Some people choose to serve their country by taking a job in the federal civil service, committing themselves to a career that promotes the public interest. Others choose to make their contribution by serving in the military. Robert Henoch does both. And in the process, he has helped bring down the most powerful crime family in America, rooted out corruption in the nation’s largest police department, cracked down on child abusers and orchestrated thousands of missions in the Persian Gulf in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
In his day job, Robert Henoch is an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of New York. In less than three years as federal prosecutor, he has played a central role in putting some of the worst bad guys in America behind bars.
In early 2003, he was assigned to the team tasked with prosecuting Joseph Massino, the longstanding boss of the Bonanno crime family and, at the time of his arrest, the most powerful mafia boss in the United States. Henoch was one of three attorneys assigned to this case, the most significant organized crime trial in the United States in more than a decade. To date, 35 defendants have pled guilty or been convicted as part of the Massino prosecution, and a total of more than 70 defendants have been charged, including two acting bosses, the under-boss, 18 captains and the most powerful member of the Bonanno family’s Canadian crew.
In 2004, Mr. Henoch was assigned to lead the investigation of two former NYPD detectives who were suspected of working for organized crime. Henoch’s team would uncover that these alleged rogue detectives routinely passed sensitive information to high-ranking members of the Luchese crime family, disclosed the identities of numerous cooperating witnesses and compromised several state and federal investigations. In March 2005, Henoch unsealed an indictment charging these two officers with eight murders, two attempted murders, drug distribution and money laundering.
In 2004, Mr. Henoch also organized the Child Exploitation Prosecutions Initiative. This effort coordinates various federal, state and local investigations of sexual exploitation of children. Thus far, Henoch’s work has resulted in the successful prosecution of approximately 25 persons for crimes that involve sexual exploitation of children, to include the production and trafficking of child pornography, coercion, enticement and sexual abuse.
Robert Henoch began his public service career in 1984 as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army. Since leaving the Army, he has remained active in the Reserves. As a result, his demanding civilian public service career has been punctuated by active military duty assignments. On September 11th, he took part in the Army’s rescue and recovery work at Ground Zero. One year later, he was deployed to the Persian Gulf in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. In the Gulf, he was the Commander of a Movement Control Team. In this position, he was responsible for orchestrating the movement of cargo and personnel for more than 24,000 tons of cargo to multiple destinations and the completion of more than 3,600 inbound and outbound missions.
Simply put, when it comes to serving your country, few people do it in more ways or better than Robert Henoch. He is a true unsung American hero. He has an eagle and the American flag on his business card, a soldier’s uniform in his closet, and if you were to catch him coming out of a phone booth, you would probably find an “S” on his chest.