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What does the New York State Attorney General's office do?

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Quick Answer

The New York State Attorney General’s office, which calls itself the “People’s Lawyer” on its website, operates bureaus representing the state of New York in criminal prosecutions, social justice regulation and monitoring, representing the state in legal matters, and enforcing economic justice, among other activities, as of December 2015. The New York State Attorney General operates 15 regional offices.

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Full Answer

The New York State Attorney General’s office employs more than 650 lawyers and more than 1,700 employees, including investigators, legal assistants, accountants and support staff. The Criminal Justice Division, which is in charge of criminal enforcement, includes a financial crimes unit, taxpayer protection bureau, organized crime task force, and Medicaid fraud control unit.

The Social Justice Division monitors and investigates issues relating to charities operating in New York State, labor issues, civil rights, tobacco compliance and health care. The Attorney General staff in the Economic Justice Division is active in antitrust cases, Internet crime, consumer frauds, investor protection and real estate finance matters.

The Investigations Division employs 225 law enforcement officers and 40 civil investigators working throughout New York state. Some of these officers have specialized training in languages, computer forensics, forensic accounting and surveillance. The civil investigators work primarily to assist in civil lawsuits brought against the state.

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