This is a special edition of the Let’s Go Eat Podcast for a couple of reasons. First, it doesn’t take place at a restaurant. Also, there’s no food. You’ll have to imagine culinary delights in your head and look for a drink suggestion elsewhere this week because Bill sat down with Utah Attorney General, Sean Reyes in his office. Mr. Reyes recently received national and international notoriety from his recent trip to South America to break up a child sex trafficking ring (“Vice” even reported on the story). A refreshing story about someone representing the state of Utah when it seems most of the press Utah receives is for our quirkiness or Sundance.
Though few are aware of the severity of the problem, human | child sex trafficking affects tens of thousands of people in America alone, despite the tireless efforts of law enforcement, advocacy groups, government agencies, and the international community.
I am pleased the Washington Examiner considers this issue important and is sharing my opinion with readers, which was influenced by my recent involvement in an undercover sting with Tim Ballard's Operation Underground Railroad that took place in Colombia last October and resulted in the liberation of over 100 young girls—some as young at 11 years old—across three locations in Colombia.
WASHINGTON – Today (January 15, 2015) at the RNC Winter Meeting in San Diego, California, Chairman Reince Priebus and Co-Chairman Sharon Day added four new individuals to the RNC Rising Stars program.
Chairman Priebus and Co-Chairman Day announced the next four Rising Stars and joined them in a panel discussion in San Diego.
· Sean Reyes, Utah Attorney General
· Anitere Flores, Florida State Senator District 37
· Conrad James, New Mexico State Representative District 24
· Hadley Heath Manning, Director of Health Policy at Independent Women’s Forum
“These four individuals are a fantastic addition to our Rising Stars program,” said Chairman Priebus. “I am thrilled to work with Anitere, Conrad, Hadley, and Sean and I look forward to hearing their unique perspectives as they continue to do great things for the Republican Party.”
Last night was a fantastic night for the Republican party in Utah and nationally. It was also a night to relish for my friends, family and loyal supporters who have waited for several years for this moment — I am honored and humbled to be the first ethnic minority elected to statewide office in Utah.
Now, it's time for me to roll-up my sleeves and continue to move the Attorney General's office and my team in the right direction by leading through example and hard work, which I believe is the only way we will continue to restore public trust over the next two years.
My priorities remain the same: (1) protecting citizens, particularly children, from violent crime and drugs; (2) protecting businesses and consumers from white collar frauds and scams; and (3) restoring public trust by focusing the office on ethics and excellent legal work.”
I hope you stay tuned in — there is a lot of good and important news on the horizon. If you have any questions and/or concerns, please feel free to contact me. My door is always open.
Raising money for the poor in India — an incredible privilege to stand along side two musical phenoms and help the less fortunate who ask for so little and need so much.
Sean is a first rate attorney, fine administrator and dedicated Attorney General. As you already know, he is a man of great intellect and unflinching integrity. He is exactly what we need in the top law enforcement official and legal counsel for our great State. I have been around many Attorneys General and firmly believe Sean Reyes is the best I have seen. Rarely are we as voters fortunate enough to have a candidate so qualified and prepared for office. To Read the Complete Letter
Reyes needs time to finish what he’s started
The Daily Herald endorses Sean Reyes to fill out the term of Utah attorney general.
Reyes has shown the leadership required to restore trust in the attorney general’s office, and we encourage voters to allow him to continue to work his plan that began late last year after the resignation of John Swallow.
Our interviews with both Reyes, the incumbent, and challenger Charles Stormont revealed a common theme that will be required of our next attorney general: Utah must be able to trust that the state’s top attorney has the best interest of Utah residents in mind. Read More
Attorney General Sean Reyes Urges Congressional Support of Legislation to Prevent Online Sex Trafficking of Youth
Utah Attorney General Sean D. Reyes today urged members of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee to support legislation that would help prevent children from being trafficked on the Internet. His office’s Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force and SECURE Strike Force are constantly battling the overwhelming crisis.
Human trafficking is the fastest- growing criminal industry in the world, generating approximately $150 billion each year. Shockingly, there are numerous cases nationally of children being used in prostitution as young as 12. The FBI estimates that nearly 300,000 American youth are at risk of becoming victims of commercial sexual exploitation.
“At any given time in our office, we have multiple investigators assigned to cases where children are being exploited and trafficked on the Internet. Although we make many arrests locally, the problem is catastrophically permeating back rooms of the web,” said Attorney General Reyes. “We can no longer fight this fight without an interconnected effort with legislators and law enforcement officials, both nationally and internationally.”
In a letter co-sponsored by the Indiana and Washington attorneys general, and joined by 51 other attorneys general, General Reyes asked members of the Senate Judiciary Committee for their support of the Stop Advertising Victims of Exploitation Act (SAVE) Act (S. 2536), which would provide more oversight of websites that facilitate “adult services,” such as Backpage.com.
To read more, click here.
To read the signed letter, click here.
I love to serve and feel like my team is making a positive difference in many areas. I am the candidate with the most leadership and legal experience and most qualified for this position. Over the last nine months, we have built a lot of productive momentum in the Utah Attorney General’s Office (“AGO”) and I am running for reelection to ensure we continue moving in the right direction. The morale of the office improves each day. Public trust has been restored because of our emphasis on integrity and legal excellence and not political agendas and special interests. I want to continue to lead out as Utah’s top prosecutor and law enforcement officer to maintain the progress and stability we’ve built and to ensure the new policies, procedures and best practices we have implemented are continually improved upon.
The hardworking lawyers and professionals in the office are now receiving the resources, technology, leadership and support needed to keep violent and white collar criminals off the streets. They are also realizing the financial compensation they deserve after more than a decade of promised but undelivered raises and resources being diverted to political causes. We don’t need a fourth attorney general in four years, particularly one who has never managed lawyers, never held a leadership position in his legal career and one who wants to learn on the job how to lead a legal office.
My emphasis would be the same as it has always been:Restoring public trust in government while protecting Utah citizens, businesses, children and Seniors from devastating effects of: (1) violent crimes, abuse, drugs, Internet predators; (2) white collar fraud and Ponzi schemes; (3) federal overreach into local and state affairs such as healthcare, education, public lands, and gun rights. I will continue to aggressively investigate and prosecute criminal cases while protecting civil liberties, defending state laws and filing suits where appropriate against the federal government to preserve states' rights.
My vision from the beginning of my tenure has been to turn the focus of the office from politics back to being a premier law firm serving the people of Utah. To make this vision a reality, my executive team and I have conducted hundreds of hours of interviews, commissioned audits and investigations of prior conduct, including client and employee surveys, to ensure staff and operations are benchmarked accurately and improved as necessary. A recent survey by the State Auditor shows almost 90% of our clients are satisfied with our performance and 31% are more satisfied today than they were only nine months ago.
Among many infrastructure improvements, we have created performance evaluations and implemented policies, procedures and training regarding ethics, conflicts-of-interest, preservation of documents and emails. I believe most of those inside the AG office would agree that my mission and approach to improving the office have paid off over the past nine months.