FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 17, 2001
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY’S OFFICE COLLECTS RECORD
$46 MILLION FOR FISCAL YEAR 2001
DENVER – John W. Suthers, United States Attorney for the District of Colorado, today announced that the office’s Financial Litigation Unit (FLU) and Affirmative Civil Enforcement (ACE) collected a record $46 Million on behalf of the United States during Fiscal Year 2001. The record amount collected is nearly four times the operating budget for the Colorado U.S. Attorney’s Office, which is approximately $11.7 Million. In addition, the Asset Forfeiture Unit seized assets totaling over $2.5 Million.
Collections as a result of Civil and ACE litigation in Colorado totaled $44.9 Million. This amount includes over $21 Million collected from Robert Friedland in connection with the Summitville Superfund litigation. The U.S. Attorney’s Office collected this money on behalf of: The Department of Education, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Small Business Administration, Department of Health and Human Services, Internal Revenue Service, Department of Defense, Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency, and the Environmental Protection Agency.
In addition, the Financial Litigation Unit enforced and collected $1.1 million in fines, assessments, and restitution ordered by Federal Courts in the District of Colorado following criminal case convictions.
The agencies investigating these cases include: The Drug Enforcement Administration, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Immigration and Naturalization Service, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Secret Service, United States Customs Service, Department of Defense, Joint Drug Task Force, U.S. Postal Service, Department of Interior, and the Resolution Trust Corporation.
A significant portion of the enforced fines and assessments were deposited into the Justice Department’s Crime Victims Fund during Fiscal Year 2001. The Crime Victims Fund assists victims of violent crime on the federal, state and local level including metropolitan and rural areas across the state. Colorado victims and agencies serving victims received $8 Million from this fund in Fiscal Year 2001. The enforcement of restitution orders during Fiscal Year 2001 benefitted victims of financial crime perpetrated within the District.
The United States Attorney’s Office also collected $2,520,954.30 through court-ordered forfeiture of the proceeds of criminal activity and property used to facilitate drug trafficking and other crimes. Federal law permits state and local law enforcement agencies which participated in the federal investigations leading to these forfeitures to receive a share of the proceeds. During the Fiscal Year 2001 19 state and local law enforcement agencies in Colorado received$3,784,020.82 in shared assets to support their law enforcement missions. In addition, 7 law enforcement agencies outside Colorado that assisted in investigations within Colorado which resulted in the forfeiture of assets received $28,036.52 in shared assets to support their law enforcement missions. The shared amounts include cases completed in previous years but shared in this Fiscal Year, including the largest cash seizure and forfeiture in Colorado history from a marijuana drug trafficking investigation.
One attorney and 4 employees, including a paralegal and support personnel, are responsible for the collection of federal debts, fines, restitution, and foreclosures in the District of Colorado. Most of the remaining attorneys and support staff in the District are engaged in the prosecution of criminal cases and defense of claims against the United States.
The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado services the entire State of Colorado and is headquartered in Denver.