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Civil Fraud Section

Section Overview

The Civil Fraud Section’s principal mission is the recovery of federal funds obtained by fraud.  The government’s primary tool in such cases is the civil False Claims Act.  In fact, the vast majority of the Section’s cases are False Claims Act cases, and most of them are whistleblower actions brought by “qui tam relators,” who are generally entitled to 15% to 30% of the recovery in such actions.  The remainder of the Section’s cases consists of miscellaneous penalty and damages actions, such as actions against pharmacies that violate the Controlled Substances Act, and actions to recover penalties imposed by administrative agencies.

The majority of the Section’s False Claims Act cases involve fraud against Medicare, Medicaid, and other federal health insurance programs.  The next largest percentage of the Section’s cases involves military procurement fraud by defense contractors.  The remaining cases involve fraud against various other federal agencies, such as the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the General Services Administration, the Department of Agriculture, the Customs Service, and the Postal Service.

Since 2001, the Civil Fraud Section has recovered in excess of $2.75 billion.


David Barrett

Chief, Civil Fraud Section

David Barrett joined the Office in June 1999, working in the Civil Fraud Section and serving as a Deputy Chief in Civil Fraud from February 2012 to December 2013. He was appointed Civil Fraud Chief in December 2013, and has been a Professional Responsibility Officer since February 2014. David has handled and supervised all types of False Claims Act cases, including healthcare fraud, defense and non-defense procurement fraud, as well as affirmative civil enforcement actions on behalf of a wide variety of government agencies. For his accomplishments in the healthcare fraud case against Tenet Healthcare Corporation, in which the government recovered $900 million, David received the Attorney General’s Award for Fraud Prevention, Special Commendation for Outstanding Service in the Civil Division, and the Office of Inspector General Cooperative Achievement Award from the Department of Health and Human Services. Prior to coming to the Office, David was a litigation associate at Morrison & Foerster and one of its predecessor law firms, Hufstedler & Kaus, as well as a Los Angeles County Deputy Public Defender. David received his J.D. degree from UCLA School of Law, where he was named a Distinguished Advocate in moot court competition, and obtained a bachelor’s degree, with distinction, in international relations from Stanford University.

Recent Cases

May 13, 2020
Press Release
Omnicare Agrees to Pay Over $15 Million to Resolve Allegations It Improperly Dispensed Opioids at Long-Term Care Facilities

February 21, 2020
Press Release
Wells Fargo Agrees to Pay $3 Billion to Resolve Criminal and Civil Investigations into Sales Practices Involving the Opening of Millions of Accounts Without Customer Authorization

February 6, 2020
Press Release
Successor to L.A.’s Redevelopment Agency Reaches $3.1 Million Settlement in Case Alleging Misuse of Federal Housing Funds

December 19, 2019
Press Release
Mid-Wilshire Cancer Doctor and His Medical Office Agree to Pay Over $3 Million to Settle Claims They Defrauded Medicare and Medi-Cal

October 4, 2019
Press Release
Eye Doctor Group, Physicians Pay $6.65 Million to Settle Allegations They Submitted Fraudulent Bills to Medicare and Medicaid

Section Contact Information

The United States Attorney's Office
Central District of California
Civil Division
Attn: Civil Fraud Section
300 North Los Angeles Street, Suite 7516
Los Angeles, California 90012

Updated May 13, 2020

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