U.S. Justice Department | KERA News

U.S. Justice Department

Updated at 9:10 p.m. ET Tuesday

The Justice Department is proposing to begin collecting DNA samples from hundreds of thousands of immigrants crossing the border, creating an enormous database of asylum-seekers and other migrants that federal officials say will be used to help authorities fight crime.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Federal prosecutors on Wednesday charged 58 people across Texas with health care fraud costing at least $66 million, including “pill mill” schemes involving opioids. Doctors and medical professionals are among those facing charges.

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Federal prosecutors say 58 people across Texas have been charged with assorted health care fraud that's been blamed for $66 million in losses and unlawful distribution of opioids.

Members of the federal immigration judges union are demanding the U.S. Justice Department provide judges with enhanced security and an apology after a white nationalist blog post was included in their weekly news briefing.  

Associated Press

The Justice Department said Thursday that it will carry out executions of federal death row inmates for the first time since 2003.

Five inmates who have been sentenced to death are scheduled to be executed starting in December.

Updated at 4:11 p.m. ET

More than 3,100 people will leave Bureau of Prisons custody starting Friday, part of what Justice Department officials call "a truly monumental effort" to comply with the First Step Act, a criminal justice law passed by Congress last year.

Most of the offenders being freed have been convicted of drug-related crimes and have been living in halfway houses across the United States in preparation for their release, acting BOP chief Hugh Hurwitz told reporters at a news conference in Washington.

Associated Press

The Justice Department said Friday it will press its search for legal grounds to force the inclusion of a citizenship question on the 2020 Census, hours after President Donald Trump said he is "very seriously" considering an executive order to get the question on the form.

Updated at 5:32 p.m. ET

Attorney General William Barr swore his oath of office on Thursday following his confirmation by the Senate earlier in the afternoon.

Senators voted 54-45 to confirm Barr to resume the post he first occupied in the administration of President George H.W. Bush.

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts then administered Barr's oath in a ceremony at the White House.

A former substitute teacher from Texas has been indicted on federal charges alleging he tried to provide material support to the Islamic State, the Justice Department said Friday.

Warren Christopher Clark, 34, appeared in court in Houston on Friday and was ordered held without bail.

Updated at 5:11 p.m. ET

Roger Stone, the longtime Republican political operator and confidant of President Trump, was arrested on Friday after being indicted on seven counts including obstruction, witness tampering and making false statements in connection with the Russian attack on the 2016 election.

Stone appeared at the federal courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. He did not enter a plea. He was released on $250,000 bond and with travel restrictions that confine him to South Florida, New York City and the Washington, D.C., area.

Todd Wiseman

 

Robin Jerstad for The Texas Tribune

The U.S. Department of Justice announced plans on Monday to send election monitors from its Civil Rights Division to three Texas counties — Harris, Tarrant and Waller — for Tuesday's election.

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The Justice Department in June announced charges against more than 600 people responsible for more than $2 billion in health care fraud losses over a 12-month period.

That stems in part from 10 strike forces across the country created to investigate Medicare fraud. The Dallas unit began in 2011.

Updated at 5:37 p.m. ET

Attorney General Jeff Sessions answered needling by President Trump on Thursday with a vow that as long as he runs the Justice Department, it won't be swayed by politics.

Sessions' statement was a rare broadside in response to TV and Twitter criticism by Trump of the department, which he and supporters accuse of perpetuating a "witch hunt" in the Russia investigation and going soft on Democrats.

The Department of Justice gave a San Antonio housing group legal ammunition Friday afternoon in their discrimination lawsuit against Facebook.

Updated at 5:39 p.m. ET

The U.S. Justice Department filed notice Thursday that it would seek to overturn a judge's earlier ruling that enabled telecom giant AT&T to take over the media conglomerate Time Warner, which owned HBO, CNN and Warner Bros. studios, among other properties.

Updated at 1:31 p.m. ET

Scott Schools, a top aide to the deputy attorney general, is planning to leave the Justice Department at the end of the week, according to two people familiar with his decision.

