announced Thursday.

Daniel Bonventre, who began working at Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities, LLC in 1968, was arrested Thursday morning, the latest in the fallout from the Madoff Ponzi scheme. Thus far Madoff and two others have pleaded guilty in the case, while two computer programmers who worked for Madoff have been arrested and charged. The ongoing case has kept Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara a busy man.

Here is the DOJ news release:



NEW YORK – Preet Bharara, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Joseph M. Demarest Jr., the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the FBI’s New York Field Division, and Patricia J. Haynes, the Special Agent-in-Charge of the New York Field Office of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), announced today that Daniel Bonventre, the former Director of Operations for Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities, LLC (BLMIS), was arrested this morning on a criminal Complaint charging him with conspiracy; securities fraud; falsifying books and records of a broker-dealer; false filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC); and filing false federal tax returns.

As alleged in the complaint unsealed today in Manhattan federal court:

For decades, Bernard L. Madoff purported to provide investment advisory (IA) services through BLMIS. In fact, Madoff defrauded thousands of IA clients out of billions of dollars through an elaborate Ponzi scheme.

In 1968, Bonventre was employed at BLMIS and served as its Director of Operations beginning at least as early as 1978. In that capacity, Bonventre was responsible for, among other things: (a) maintaining and supervising the production of the principal internal accounting documents for BLMIS, including its general ledger (the G/L) and financial statements; (b) maintaining the stock record for BLMIS and resolving any discrepancies between internal and external records; (c) supervising the use and reconciliation of BLMIS bank accounts through which the Market Making, Proprietary Trading, and IA business operations were funded; and (d) supervising BLMIS employees who were responsible for accounting and other “back office” functions, including settlement and clearing of trades executed by the Market Making and Proprietary Trading operations.

As Director of Operations, Bonventre directed that false entries be made in the G/L that concealed the scope of the IA operations and understated BLMIS’s liabilities by billions of dollars. From 1997 to 2008, more than $750 million of IA investor funds were used to support BLMIS’s Market Making and Proprietary Trading operations, but were accounted for on BLMIS’s books and records, including the G/L, so as to conceal the true source of the funds. Moreover, as Bonventre knew, the G/L did not accurately reflect the assets contained in the bank and brokerage accounts into which IA investor funds were deposited, and likewise did not reflect the liability of BLMIS to its IA clients that arose from the custody of IA client funds in those accounts. At various points in time, the assets and associated liabilities of BLMIS’s IA operations, which were omitted from the G/L, ranged from millions to billions of dollars.

Between November 2005 and June 2006, BLMIS experienced a liquidity crisis caused by IA clients’ demands for withdrawals that exceeded cash on hand. Rather than sell securities to meet those demands – which could not be done because BLMIS had not actually purchased any such securities on behalf of those Clients – Bonventre requested $145 million of loans from a bank, using $154 million of an IA client’s bonds as collateral, to meet obligations to other IA clients. During the same period, Bonventre monitored lines of credit, which BLMIS drew down by more than $340 million and used to meet IA clients’ withdrawal requests. Bonventre also created false and fraudulent books and records that had the effect of disguising $262 million worth of payments to IA clients from the principal bank account that funded BLMIS’s operations as purchases of bonds and other debt instruments when, in fact, no such purchases had been made.

During the liquidity crisis, BLMIS was required to file Financial and Operational Combined Uniform Single Reports (FOCUS Reports) with the SEC. Those FOCUS Reports require the production of basic information that amounts to a condensed version of a broker-dealer’s general ledger. Because the G/L was inaccurate, as Bonventre well knew, the FOCUS Reports were likewise false because they failed accurately to reflect BLMIS’s assets and liabilities. For example, one such report, for the month of April 2006, in the midst of the above-described liquidity crisis, failed to reflect at least $299 million in BLMIS liabilities related to $154 million of an IA client’s bonds and the $145 million that BLMIS had borrowed using those bonds as collateral.

