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U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE COLLECTS OVER $3.6 MILLION IN CIVIL AND CRIMINAL ACTIONS FOR U.S. TAXPAYERS IN FISCAL YEAR 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 10, 2014

TULSA, Okla. - United States Attorney Danny C. Williams, Sr. announced today that the Northern District of Oklahoma collected $3,604,718.18 in criminal and civil actions in Fiscal Year 2013. Of this amount, $2,320,943.69 was collected in criminal actions and $1,283,774.49 was collected in civil actions. Additionally, the Northern District of Oklahoma worked with other U.S. Attorney’s Offices and components of the Department of Justice to collect an additional $335,195,784.82 in cases pursued jointly with these offices.

Furthermore, the Northern District of Oklahoma, working with partner agencies and divisions, collected $14,964,643 in asset forfeiture actions in FY 2013. Of this amount, $964,812 was collected through criminal forfeiture and $1,251,039 through civil forfeiture. Furthermore, criminal forfeiture money judgments were entered totally $12,748,792 representing proceeds from defendants’ offenses of conviction. 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 taxpayer,” 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 Northern District’s commitment to the recovery of funds has yielded over $3.6 million in litigated matters and $1.5 million in asset forfeitures for taxpayers and federal crime victims,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “This total is a reflection of the office’s priority and the work of dedicated collections staff in the Financial Litigation Unit and Asset Forfeiture division. We will continue to hold accountable those who seek to profit from their illegal activities.”

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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