The job title for Schools — associate deputy attorney general — belied his importance as a strategic counselor and repository of institutional memory and ethics at the DOJ. Schools has played a critical, if behind-the-scenes, role in some of the most important and sensitive issues in the building.

Updated 4:20 p.m. ET, May 18

The acting head of the Justice Department's civil rights division, John Gore, dodged questions from lawmakers Friday about why the department requested a controversial citizenship question to be added to 2020 census forms.

Updated at 9:15 p.m. ET

Congressional Republicans say they still support special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian election interference even as the president continued his offensive Sunday against the investigation, as well as a recently fired high-ranking FBI official, Andrew McCabe.

Trump sent a flurry of tweets Sunday morning, in which he painted the Mueller-led special counsel probe as a politically biased witch hunt.

Updated at 12:30 a.m. ET Saturday

Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired outgoing FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe on Friday even though he was on the doorstep of retiring and receiving his pension after two decades of service to the bureau.

President Trump responded on Twitter just after midnight Saturday, calling McCabe's firing "a great day for the hard working men and women of the FBI - A great day for Democracy."

One year ago this week, Jeff Sessions stood beaming in the Oval Office as he awaited his swearing-in as the 84th attorney general of the United States.

On that day last February, President Trump signed executive orders on violent crime and gangs, pledging that a "new era of justice begins." And, in the year that followed, Sessions has managed to transform the Justice Department, particularly in the areas of civil rights, immigration and drugs.

As the prospect of a long-term immigration deal for young people who were brought to the country illegally as children dwindles, the Justice Department is appealing a court ruling that blocked the Trump administration from ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

The department says it will take "the rare step" later this week of filing a petition asking the Supreme Court to intervene.

A federal judge in Chicago has ruled that the Trump administration may not withhold public-safety grants to so-called sanctuary cities. The decision issued Friday is a setback to the administration's efforts to force local jurisdictions to help federal authorities crack down on illegal immigration.

From Texas Standard:

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Friday that the Department of Justice would be cracking down on what he calls the "culture of leaking" that has besieged the Trump administration.

 


Chicago's Mayor Rahm Emanuel is pushing back against the federal government.

On Monday, the city is filing suit against the Department of Justice, which announced it would withhold millions of dollars in police grant money from so-called sanctuary cities.

Emanuel is suing because he says new rules for a federal crime-fighting grant go against the Constitution and the city's values.

"Chicago will not let our police officers become political pawns in a debate," Emanuel said.

Austin Price / The Texas Tribune

For about a year starting in June 2016, the practice of affirmative action in Texas university admissions seemed secure. 

Updated 2 p.m.

A day late, the Justice Department complied this morning with a federal court order and released part of a security clearance form dealing with Attorney General Jeff Sessions' contacts with foreign governments.

On June 12, a judge had ordered the agency to provide the information within 30 days, a deadline that passed on Wednesday.

In a filing Thursday morning with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the Justice Department released that part of Sessions' form which poses the question:

The federal government has officially thrown its support behind Texas' so-called sanctuary cities ban.

The U.S. Department of Justice filed a statement of interest in federal court Friday in the case brought by several cities, including Austin, that seeks to block enforcement of Senate Bill 4.

Updated at 7:15 p.m. ET.

The U.S. Justice Department has escalated its approach to so-called sanctuary cities, writing at least eight jurisdictions Friday to put them on notice they could be failing to cooperate with immigration authorities.

Alan Hanson, the acting assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's grant-making arm, warned the cities that they're required to submit proof that they comply with federal immigration law.

Feds Sue To Block Acquisition Of Dallas Radioactive Waste Company

Nov 19, 2016
David Bowser for The Texas Tribune

The U.S. Justice Department is suing to block a Salt Lake City-based company's acquisition of Waste Control Specialists, the Dallas-based company that wants to expand the nuclear waste dump it operates in West Texas.

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