In as early as 1983, Bonventre also had his own IA account at BLMIS. Between 2002 and 2006, Bonventre obtained more than $1.8 million in at least three fictitious backdated trades that appeared in his account. For example, one purported trade, which appeared in Bonventre’s IA account in 2002, included a purchase that was backdated twelve years, to 1990, and generated purported long-term capital gains of nearly $1 million. Bonventre is also charged with four counts of filing false federal tax returns related to his accounting for the three fictitious trades, and his failure to report a total of approximately $273,620.24 in income that he obtained from BLMIS bank accounts in 2003, 2004, 2006, and 2007.

Bonventre, 63, faces a statutory maximum sentence totaling 77 years in prison: five years on count one (conspiracy), 20 years on each of counts two, three and four (securities fraud, falsifying books and records of a broker-dealer, and false filings with the SEC), and 3 years on each of counts five through eight (subscribing to a false tax return).

Bonventre will be presented later today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Theodore H. Katz in Manhattan federal court.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara stated: “As Bernard Madoff’s Director of Operations, Daniel Bonventre allegedly authored the fraudulent books that for years effectively hid the doomed state of an investment firm founded in fraud. Today’s arrest reflects the government’s ongoing commitment to ensure that those who are criminally responsible for this massive Ponzi scheme will be held accountable. Together with our law enforcement partners at the FBI and IRS, we will continue to investigate this colossal deception.”

FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Joseph Demarest Jr. stated: “Bonventre’s crimes consist not merely of failing to disclose material information about the Madoff investment advisory business. He affirmatively fabricated basic financial documents to conceal the dire condition of a financial empire that was really a house of cards. Bonventre’s is just the latest in a succession of arrests that put to lie Madoff’s original contention that he alone was responsible for this debacle. The FBI will continue to ensure that everyone criminally culpable in the Madoff fraud is brought to justice.”

IRS Special Agent-in-Charge Patricia J. Haynes stated: “The public relies on people who oversee the accounting function of a firm. They are expected to be trustworthy, dependable, and reliable to help make sense out of complicated financial information so the public can make sound fiscal decisions. Compliance of the tax laws and filing accurate tax returns are not only symbolic of the trust the public has come to rely on, but it’s the law. IRS Special Agents will continue to devote resources to investigate allegations of breaches of trust and violations of the tax law.”

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Marc Litt, Lisa A. Baroni and Barbara A. Ward are in charge of the prosecution.

The charges and allegations contained in the complaint are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Monday, February 22nd, 2010

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan have asked a judge to permit the government to intervene in a civil suit involving allegations of corporate espionage, and to put a halt to discovery proceedings for six months, according to

Preet Bharara, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, filed the motion last Friday. The motion says that such a step is necessary “in order to protect the substantial public interests at stake in a substantially related, overlapping criminal investigation” of one of the parties to the civil suit.

The suit was brought by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide against Hilton Hotels Corp. and two Hilton executives who formerly worked for Starwood. Starwood alleges that the two executives stole massive amounts of electronic files after being recruited to Hilton in May and June 2008.

The government says that the facts and circumstances that underlie the  civil suit form the basis for its criminal investigation of Hilton Hotels and the two executives — Ross Klein and Amar Lalvani.

According to the federal government’s filing, the defendants have agreed to the request for a six-month stay in discovery, but that the plaintiff — Starwood Hotels — has not.

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

The Washington Post Thursday spotlighted the federal prosecutor’s office in Manhattan, which it says is “ratcheting up an aggressive strategy to pursue terrorists, drug traffickers and corrupt public officials who operate on foreign soil.”

The focus on fighting crime abroad hasn’t won universal praise, The Post reports, citing criticism that federal law enforcement resources should first be utilized domestically.

But, the Post reports, “advocates say that using the long arm of American law to apprehend international figures whose crimes involve the United States might be the only way to attack an increasingly sophisticated global criminal threat.”

According to the newspaper, “since taking office last year, Preet Bharara, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, has launched or re-emphasized criminal cases against a young Somali pirate accused of hijacking the ship Maersk Alabama in the Indian Ocean; three African men charged with conspiracy to commit narco-terrorism in support of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb; and a Guantanamo Bay detainee who had been charged in the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in East Africa, which killed 224 people.”

