Efforts to Prevent, Identify, and Recover Improper and Erroneous Payments
by Selected Department of Justice Components
Audit Report 07-17
Office of the Inspector General
The objectives of our audit were to determine whether selected DOJ components established:
policies and procedures for identifying improper and erroneous payments,
policies and procedures for preventing improper and erroneous payments, and
methods to recover improper and erroneous payments.
We conducted our audit in accordance with Government Auditing Standards. We included such tests as were considered necessary to accomplish the audit objectives.
The audit generally covered activities from FY 1999 through the conclusion of our fieldwork in May 2006. Audit work was conducted at the Justice Management Division and at the four DOJ components selected for review: (1) Offices, Boards and Divisions; (2) Federal Prison Industries; (3) Drug Enforcement Administration; and (4) Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. These components were selected based on a request from JMD to expand the scope of the April 2005 OIG audit to include the remaining four DOJ components mentioned above.21
Audit work was also performed at six subcomponents of the OBDs: (1) Regime Crimes Liaison Office, (2) Office on Violence Against Women, (3) Civil Division, (4) Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, (5) Executive Office for Immigration Review, and (6) Wireless Management Office.22 Our methodology for selection of the specific subcomponents of the OBDs included in our audit was to review the OBDs listing of subcomponents, select high-vendor payment subcomponents, subcomponents with foreign payments, and subcomponents with federal award functions.
We conducted on-site work at JMD and at each of the four components in March and April 2006. Additional on-site work was performed at the six selected subcomponents of the OBDs in May 2006. We interviewed staff members at each location to:
obtain an understanding of the procedures and rationale used to complete IPIA reports,
gather information relating to payment processes,
identify the controls in place to prevent or reduce improper payments,
obtain an understanding of any processes used to identify and quantify improper payments already made, and
assess any current recovery audit activities.
In addition, we reviewed policies, procedures, and other documentation related to these issues. Specifically, we reviewed the FY 2005 IPIA reports submitted by the components to JMD. The information in these reports was analyzed in conjunction with Bulletin 06-11, dated March 2006. We used this approach in order to identify any necessary enhancements for full compliance in the FY 2006 IPIA reporting period.
Finally, we interviewed officials from the recovery audit contractor being utilized by selected DOJ components and the subcomponents of the OBDs. We obtained information on current efforts within DOJ, including the processes used, results achieved, and anticipated future activities.
Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General. Department of Justice Process for Identifying, Preventing, and Recovering Improper and Erroneous Payments, Audit Report No. 05-19, April 2005.
The Regime Crimes Liaison Office is a component of the Office of the Deputy Attorney General.
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