U. S. Attorney’s Office Collects Over $8.8 Billion in Civil & Criminal Action in FY 2012 Including Largest Healthcare Fraud Settlement in U.S. History
Boston...U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz announced today that the District of Massachusetts collected over $8.8 billion in FY 2012 related to criminal and civil actions, which accounts for over 67% of the total nationwide actions. Of this amount, over $1.3 billion was collected in criminal actions and over $7.5 billion was collected in civil actions. Additionally, the office collected over $61 million in criminal and civil forfeitures.
Nationwide, the U.S. Attorneys’ offices collected $13.1 billion in criminal and civil actions during FY 2012, more than doubling the $6.5 billion collected in FY 2011. A portion of this amount, $5.3 billion, was collected in shared cases in which one or more U.S. Attorneys’ offices or department litigating divisions were also involved. The $13.1 billion represents more than six times the appropriated budget of the combined 94 offices for FY 2012.
“During this time of economic recovery, I believe that these collections are more important than ever,” said U.S. Attorney Ortiz. “We will continue to fight to recover funds for victims of federal crime and the federal treasury, holding those accountable who seek to profit from their illegal activities.”
• US v GlaxoSmithKline LLC - GSK’s payment of over $3 billion made it the largest healthcare fraud settlement in U.S. history. The settlement arose from the company’s unlawful promotion of certain prescription drugs, its failure to report certain safety data and alleged false price reporting practices.
• US v. Merck, Sharp & Dohme Corp - Merck pleaded guilty and agreed to pay over $959 million for illegally promoting and marketing the painkiller Vioxx® (rofecoxib).
The U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, along with the department’s litigating divisions, are responsible for enforcing and collecting civil and criminal debts owed to the U.S. and criminal debts owed to federal crime victims. Statistics indicate that the total amount collected in criminal actions totaled $3.035 billion in restitution, criminal fines, and felony assessments. The law requires defendants to pay restitution to victims of certain federal crimes who have suffered a physical injury or financial loss. While restitution is paid directly to the victim, criminal fines and felony assessments are paid to the department’s Crime Victims’ Fund, which distributes the funds to state victim compensation and victim assistance programs.
The statistics also indicate that $10.12 billion was collected by the U.S. Attorneys’ offices in individually and jointly handled civil actions. The largest civil collections were from affirmative civil enforcement cases, in which the United States recovered government money lost to fraud or other misconduct or collected fines imposed on individuals and/or corporations for violations of federal health, safety, civil rights or environmental laws. In addition, civil debts were collected on behalf of several federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Health and Human Services, Internal Revenue Service, and Small Business Administration.
Additionally, the U.S. Attorneys’ offices, working with partner agencies and divisions, collected $4.389 billion in asset forfeiture actions in FY 2012. Forfeited assets are deposited into the Department of Justice Assets Forfeiture Fund and Department of Treasury Forfeiture Fund and are used to restore funds to crime victims and for a variety of law enforcement purposes.
The $13.16 billion collected nationwide by the U.S. Attorneys’ offices for FY 2012 nearly matches the $13.18 billion collected in FY 2010 and FY 2011 combined.
For further information, the United States Attorneys’ Annual Statistical Reports can be found on the Internet at http://www.justice.gov/usao/reading_room/foiamanuals.html
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