3P THURS: AG Eric Holder to Join Maxine Waters Forum on Mandatory Minimums

3P THURS: AG Eric Holder to Join Maxine Waters Forum on Mandatory Minimums

Attorney General Holder to Join Rep. Maxine Waters for Criminal Justice Issue Forum on Mandatory Minimum Sentences

Rep. Waters’ office: On Thursday, Sept. 19, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) will serve as honorary host for a special Criminal Justice Issues Forum during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 2013 Annual Legislative Conference. Rep. Waters will join government officials and criminal justice reform advocates in a panel discussion on how state and federal policymakers can rethink mandatory minimum sentences and the failed war on drugs. Attorney waters-12General Eric Holder will give opening remarks at the forum. In light of his recent announcement that federal prosecutors will no longer pursue mandatory minimum prison sentences in cases involving low-level, non-violent drug offenders with no ties to major cartels, the panelists will discuss why Congress still needs to act to remove mandatory minimums from the federal code. The panel will also examine the extent current bank money laundering policies have failed to prevent the illegal laundering of millions in drug money through U.S. banks. The forum will take place at the Washington Convention Center.

 WHO:            Rep. Maxine Waters, Ranking Member, House Financial Services Committee

Attorney General Eric Holder, U.S. Department of Justice

                        Invited Panelists:

·         Raymond Baker, President, Global Financial Integrity

·         John Cassara, Anti-Money Laundering Consultant

·         Nkechi Taifa, Senior Policy Analyst, Open Society Institute

·         Molly Gill, Government Affairs Counsel, Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM)

·         Kemba Smith – Founder, Kemba Smith Foundation

·         Charles Ogletree – Professor, Harvard University School of Law


WHAT:          Criminal Justice Issues Forum, Mandatory Minimums: Rethinking Failed

Sentencing Policies and Targeting Money Laundering and Major Drug



WHEN:          Thursday, September 19, 2013

3:00 – 5:00 p.m. ET

WHERE:       Washington Convention Center

                        Room 146B

                        801 Mt. Vernon Place NW

                        Washington, DC


Coverage Details:

All media must be credentialed by registering online at All camera equipment must be in position in Room 146B before the security sweep begins on Sept. 20. No media equipment will be allowed in the room after the security sweep. The time for the sweep and set-up will follow in a later advisory. Please contact Latoya Veal at or 301-330-3447, or Muriel Cooper at or 202-297-3102 if you have additional questions.



Rep. Waters has worked over the last 20 years to raise awareness and traveled across the country to educate communities about cocaine sentencing disparities and mandatory minimums. She has also consistently introduced legislation in Congress that would reverse the effects of mandatory minimum prison sentences, including the Major Drug Traffickers Prosecution Act of 2013


1.      Rep. Waters’ comments during a recent Financial Services Committee hearing where she discusses the war on drugs and money laundering:


2.      Rep. Waters’ statement on DOJ New Policies on Mandatory Minimum Sentencing