United States Department of Justice
The United States Department of Justice Antitrust Division is responsible for enforcing the antitrust laws of the United States. It shares jurisdiction over civil antitrust cases with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and often works jointly with the FTC to provide regulatory guidance to businesses. However, the Antitrust Division also has the power to file criminal cases against willful violators of the antitrust laws. The Antitrust Division also works with competition regulators in other countries.
The head of the Antitrust Division is an Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust (AAG-AT) appointed by the President of the United States. The current Acting Assistant Attorney General is Brent C. Synder.
The Antitrust Division is overseen by an Assistant Attorney General. The Assistant Attorney General is assisted by six Deputy Assistant Attorneys General (DAAG) who each oversee a different branch of the Division. One of the DAAGs holds the position of "Principal Deputy," that is "first among equals," and "will typically assume the powers of the Assistant Attorney General in the Assistant Attorney General’s absence."
Office of the Assistant Attorney General
Criminal Sections and Offices
Closing of Field Offices
The closure of four of the Antitrust Division's criminal antitrust offices in January 2013 generated significant controversy within the Division and among members of Congress. The Attorney General posited that the closure of these offices will save money and not negatively affect criminal enforcement. A significant number of career prosecutors have voiced contrary opinions, noting that the elimination of half of the Division's criminal enforcement offices will increase travel expenses and diminish the likelihood of uncovering local or regional conspiracies.