Assistant Attorney General, Civil Division, Tony West wil be the keynote speaker at the May 20 Equal Justice Council Awards & Recognition Breakfast at Camden Yards. The Equal Justice Council is the private-bar fundraising arm of Maryland Legal Aid.
West was nominated by President Barack Obama to be the Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Civil Division on January 22, 2009. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on April 20, 2009. As the largest litigating division in the Department of Justice, the Civil Division represents the United States, its departments and agencies, Congress, Cabinet officers, and other federal employees in lawsuits across the country. Some examples include: defending the recent health care reform legislation against recent challenges; litigating habeas corpus petitionsbrought by detainees at Guantanamo Bay; and providing support and guidance to agencies responding to the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. West has focused on these traditional areas, as well as bolstering the Civil Division’s civil enforcement efforts, such as bringing civil actions to recover taxpayer money lost to fraud and abuse. Since April 2009, the Civil Division has recovered over $4 billion through affirmative civil enforcement.
In addition, West has emphasized the Civil Division’s responsibility to enforce thenation’s consumer protection laws. Since April 2009, the Office of Consumer Litigation has
convicted 33 defendants and imposed criminal penalties exceeding $1.3 billion for illegal activities in connection with defrauding consumers. During this same time period, 23
defendants were sentenced to some form of incarceration, receiving a total of over 85 years. West’s most recent appointment marks his return to the Department of Justice. From
1993 through 1994, he served as a Special Assistant to the Deputy Attorney General under the direction of U.S. Deputy Attorneys General Philip Heymann and Jamie Gorelick, as well as Attorney General Janet Reno. As a Special Assistant, West worked on the development of national crime policy, including the 1994 Omnibus Crime Bill.
From 1994 to 1999, West served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Northern District of California, where he prosecuted child sexual exploitation, fraud, narcotics distribution, interstate theft and high tech crime. As a federal prosecutor, West led the successful investigation, prosecution and appeal of the Orchid Club case, at the time the largest
Internet child pornography production and distribution ring prosecution in history. West later served as a state Special Assistant Attorney General in California, advising
the California Attorney General on matters including identity theft, the Microsoft antitrust litigation, civil rights, and police officer training.
Prior to returning to the Justice Department, West was a litigation partner at Morrison & Foerster in San Francisco. West graduated with honors from Harvard College, where he served as publisher of the Harvard Political Review, and received his law degree from Stanford Law School, where he was elected president of the Stanford Law Review.