NEW YORK – Today, the Asian American Police Executives Council (AAPEX), Hugh H. Mo Esq., AAPEX Chairman and former Deputy Police Commissioner of Trials and Virginia Kee, Founder and Board Member of the Chinese American Planning Council and President Emeritus of UDO endorsed Tali Farhadian Weinstein for Manhattan district attorney.
“Amid the rise in Asian hate crimes and violent crimes across the city, we believe Tali is the most experienced and capable candidate to hold the position of Manhattan DA,” said AAPEX President Capt. Jun Zhen. “Tali has the formidable experiences, the track record, and the vision to reshape the office and rededicate its core mission of public safety, including curbing violent crimes and protecting the most vulnerable. She would enforce not only the letter of the law but also the spirit of the law. We are confident that under her leadership, Tali will implement stronger community relations between the DA’s office and the Asian-American community.”
AAPEX is a fraternal organization of Asian American executive rank members (Captain and above) in the New York Police Department, formed in response to the unprecedented growth in the number of East Asian descent executives in the Department. The Council aims to increase those numbers by offering mentorship to Asian American officers, cultivating them for leadership positions, and helping them rise through the ranks.
“COVID-19 has caused many hardships and economic struggles. But it is Asian Americans who have been scapegoated as the cause of the pandemic and, as a result, fear for their safety. The patriotism of Asian Americans and their right to safety are in question,” said Hugh Mo. “Having fled the violence and antisemitism of revolutionary Iran, Tali uniquely understands what our community is struggling with daily. As district attorney, I believe she will bring empathy to the letter and the spirit of the law and ensure the people of New York will be protected.”
Hugh H. Mo Esq. was the first Asian American to be appointed as an Assistant District Attorney in Manhattan. He later served as the Deputy Commissioner in Charge of Trials, making him the highest-ranking Asian American in New York City government at the time. Mr. Mo is one of AAPEX’s founding members and currently serves as its President & Director Emeritus and as Chairman of its Advisory Board.
“Asian Americans need the next Manhattan district attorney to understand their hardships,” said Virginia Kee, Founder and Board Member of the Chinese American Planning Council and President Emeritus of UDO. “With her immigrant background and extensive resume, Tali is uniquely qualified to lead and oversee the investigation and prosecution of thousands of cases — including hate crimes. Under her leadership, I am confident that our streets will be safer and true criminal justice reform will be achieved.”
“As immigrants, we made sacrifices because we understand that a life without fairness and safety means a life without opportunity and prosperity. I am grateful to be an American every day, but I also realize that we have not perfected our country’s promises,” said Tali Farhadian Weinstein. “The Asian community is integral to the cultural and economic lifeblood of New York City. I understand the vulnerability of my fellow immigrants, and I will do my part as a prosecutor to ensure they and every New Yorker are safe, whether it is at home, in the street, on the subway, or in their place of work. I am honored to have the support of AAPEX, Hugh Mo, and Virginia Kee and look forward to developing solutions together.”
In March, Tali announced her plan to fight the disturbing increase in racially motivated crime against Asians. Tali’s policy addresses prevention and response to hate crimes, as well as strengthening trust with the Asian community and building a more inclusive district attorney’s office.
As New York City reopens, Asian New Yorkers rightfully fear isolation and instability. Hate crimes targeting this community soared in 2020, increasing 833%. In March, Mo and Weinstein co-hosted a forum on Anti-Asian hate crimes to discuss with community stakeholders and members of the Asian Hate Crimes Task Force the current crisis and strategies to make New York safe for everyone.
As a member of the New York State Bar Association Task Force on Hate Crimes and Domestic Terrorism, Tali recommended legislative and other reforms to better address acts of hate. She will draw on that expertise as district attorney. Her background as both a local and federal prosecutor has prepared her to hold the perpetrators of hateful attacks accountable, implement investigation and prosecution strategies that will prevent future incidents, educate the public, and build trust with the Asian community of Manhattan.
The endorsement of AAPEX, Hugh Mo and Virginia Kee follows the recent endorsements of NOW-NYC and Gloria Steinem.
Tali is also endorsed by Congressman Ritchie Torres (NY-15), Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez (NY-7), Congressman Adriano Espaillat (NY-13), US Attorney General Eric Holder, former NAACP President Ben Jealous, esteemed First Amendment lawyer Victor Kovner and his wife, activist Sarah Kovner, former Manhattan Borough President Ruth Messinger, and Jackie Rowe-Adams, co-founder of Harlem Mothers S.A.V.E., Carol Bellamy, and Letty Cottin Pogrebin.