LOS ANGELES – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California collected $42,370,356 as a result of criminal prosecutions and civil lawsuits during the 2015 fiscal year, United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker announced today.
The amount collected for U.S. taxpayers during FY2015 is the result of nearly $19 million collected in criminal actions, and approximately $23.4 million collected in civil actions.
Additionally, the U.S. Attorney’s Office worked with other offices and Justice Department components to collect an additional $10.54 billion, most of which was related to massive settlements with Bank of America and Standard & Poor’s Financial Service in cases in which proceeds were collected in FY 2015, which ended on September 30.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office also collected $33,353,717 in criminal and civil asset forfeiture proceedings. 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.
“Year after year, my office is involved in the collection of hundreds of millions of dollars – much of which goes the U.S. Treasury to fund government operations and to victims of crime,” said United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker. “Assistant U.S. Attorneys in this office continually demonstrate their deep commitment to being fiscally responsible and working on behalf of the victims of crime.”
The United States Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California is based in Los Angeles and has branch offices in Santa Ana and Riverside. Currently, approximately 230 Assistant United States Attorneys serve more than 19 million residents of the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the other litigating divisions in the Justice Department’s 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.
Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch announced last week that the Justice Department collected $23.1 billion in civil and criminal actions in FY 2015 (see: http://go.usa.gov/cBpWY).
The largest came from financial institutions whose risky practices led up to the 2008 financial crisis and collapse of the U.S. housing market, including $8.2 billion of the settlement in August 2014 with Bank of America Corporation, which included $5 billion in penalties for claims under the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA) – the largest FIRREA penalty ever - and $687 million from the February 2015 settlement with McGraw Hill Financial Inc. and Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC.