Springfield, Ill. - U.S. Attorney Jim Lewis announced today that the Central District of Illinois collected $5,769,736 million for taxpayers in criminal and civil actions in fiscal year 2015. Of this amount, $3,402,513 was collected in criminal actions by the Central District and $2,367,233 in civil actions. In addition, working with other Department of Justice entities, $23,420 was collected in criminal actions and $1,362,086 was collected in civil actions.
Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch announced today that the Justice Department collected $23.1 billion in civil and criminal actions in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2015. The more than $23.1 billion in collections in FY 2015 represents more than seven and a half times the approximately $2.93 billion of the Justice Department’s combined appropriations for the 94 U.S. Attorneys’ offices and the main litigating divisions in the same period.
"The Department of Justice is committed to upholding the rule of law, safeguarding taxpayer resources, and protecting the American people from exploitation and abuse,” said Attorney General Loretta Lynch. “The collections we are announcing today demonstrate not only the strength of that commitment, but also the significant return on public investment that our actions deliver. I want to thank the prosecutors and trial attorneys who made this achievement possible, and to reiterate our dedication to this ongoing work.”
“We hold people accountable when the law says that they should be accountable,” said U.S. Attorney Lewis. “We collect restitution for victims of crime, we collect damages if there has been fraud in government programs, we collect debts owed to the government, and we protect federal funds and the public treasury. We do our very best to make sure that justice is done.”
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.
Additionally, the U.S. Attorney’s office in the Central District of Illinois, working with partner agencies and divisions, collected $218,374 in asset forfeiture actions in FY 2015. 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.