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Sessions relaunches Bush era crime-fighting plan

UPDATED: Thu., Oct. 5, 2017

In this July 21, 2017 file photo, Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks in Philadelphia. (Matt Rourke / AP)
In this July 21, 2017 file photo, Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks in Philadelphia. (Matt Rourke / AP)
By Sadie Gurman Associated Press

WASHINGTON – Attorney General Jeff Sessions is reviving a Bush era crime-fighting strategy that emphasizes aggressive prosecution of gun and gang crimes.

He announced on Thursday a relaunch of the program known as Project Safe Neighborhoods. It’s the latest move in the Trump administration’s tough-on-crime agenda.

The Justice Department has asked Congress for $70 million for the effort. Part of it focuses on sending certain gun crimes to federal court, where they carry longer sentences in far-away prisons.

Officials say local law enforcement will have faster access to technology that helps solve shootings. And Justice Department officials say community groups will also be involved.

Congress eliminated funding for an earlier iteration of the program. Some groups had expressed concern that it focused too heavily on common criminals as opposed to major players.

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