United States Department of Justice National Security Division

The United States Department of Justice National Security Division (NSD) handles national security functions of the department. Created by the 2005 USA PATRIOT Act reauthorization, the division consolidated all of the department's national security and intelligence functions into a single division. The division is headed by the Assistant Attorney General for National Security.

United States Department of Justice
National Security Division
DOJ National Security Division logo.svg
Seal of the United States Department of Justice National Security Division
Division overview
FormedMarch 9, 2005 (2005-03-09)
JurisdictionUnited States government agency
HeadquartersRobert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building
950 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C., United States
Division executive
Parent departmentU.S. Department of Justice
WebsiteOfficial website

HistoryEdit

The National Security Division was created under Section 506 of the 2005 USA PATRIOT Act reauthorization,[1] which was signed into law by President George W. Bush on March 9, 2006.[2]

It consolidated the department's national security efforts within one unit, bringing together attorneys from the Counterterrorism Section and Counterespionage Section of the Criminal Division and from the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review (OIPR), with their specialized expertise in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and other intelligence matters. This fulfilled a recommendation of the Iraq Intelligence Commission (Commission on the Intelligence Capabilities of the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction).[3]

In 2010, its budget was $88 million.[4]

LeadershipEdit

The head of the National Security Division is an Assistant Attorney General for National Security (AAG-NS) appointed by the President of the United States. John Demers, the AAG-NS appointed under President Donald Trump, continued to serve under the incoming President Joe Biden administration, but he left the role in June 2021 in the wake of news reports that the Justice officials had seized the phone records of Congressional members and staff.[5] The acting AAG-NS, until a replacement is confirmed, is acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Mark Lesko.[6]

 
John Demers

OrganizationEdit

The National Security Division is overseen by the Assistant Attorney General whom with the Principle Deputy Assistant Attorney General oversee the Executive Office - The office that adminsters the entire division. In assistance are four deputy assistant attorneys general, all career attorneys, whom oversee each section.

  • Counterintelligence and Export Control Section - Responsible for supervising investigations and prosecutions relating to espionage, or trafficking of national security information and military hardware.
  • Counterterrorism Section - Responsible for supporting Law Enforcement efforts, policy and strategy in combatting international and domestic terrorism.
  • Foreign Investment and Review Section - Responsible for investigating and mitigating foreign investment in critical U.S. infrastructure and commerce.
  • Office of Law and Policy - Responsible for developing national security policies and strategies within the Justice Department.
  • Office of Intelligence - Responsible for legal and regulatory oversight of the U.S. Intelligence Community. The office contains three sections
    • Operations Section - Responsible for pursuing legal authorization of U.S. Intelligence Operations and representing the government in a FISA Court.
    • Oversight Section - Responsible for oversight of the Intelligence Community and ensuring full legal compliance and protection of individual privacy and civil liberties.
    • Litigation Section - Responsible for handling information gathered from FISA-related activities and preparation of the information for litigation.
  • Office of Justice for Victims of Overseas Terrorism - Responsible for working with terrorism victims and their families to pursue and prosecute the culprits.
DoJ National Security Division Organizational Breakdown
Assistant Attorney General
for National Security
Executive OfficePrincipal Deputy Assistant Attorney General
and Chief of Staff
Deputy Assistant Attorney General
for Counter-Espionage
Deputy Assistant Attorney General
for Counter-Terrorism
Deputy Assistant Attorney General
for Intelligence
Deputy Assistant Attorney General
for Law and Policy
Foreign Investment Review SectionCounter-Terrorism SectionOffice of IntelligenceOffice of Law
and Policy
Counterintelligence
and Export Control Section
Office of Justice for Victims
of Overseas Terrorism
Operations Section
Oversight Section
Litigation Section

ControversiesEdit

In December 2019, Michael Horowitz, the Inspector General of the DoJ released a report accusing the Division of lying to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in some of its applications for wiretaps.[7][8] The Presiding Judge of the Court subsequently ordered the Division to "inform the Court in a sworn written submission of what it has done, and plans to do, to ensure that the statement of facts in each FBI application accurately and completely reflects information possessed by the FBI that is material to any issue presented by the application."[9]

List of assistant attorneys generalEdit

Name President
nominating
Sworn in Left office
Kenneth Leonard Wainstein[10] George W. Bush September 28, 2006[11] March 30, 2008
J. Patrick Rowan October 3, 2008[12] January 20, 2009[13]
David S. Kris Barack Obama 2009 2011
Lisa Monaco July 1, 2011[14] March 8, 2013
John P. Carlin April 1, 2014 October 15, 2016[15]

John Demers

Donald Trump February 22, 2018 June 25, 2021[16]
Joe Biden
Mark Lesko (acting) June 25, 2021 Incumbent

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005 Archived 2010-12-07 at the Wayback Machine." Government Printing Office.
  2. ^ "H.R.3199 Major Congressional Actions Archived 2008-11-27 at the Wayback Machine." THOMAS.
  3. ^ "Fact Sheet: USA PATRIOT Act Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005 Archived 2006-09-13 at the Wayback Machine." United States Department of Justice 2 March 2006.
  4. ^ "DEPARTMENT Of JUSTICE" Archived 2011-02-18 at the Wayback Machine, Government Printing Office. Retrieved 7 aug 2011
  5. ^ Sheth, Sonam. "The DOJ's top national security official is resigning amid reports that the department secretly seized House Democrats' records". Business Insider.
  6. ^ "Brooklyn US Attorney Mark Lesko to Replace DOJ National Security Chief John Demers". NBC New York.
  7. ^ Inspector General Michael Horowitz (December 9, 2019). "Review of Four FISA Applications and Other Aspects of the FBI's Crossfire Hurricane Investigation" (PDF). Department of Justice Office of Inspector General. Archived (PDF) from the original on December 11, 2019. Retrieved May 25, 2020.
  8. ^ Jerry Dunleavy (December 9, 2019). "DOJ inspector general finds 17 'significant errors or omissions' in Carter Page FISA applications". Washington Examiner. Archived from the original on May 2, 2020. Retrieved May 25, 2020. These errors and omissions resulted from case agents providing wrong or incomplete information to the National Security Division’s Office of Intelligence and failing to flag important issues for discussion.
  9. ^ Rosemary M. Collyer, Presiding Judge, United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (December 17, 2019). "In Re Accuracy Concerns Regarding FBI Matters Submitted to the FISC" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on March 19, 2020. Retrieved May 25, 2020.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  10. ^ "Presidential Nomination: Kenneth Leonard Wainstein". whitehouse.gov. 24 April 2008. Archived from the original on 24 February 2018. Retrieved 25 May 2020 – via National Archives.
  11. ^ "#06-655: 09-28-06 Kenneth L. Wainstein Sworn in as First Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division". Archived from the original on 2009-05-08. Retrieved 2009-03-12.
  12. ^ "results.gov : Resources For The President's Team". whitehouse.gov. 27 October 2008. Archived from the original on 19 October 2012. Retrieved 25 May 2020 – via National Archives.
  13. ^ "Nomination Press Release - Assistant Attorney General | The White House". whitehouse.gov. Retrieved 2013-11-27 – via National Archives.
  14. ^ "Meet the Assistant Attorney General". justice.gov. Archived from the original on 2013-10-12. Retrieved 2011-09-09.
  15. ^ "Wednesday 10-12-2016 John Carlin, who is about to step down as assistant attorney general for national security, discusses terrorism and cyber security". Archived from the original on 2016-10-24. Retrieved 2016-10-23.
  16. ^ "Top DOJ national security official resigns amid fallout over seizure of Dems' records". NBC News.

External linksEdit