For Immediate Release

December 01, 2011


Victims of Fraud Can Call the Immigrant Affairs Program Complaint Hotline at 212-335-3600

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the appointments of Assistant District Attorneys Mayerling Rivera and Rosemary Yu as co-Directors of the Office’s Immigrant Affairs Program. The Program was established in 2007 to investigate and prosecute fraud committed against immigrants, and to educate the public about immigration fraud and related issues through fraud prevention workshops and seminars. Since its creation, the Program has fielded more than 2,100 complaints.

“I would like to congratulate Assistant District Attorneys Mayerling Rivera and Rosemary Yu on their well-deserved appointments” said District Attorney Vance. “Keeping this city’s immigrant population safe is one of our top priorities. In their new roles, Ms. Rivera and Ms. Yu will spearhead our Office’s efforts to educate the public about immigration fraud and aggressively prosecute individuals who victimize our immigrant communities.”

District Attorney Vance also thanked Assistant District Attorney Daysi Mejia for her outstanding service during her four years as the founding Attorney-in-Charge of the Program.

Ms. Rivera joined the office in 1996 and spent eight years in Trial Bureau 70, where she prosecuted a variety of violent street crimes. During that time, she was also assigned to both the Sex Crimes and the Domestic Violence Units, and tried numerous felony sex crimes and domestic violence cases. In 2004, she transferred to the former Family Violence and Child Abuse Bureau, where she worked on both domestic violence and child abuse investigations. Recently, she has been assigned to the Special Victims Bureau, where she supervises domestic violence cases, conducts trainings, and handles U-Visa certifications. Throughout her career, Ms. Rivera has done extensive community work throughout the city, focusing specifically on Washington Heights. In addition to her case-related work, Ms. Rivera has frequently spoken on behalf of the Office on a variety of subjects including teen violence, child abuse, and domestic violence. A native New Yorker and fluent Spanish speaker who was raised in Washington Heights, Ms. Rivera is a graduate of Seton Hall University and received her law degree from Seton Hall University School of Law.

Ms. Yu is a native New Yorker who was raised in Chinatown. She joined the Office in 2005, following her graduation from Catholic University of America’s Columbus School of Law. Ms. Yu was initially assigned to the Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor, where she handled numerous felony narcotics cases and investigations. In 2008, she was one of four ADAs recognized by Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget Brennan for her outstanding case work. In 2009, Ms. Yu was assigned to the Special Investigations Bureau, where she worked almost exclusively with the Drug Enforcement Administration Task Force on long-term narcotics investigations using electronic eavesdropping and other investigatory tools. Ms. Yu was assigned last year as one of the five inaugural ADAs in the new Crime Strategies Unit, where she is currently responsible for intelligence coordination and understanding crime trends for the east side of Manhattan South. Ms. Yu is also one of the founding members of the Prosecutors’ Committee of the Asian American Bar Association of New York. She is a graduate of Stuyvesant High School and Claremont McKenna College. After graduating from college, Ms. Yu worked for one year for former U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao.

The appointments will be effective as of December 9, 2011.

AABANY Press Release on Karen Wu Receiving Outstanding Young Lawyer Award


December 5, 2011

Contact: Yang Chen, Executive Director


NEW YORK – December 5, 2011 – The Asian American Bar Association of New York (“AABANY”) applauds the selection of Karen I. Wu, co-chair of AABANY’S Pro Bono and Community Service Committee, as the recipient of the 2012 New York State Bar Association (“NYSBA”) Outstanding Young Lawyer Award.

The NYSBA will be presenting the 2012 Outstanding Young Lawyer Award at an Award Presentation and Reception during the NYSBA Annual Meeting on Thursday, January 26, 2012 at the New York Hilton in New York City.  Each year, the NYSBA’s Young Lawyers Section honors a young lawyer who has rendered outstanding service to both the community and legal profession.  The Outstanding Young Lawyer Award recognizes an attorney who has actively practiced less than 10 years, and has a distinguished record of commitment to the finest traditions of the Bar through public service and professional activities.

“We congratulate Karen, and we are grateful to the NYSBA Young Lawyers Section for recognizing Karen’s exemplary legal work and continued commitment to the public interest community,” states AABANY President-elect, Jean Lee.  “I am truly honored and humbled to receive the NYSBA’s 2012 Outstanding Young Lawyer Award.  I am extremely fortunate to be able to practice law in an area that has a positive social impact, and it has always been important for me to serve the community in a volunteer capacity as well.  Volunteering is not always convenient, but I have seen how communities are changed when people give their time to serve others, and would encourage all attorneys to find ways to make a difference,” says Karen.

Karen I. Wu is an associate at Perlman & Perlman, LLP, a New York City-based law firm, which focuses on representing the philanthropic community.  Karen has provided counsel to public charities, private foundations, fundraising professionals, and for-profit companies engaging in cause marketing and philanthropy.  She advises clients on a variety of issues including corporate governance and tax issues, fundraising regulatory compliance, joint ventures, political activities, business activities, and intellectual property matters. She is the author of several articles regarding fundraising regulation and tax compliance, and has provided several workshops and teleconferences to various members of the nonprofit community.  Karen is a board member of the Townsend Harris High School Alumni Association, as well as Open Hands Legal Services, a nonprofit organization that provides free legal services and counseling to the poor in New York City.  She serves as Pro Bono Counsel to the National Collegiate Table Tennis Association and Taiwan Mission Foundation.  She currently serves as the co-chair of the Pro Bono and Community Service Committee of the AABANY.  Karen earned a J.D. from Brooklyn Law School in 2004, and a B.A. from Wellesley College in 2000. 


The Asian American Bar Association of New York (“AABANY”) is a professional membership organization of attorneys concerned with issues affecting the Asian Pacific American community.  Incorporated in 1989, AABANY seeks not only to encourage the professional growth of its members but also to advocate for the Asian Pacific American community as a whole.  AABANY is the New York regional affiliate of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA).  To learn more about AABANY, visit www.aabany.org

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