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Asset Forfeiture Section

Section Overview

The Asset Forfeiture Section prosecutes civil and criminal asset forfeiture matters arising from a wide range of federal offenses. While a majority of the cases in the section involve narcotics and money laundering violations, the section also handles significant cases in such diverse areas as bank and health care fraud, smuggling, gambling and child exploitation.

Section Leadership

Steve Welk

Steve Welk is the Chief of the Asset Forfeiture Section. AUSA Welk has been prosecuting civil and criminal asset forfeiture cases for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Central District of California since 1995, and has been Chief of the Asset Forfeiture Section since 2001. AUSA Welk provides training to prosecutors and members of law enforcement throughout the country on federal forfeiture and money laundering issues. In 2011, he received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award for his work on the RICO prosecution of more than 80 members of the Mongols outlaw motorcycle gang. He received his B.A. degree from the University of Southern California and his J.D. from Pepperdine University School of Law.

Recent Cases

June 1, 2020
Press Release
Former Chinese Official Extradited to the United States to Face Charges of Laundering Millions of Dollars of Stolen Money

May 18, 2020
Press Release
Chino Real Estate Agent Pleads Guilty to Charge for Coordinating Multi-Million-Dollar Scheme that Funded Marijuana Grow Houses

May 6, 2020
Press Release
United States Reaches Settlement to Recover More Than $49 Million of Assets Acquired with Funds Misappropriated from 1MDB

April 14, 2020
Press Release
U.S. Repatriates $300 Million to Malaysia in Proceeds of Funds Misappropriated from 1MDB Investment Fund

February 21, 2020
Press Release
North Hollywood Man Sentenced to Nine Years in Federal Prison for Smuggling Cocaine in Household Products Shipped to Australia

Section Contact Information

The United States Attorney's Office
Central District of California
Criminal Division
Attn: Asset Forfeiture Section
312 North Spring Street
Los Angeles, California 90012

Updated June 1, 2020

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