U.S. Attorney’s Office Collects over $45 Million in Civil and Criminal Actions for U.S. Taxpayers in FY 2013
Alexandria, Virginia – Acting U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente announced today that the Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA) collected $45,088,361.82 in criminal and civil actions in Fiscal Year 2013. Of this amount, $24,291,184.24 was collected in criminal actions and $20,797,177.58 was collected in civil actions.
Additionally, EDVA worked with other U.S. Attorney’s Offices and components of the Department of Justice to collect an additional $473,911,812.38 in cases pursued jointly with these offices. Of this amount, $2,384,207.68 was collected in criminal actions and $471,527,604.70 was collected in civil actions.
Attorney General Eric Holder announced on Wednesday 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 collections announced today reflect the tremendous work being done to recover the ill-gotten gains of criminal activity, protect American taxpayers from fraud and other misconduct, and enforce civil rights,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Boente. “We are committed to working with the Justice Department and our law enforcement partners to hold accountable those who harm members of the community and the public fisc.”
In March 2013, the U.S. Attorney’s Office recovered $3 million as part of a settlement with three CIA contractors—American Systems Corporation, Anixter International Inc., and Corning Cable Systems LLC—regarding allegations that the companies violated the False Claims Act and the Anti-Kickback Act in bidding on a contract with the CIA. The United States alleged that the contractors provided gratuities, including meals, entertainment, gifts, and tickets to sporting and other events, to CIA employees and outside consultants in order to influence contract specifications that would favor the three companies in the award of the contract. The settlement also resolved allegations that the three companies improperly received source selection information from a CIA employee to whom they had provided gratuities, and that they had concealed the gratuities prior to award.
During fiscal year 2013, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia also worked with the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and other U.S. Attorney’s Offices to collect and disburse funds paid from a major settlement to resolve claims of discrimination in mortgage lending programs operated by Wells Fargo Bank. As part of that settlement, Wells Fargo agreed to pay over $184 million to borrower assistance programs and related efforts targeted at helping African-American and Hispanic homeowners in affected communities.
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.Additionally, the U.S. Attorney’s Office, working with partner agencies and divisions, collected $17,921,285 in asset forfeiture actions in FY 2013. 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.