The Department of Justice will assign three additional federal prosecutors to western Missouri to combat violent crime and one additional prosecutor to beef up civil enforcement, officials announced Monday.
In addition, Kansas will get two additional federal prosecutors to fight violent crime.
The new assistant U.S. attorney positions are among 311 added to priority areas across the country, according to the announcement by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
"The Department of Justice is going on offense against violent crime, illegal immigration and the opioid crisis — and today we are sending in reinforcements," Sessions said in a release, calling it the largest increase in decades.
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The release said the new positions were being made possible by eliminating wasteful spending, but it was not specific. It gave no hiring timetable.
The three additional federal positions in the Western District of Missouri will be added to each of the Kansas City, Springfield and Jefferson City offices.
"Missouri has been hit hard by methamphetamine trafficking and opioid abuse, along with the violent crime that drug trafficking inevitably brings," U.S. Attorney Tim Garrison said in a statement. "Three new prosecutors, strategically stationed in each of our district offices, will provide additional resources for us to aggressively prosecute these dangerous criminals."
The Eastern District of Missouri will receive four additional assistant U.S. attorney positions assigned to violent crime and one additional position for civil enforcement.
No additional federal prosecutors will be assigned for immigration cases in Missouri or Kansas.