Laura E. Duffy, former United States Attorney for the Southern District of California, is the newest member of NAFUSA. She served as United States Attorney for nearly seven years under President Obama, resigning January 5, 2017 after being appointed to the California Superior Court by Governor Edmund G. Brown. Judge Duffy is thrilled to have the opportunity to continue her public service in the Southern District of California as a jurist.
Under Judge Duffy’s leadership as United States Attorney from 2010-2017, the Southern District of California consistently maintained the fourth- highest felony filings in the nation. During her tenure, Judge Duffy oversaw dozens of complex investigations and prosecutions, including the massive corruption case against more than two dozen of the U.S. Navy’s highest-ranking officials – including two admirals – and the foreign defense contractor who bribed them. Duffy also successfully managed multiple high-profile RICO investigations and prosecutions of cartel leaders and gang-based sex-traffickers — all while ensuring the prosecution of thousands of immigration cases.
Judge Duffy’s national responsibilities included serving as a member of the AGAC and on several AGAC subcommittees and working groups. During 2015-2016, Duffy served as both co-chair of the Civil Rights Subcommittee and chair of the Security Issues Working Group.
Judge Duffy began her legal career with the United States Department of Justice in 1993. From 1993 to 1997, she was assigned at Justice Department Headquarters in Washington, D.C., first to the Criminal Division Money Laundering Section and later to the Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Section. In 1997, Judge Duffy became an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of California. Prior to being sworn in as U.S. Attorney, she was a Deputy Chief in the General Crimes Section of the office. From 1997-2008, Judge Duffy worked in the Narcotics Enforcement Section as an Assistant United States Attorney where she prosecuted high-profile OCDETF and HIDTA cases targeting large-scale drug trafficking and money laundering organizations operating internationally and in multi-jurisdictions throughout the United States.
Judge Duffy received her undergraduate degree in 1988 from Iowa State University and her law degree in 1993 from the Creighton University School of Law.