News and Press Releases

New Mexico U.S. Attorney’s Office Collects More Than $14 Million
in Civil and Criminal Actions for U.S. Taxpayers in Fiscal Year 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 9, 2014

ALBUQUERQUE – Acting U.S. Attorney Steven C. Yarbrough announced today that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Mexico collected $1,150,777.56 in criminal and civil actions in Fiscal Year 2013.  Of this amount, $915,306.03 was collected in criminal actions and $235,471.53 was collected in civil actions.

Additionally, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Mexico worked with other components of the Department of Justice to collect an additional $11,801,237.00 in cases pursued jointly with these offices.  Of this amount, $3,840.00 was collected in criminal actions and $11,797,397.00 was collected in civil actions.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Mexico, working with partner agencies and divisions, also collected $1,292,980.00 in asset forfeiture actions and $420,544.68 in collateral forfeitures in misdemeanor prosecutions in FY 2013, bringing the Office’s total collections to $14,665,539.24.  Forfeited assets deposited into the Department of Justice Assets Forfeiture Fund are used to restore funds to crime victims and for a variety of law enforcement purposes.
             
Attorney General Eric Holder announced on Thursday that the Justice Department collected approximately $8.1 billion in civil and criminal actions in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2013.  The more than $8 billion in collections in FY 2013 represents nearly three times the appropriated $2.76 billion budget for the 94 U.S. Attorney’s offices and the main litigating divisions in that same period.

“The department’s enforcement actions help to not only ensure justice is served, but also deliver a valuable return to the American people,” said Attorney General Holder. “It is critical that Congress provide the resources necessary to match the department’s mounting caseload. As these figures show, supporting our federal prosecutors is a sound investment.”

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office is dedicated to protecting the public and recovering funds for the federal treasury and for victims of federal crime,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Steven C. Yarbrough.  “We will continue to hold accountable those who seek to profit from their illegal activities.”

Acting U.S. Attorney Yarbrough commended Assistant U.S. Attorneys Howard R. Thomas, Stephen R. Kotz, Cynthia L. Weisman, Sarah M. Davenport, Brock Taylor, William J. Pflugrath, Anna R. Wright, Paul Mysliwiec and Charles L. Barth and staff members Julie Ford, Lois Agnes, Feather Astor, Lois Golden, Sandra Campbell, Robbie Mahan, Doreen Dowling and Elizabeth Buckley for their combined efforts in recovering funds on behalf of the United States.  He also commended U.S. Marshal Conrad E. Candelaria and the U.S. Marshals Service for facilitating the collection of funds from the criminal and civil forfeiture actions.

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.  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 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 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, Small Business Administration and Department of Education.

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