Assistant U.S. Attorney | Definition

Doc's CJ Glossary by Adam J. McKee
Course: Introduction

An Assistant U.S. Attorney is a U.S. Government attorney who serves as the prosecutor in federal criminal cases.

An Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) is a government attorney who serves as a prosecutor in federal criminal cases. AUSAs are employed by the United States Department of Justice and are responsible for enforcing federal criminal laws in the United States.

The role of an Assistant United States Attorney is to represent the United States in federal court proceedings. This involves working with law enforcement agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), to investigate and prosecute federal crimes. AUSAs are responsible for evaluating evidence, interviewing witnesses, and presenting cases in court.

Assistant U.S. attorneys are involved in a wide range of criminal cases, including drug offenses, white-collar crimes, terrorism, and public corruption. They also handle cases involving civil rights violations, environmental crimes, and other federal offenses. In addition to prosecuting criminal cases, AUSAs are also responsible for defending the government in civil cases and representing the United States in appeals of criminal convictions.

AUSAs are typically appointed by the United States Attorney, who is the chief federal law enforcement officer for a particular district. Each federal district in the United States has a U.S. Attorney’s Office, which is responsible for prosecuting federal crimes within the district. AUSAs work in these offices and are responsible for prosecuting cases in the district’s federal court.

To become an AUSA, individuals must typically have a law degree and be licensed to practice law in the United States. They must also have experience as a prosecutor or as a litigator in private practice. AUSAs are often selected based on their academic credentials, legal experience, and demonstrated commitment to public service.

AUSAs play an important role in the federal criminal justice system. They work to ensure that federal criminal laws are enforced and that justice is served in federal court proceedings. AUSAs work closely with law enforcement agencies to investigate crimes and build cases against defendants. They also work with victims of crime to ensure that their rights are protected and that they are able to participate in the criminal justice process.

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Last Modified: 04/15/2023


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