In an interview, Bharara told the Post: “The world is becoming more interdependent and more global and so is crime.” He continued, “In order to stay one step ahead of the criminals, you need to figure out a way to be as sophisticated as they are. . . . You have to go where the evidence is, where the crimes are plotted and where the money is being hidden.”

In the past three years alone, federal prosecutors from New York’s Southern District have traveled to more than 40 countries, including Afghanistan, Egypt, Poland and Venezuela, a spokeswoman said.

Just this week, Bharara’s office unsealed an indictment charging former Guatemalan President Alfonso Portillo with money laundering.The fugitive former president of Guatemala was charged with using U.S. bank accounts to launder millions of dollars skimmed from public funds.

Portillo, who was president from 2000 to 2004, converted the office “into his personal ATM” and “abused the trust of his people,” Bharara said.

The tactic is not new: The New York office prosecuted defendants who detonated a truck bomb in 1993 in the garage of the World Trade Center, and the office later secured a conviction in another landmark terrorism case against Omar Abdel Rahman, also known as the blind sheikh, according to The Post.

According to The Post, “within the U.S. legal community, some academics and former prosecutors ask about the wisdom of targeting international figures while traditional American law enforcement missions suffer from a lack of funding.”

The newspaper quotes Kirby Behre, a former prosecutor in the District and a partner in the Paul Hastings law firm, who argued that “taxpayers should question whether it is a wise use of U.S. resources to prosecute the former president of Guatemala, who left office six years ago, for embezzlement that has nothing to do with the United States.”

Monday, January 18th, 2010

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara in the Southern District of New York will combine his office’s international narcotics and terrorism units, The New York Times reported yesterday.

Preet Bharara (DOJ)

Manhattan’s top federal prosecutor told The Times that he believes that members of radical Islamic organizations are venturing into drug trafficking to fund their operations. Western intelligence and law enforcement officials say al Qaeda, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and Hezbollah are among the extremists groups that have a relationship with drug traffickers, according to the newspaper.

Bharara noted that last month the Drug Enforcement Administration arrested three Africans on terrorism and drug trafficking charges brought by his office, according to The Times. The three men allegedly have ties to al Qaeda, the newspaper said.

“It would be sort of law enforcement and national security malpractice not to also be going at it this way,” Bharara told The Times.

The new Terrorism and International Narcotics unit will include 21 prosecutors and three managers from the old terrorism and national security and international narcotics trafficking units, according to the newspaper. Michael Farbiarz, who served as a deputy in the terrorism unit, and Anjan Sahni, who was the chief of international narcotics, will lead the new unit, The Times said. Jocelyn Strauber, who served under Sahni, will be their deputy, according to the newspaper.

The Southern District will now have double the number of prosecutors working on terrorism cases as it heads into the trial of 9/11 “mastermind” Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, known in law enforcement circles as KSM, and four other suspected terrorists.

We reported last week that Southern District of New York Assistant U.S. Attorney David Raskin is expected to head the Justice Department team that will prosecute the terrorism suspects. Raskin previously led the office’s terrorism unit.

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Carmen Ortiz (Adelphi University)

Attorney General Eric Holder will attend a ceremonial swearing-in Monday for Massachusetts U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz, a spokesperson for Ortiz’s office told Main Justice.

Ortiz was officially sworn in on Nov. 9, a few days after the Senate confirmed her. But U.S. Attorneys often have a later ceremonial investiture with local, state and federal leaders in attendance.

The Attorney General has attended six U.S. Attorney investitures so far. He was at the swearing-in ceremonies for Paul Fishman in New Jersey, Timothy Heaphy in the Western District of Virginia, Neil MacBride in the Eastern District of Virginia, Preet Bharara in the Southern District of New York, B. Todd Jones in Minnesota and  Joyce Vance in the Northern District of Alabama.

Read our previous article here about the warm glow U.S. Attorneys get when the Attorney General shows up at their swearing-in ceremonies.