Ronald Machen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Ronald C. Machen
Ronald Machen US Attorney.jpg
United States Attorney for the District of Columbia
Assumed office
February 2010
Appointed by Barack Obama
Preceded by Kenneth L. Wainstein
Personal details
Alma mater Stanford University (B.A.)
Harvard Law School (J.D.)

Ronald C. Machen, Jr. is the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia.

Early life and education[edit]

Machen grew up in Detroit, Michigan.[1] He attended Stanford University, where he was a walk-on wide receiver for the Stanford Cardinal football team.[2] Machen graduated from Stanford in 1991 with bachelor degrees in economics and political science.[2] He earned his Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School in 1994.[3] After graduating from Harvard, Machen served as a law clerk to the Honorable Damon J. Keith, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.[4]


On December 23, 2009, President Barack Obama nominated Machen to serve as the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia.[3] He was confirmed by the United States Senate on February 11, 2010.[5]

Machen has prosecuted numerous corruption cases involving Jesse Jackson Jr., and the administration of D.C. mayor Vincent C. Gray.[6]

On September 12, 2014 Machen set up the first federal unit in the nation to identify and investigate cases that ended in wrongful convictions.The unit will review cases in which defendants convicted of violent felonies can offer new evidence, such as DNA testing, that may establish innocence. A number of prosecutors’ offices have established similar units in recent years, including the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office and the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office in Texas.[7]

Assigned to Lois Lerner Contempt Case of the IRS Scandal[edit]

On May 8, 2014, Machen was assigned to investigate embattled director of the tax-exempt organizations division of the Internal Revenue Service, Lois Lerner, for Contempt of Congress with regard to her testimony involving the IRS Scandal by President Obama.[8]

Crackdown on leaks[edit]

Machen participated in the Espionage Act case against Dr. Stephen Jin-Woo Kim after Kim told a reporter that North Korea would probably test its nuclear program. The case was controversial because it was one of a string of unprecedented uses of the Espionage Act against officials for speaking with journalists .[9]

2012 Benghazi[edit]

Shortly after the 2012 attack on the American embassy in Benghazi, Libya, and the death of the American ambassador, the U.S. Attorney of Washington, D.C. was assigned the case. Ahmad Khattala has been arrested and awaits trial. Questions have been raised why this case is being handled in this office, and not others with more experience in this type of case.[10]


Official website:

  1. ^ Alexander, Keith L. (April 19, 2010). "D.C.'s U.S. attorney: One foot in court, one in the streets". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 20, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Kiefer, David (September 23, 2009). "FOOTBALL: Former Cardinal could be top prosecutor". Retrieved February 20, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b The White House: Office of the Press Secretary (December 24, 2009). "President Obama Nominates Seven U.S. Attorneys". Retrieved February 20, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Machen nominated to serve as U.S. Attorney for D.C.". Harvard Law School. 
  5. ^ Ingram, David (February 12, 2010). "Senate Confirms U.S. Attorney for D.C.". The Blog of Legal Times. Retrieved February 20, 2011. 
  6. ^ DeBonis, Mike; Stewart, Nikita (July 12, 2012). "D.C. Politics". The Washington Post. 
  7. ^ Ramstack, Tom. "Washington U.S. attorney sets up first unit to ID wrongful convictions". Reuters. Retrieved 12 September 2014. 
  8. ^ Report (May 8, 2012). "US Attorney To Oversee Lerner Contempt Case Appointed By Obama". CBS DC. 
  9. ^ Ex-Contractor at State Dept. Pleads Guilty in Leak Case, New York Times, CHARLIE SAVAGE, FEB. 7, 2014. See also Statement of Offense, US District Court, DC, 2014 February (court document), via the Federation of American Scientists website
  10. ^ Holder decision questioned