Elie Honig is a CNN Legal Analyst who previously worked for 14 years as a federal and state prosecutor. He currently is Executive Director of the Rutgers Institute for Secure Communities and Special Counsel to the law firm Lowenstein Sandler, LLC.
Honig served as Deputy Director, and then Director, of the New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice from 2012 through 2018. While Director, Honig oversaw a staff of over 500 law enforcement professionals, including prosecutors, detectives, analysts and support staff. During his time as Director, the Division charged and prosecuted sweeping cases against street gangs, drug trafficking organizations, illegal firearms traffickers, corrupt public officials, child predators and white-collar corporate thieves. The Division also developed new practice areas aimed at emerging criminal threats including cybercrime, human trafficking, post-Sandy fraud and diversion of prescription painkillers. As Director, Hong spearheaded successful statewide policy initiatives focused on bail reform, police-involved shooting response, body-worn cameras, community policing, internal affairs, witness protection and deconfliction.
Prior to joining the Division of Criminal Justice, Honig worked for eight years as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, prosecuting and trying cases involving organized crime, human trafficking, public corruption, and violent crime. From 2010 through 2012, Honig served as Deputy Chief, and later Co-Chief, of the Organized Crime Unit. Honig successfully prosecuted over 100 members and associates of La Cosa Nostra, including Bosses and other high-ranking members of the Gamino and Genovese Organized Crime Families. As an Assistant United States Attorney, Honig tried 15 cases to jury verdict, and argued over 20 cases in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.
From 2000 to 2004, Honig worked as an associate at the law firm Covington & Burling, in Washington, D.C.
Honig obtained his undergraduate degree from Rutgers College in 1997, and his law degree from Harvard Law School in 2000.
As a CNN Legal Analyst, Honig provides commentary and analysis on air and in print on breaking news relating to criminal justice, national security and other legal issues. Honig also is quoted regularly in outlets including the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, Time, The Atlantic, The Guardian, Financial Times, Bloomberg, Business Insider and others.