Transcript: Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s remarks on transnational gangs & border security – Part 2

Part 2 of 2. Partial transcript of Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s remarks on combatting transnational gangs on April 18, 2017:

Every neighborhood is entitled to safety in their communities.
We recognize this will not be easy.  But the organizations here worked together to take down the Mafia and the Colombian cartels, and we can do it again.  

We will require a commitment from not only all federal, state and local law enforcement, but from everyday Americans who refuse to allow the current gang violence to be the status quo. 
Let me add: Sanctuary cities dangerously undermine this process.  Harboring criminal aliens only helps violent gangs like MS13.  

Sanctuary Cities are aiding these cartels to refill their ranks and putting innocent life – including the lives of countless law-abiding immigrants – in danger.
Today is just the beginning.  There will be much more in the coming weeks and months as we seek to eradicate these transnational criminal organizations.

Under this administration and this Department of Justice, there will be no safe quarter for gangs and those who support them.   
Thank you again for being here, all of you. I’m happy to take a couple questions from the press as we then will get started with the business of our meeting today.

Question: [Inaudible]

Attorney General Jeff Sessions:
We really need to work hard at that and we’ll ask Congress to help with that. A number of nominees are going over now.

It does take some months and has traditionally.

Our offices now, U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, are headed by career people for the most part. They’ve been there in the offices, and they respond pretty well, I think, to presidential leadership. I find real support for our initiatives out there, and I would expect every United States Attorney to support the basic agenda that we have here.

And I would say, as we’ve discussed it here in the Department of Justice, I know how important a good United States Attorney is. We need the best kind of people, and we’re going to challenge them to perform and lead in their offices like they’ve never done before.

Question: [Inaudible]

Attorney General Jeff Sessions:
Well, we do have quite a bit of marijuana being imported by the cartels from Mexico. This is definitely a cartel sponsored event.

And as our acting deputy attorney general, Dana Boente, has told us, there has been a lot of violence around the marijuana distribution networks even here in Virginia, Maryland, and this area. So it is a financial moneymaker for them.

I returned from the border last week, and they told me that quite a number of people they arrest are hauling marijuana across the border as illegal entrants – themselves are illegally coming across the border.

So it is a part of – remains a significant international criminal organization – the marijuana network.

Question: [Inaudible]

Attorney General Jeff Sessions:
I don’t believe aggressive prosecution of police illegality does chill good policing. I think overwhelmingly most police officers know the rules and can make themselves fit within those rules and conduct themselves properly.

So if someone is over the line and committed a violent crime that is prosecutable under federal law, it’s usually easier to prosecute in state court for these crimes than in federal, but we can absolutely use our investigative and prosecutorial powers to prosecute cases that are worthy of prosecution.


Thank you all.


Learn More:

Transcript: Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s remarks on transnational gangs & border security – Part 1

Transcript: Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s remarks on transnational gangs & border security – Part 2 Department of Justice Fact Sheet on MS-13 (PDF)

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