U.S. Department of Justice

U.S. Justice Department officials plan to phase out their use of private prisons to house federal inmates, reasoning that the contract facilities offer few benefits for public safety or taxpayers.

In making the decision, Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates cited new findings by the Justice Department's inspector general, who concluded earlier this month that a pool of 14 privately contracted prisons reported more incidents of inmate contraband, higher rates of assaults and more uses of force than facilities run by the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

The Baltimore Police Department has disproportionately targeted African-Americans for stops and arrests, a Justice Department investigation has found. After the department took a "zero tolerance" approach to policing in the early 2000s, the report finds, the police department began engaging in a pattern and practice of discriminatory policing.

The Justice Department is suing to block two proposed mergers between major health insurance companies, saying the deals violate antitrust laws and would lead to higher health care costs for Americans.

U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch explained the decision at a press conference:

The U.S. Department of Justice has filed civil complaints seeking to recover a billion dollars' worth of art, real estate and other assets bought with money allegedly stolen from a Malaysian sovereign wealth fund.

The Justice Department's No. 3 official, Stuart Delery, is resigning to explore options in the private sector, leaving as the highest-ranking openly gay leader in the agency's history.

The Department of Justice announced Wednesday that it has reached an agreement with Newark, N.J., on changes to the city's police department.

NPR's Carrie Johnson tells our Newscast unit that this comes after "civil rights investigators had uncovered a pattern of unconstitutional stops and property thefts." She adds:

"The Justice Department team studied thousands of unjustified stops and searches by the Newark police that had a disparate impact on minorities.

The Justice Department slapped the city of Ferguson, Mo., with a civil rights lawsuit this week after the City Council voted to change a proposed settlement agreement to reform the police and courts.

When Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the suit on Wednesday, she said Ferguson police disproportionately targeted black people for traffic stops, use of force and jail sentences.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Cybercriminals, terrorists, white collar bankers - U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan has taken on all of them in her five years on the job in Western Washington. Now, she says she’s stepping down at the end of the month after holding the post for five years.

She was among the first six U.S. attorneys nominated by President Barack Obama in May 2009 and was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in September 2009.

Rick Bowmer / AP Photo

A federal judge in Portland on Tuesday ordered the U.S. Department of Justice and the FBI to come up with new rules for the government's no-fly list. The court found travelers labeled as potential terrorists had been deprived of their constitutional rights to due process.

Molly Riley / Associated Press

The Justice Department secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in what the news cooperative's top executive called a "massive and unprecedented intrusion" into how news organizations gather the news.

The records obtained by the Justice Department listed incoming and outgoing calls, and the duration of each call, for the work and personal phone numbers of individual reporters, general AP office numbers in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn., and the main number for AP reporters in the House of Representatives press gallery, according to attorneys for the AP.

Washington's top officials met with U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in Washington D.C. today and tried to reassure the Obama administration that Washington's new marijuana law won't result in distribution of pot outside the state.

How do you make sure there is genuine change within the Seattle Police Department? That’s what some Seattle City Council members are asking as the city gets set to implement a police reform plan mandated by an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice.

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