U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag today confirmed she’s tapped San Jose branch chief David Callaway to head up the new Economic Crime and Securities Fraud unit.
Haag earlier this week announced she’s merged several smaller units as part of a reorganization of the criminal division in the San Francisco office.
It’s unclear if it actually means more manpower to combat financial fraud. (An office spokesman earlier this week said he didn’t have exact figures on line prosecutors and staff.) But she said putting white collar and securities fraud together “adds flexibility and resources to how we fight fraud.”
Haag’s remarks came at the start of the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force West Coast summit that her office is hosting today. With U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder sitting at her side, Haag told an audience of federal officials that she’s proud of a number of cases brought in recent years, under her predecessor, involving insider trading, Ponzi schemes and investment scams.
“I would expect more indictments are on the way,” she said.
She noted that current securities fraud unit chief Adam Reeves will remain in that role, now serving as a deputy chief under Callaway. Same thing for Doug Sprague, who most recently headed white collar.
Haag also went out of her way to show some love for the former San Diego U.S. attorney recently tapped to serve as the deputy chief in the fraud section of the DOJ’s criminal division.
In recognizing Chuck La Bella, she called him an “old friend.”
Holder also addressed the crowd before officials went into closed-door sessions to strategize about parallel criminal and civil enforcement efforts.
The AG continued his PR campaign on “Operation Broken Trust,” the results of which the DOJ announced on Monday. Seemingly in response to criticism in the media that the operation failed to result in prosecutions of high-level officials of the biggest companies, Holder said they can “hardly be described as going after small fish.”