- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 22, 2003

President Bush yesterday announced his intention to nominate Karen P. Tandy, head of the Justice Department's Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force, as the new chief of the Drug Enforcement Administration.
If confirmed by the Senate, she would be the first woman ever to head the anti-drug agency.
A veteran prosecutor, she would replace acting administrator John B. Brown III, a longtime drug agent who was named in January to succeed former Rep. Asa Hutchinson. The Arkansas Republican had left the agency to become undersecretary for border and transportation security at the new Department of Homeland Security.
In his announcement, Mr. Bush noted that Mrs. Tandy, a deputy associate attorney general, had previously served as both chief of litigation in the Justice Department's asset-forfeiture office and as deputy chief for narcotics and dangerous drugs.
The president said she also was an assistant U.S. attorney in Virginia and Washington state, where she handled the prosecution of violent crime, complex drug cases, money laundering and forfeiture cases.
Mrs. Tandy earned her bachelor's degree and her law degree from Texas Tech University.
As head of the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force, she oversees a federal drug-enforcement program that focuses attention and resources on the disruption and dismantling of major drug-trafficking organizations.
The task force provides a framework for law enforcement agencies to work together to target well-established and complex organizations that direct, finance or engage in illegal drug trafficking and related crimes, including money laundering and tax violations, public corruption, illegal immigration, weapons violations and violent crimes.
The program, in existence since 1982, uses the resources and expertise of its 11 member federal agencies, along with support from state and local law enforcement. It has seen the successful prosecution and conviction of 44,000 members of criminal organizations and has seized cash and property assets totaling $3 billion.
And Mrs. Tandy is no stranger to the DEA. Last year, the Detroit field division presented her with a crystal plaque recognizing her "significant contributions and support." She was actively involved in a DEA investigation that targeted pseudoephedrine-trafficking organizations in Michigan and Ohio, which smuggled hundreds of tons of the drug into the United States from Canada.
Her assistance led to the conception of Operation VORTEX, a new initiative designed to disrupt pseudoephedrine trafficking from Detroit to the western United States.

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