Created in 1976, the Public Integrity Section consolidates into one unit the U.S. Department of Justice's oversight responsibilities for prosecuting criminal abuses of the public trust by elected and appointed government officials. Besides prosecuting selected cases involving federal, state, or local officials, the section also gives advice and assistance to prosecutors and agents in the field in handling public corruption cases. The section's Election Crimes Branch, created in 1980, supervises the U.S. Department of Justice's nationwide response to voter fraud, campaign financing offenses, and other election crimes.
The Ethics in Government Act of 1978 requires the Attorney General to report to the United States Congress annually on the operations and activities of the Public Integrity Section. Annual reports to Congress since 1982 are available on the section's website.