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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, December 21, 2016

U.S. Attorney’s Office for The Northern District Of Georgia Collects Over $108 Million in Civil and Criminal Actions in Fiscal Year 2016

ATLANTA - U.S. Attorney John A. Horn announced today that the Northern District of Georgia aided in the collection of over $108 million for U.S. taxpayers in the fiscal year ending September 30, 2016. The Northern District of Georgia directly collected $13,226,147 in criminal and civil actions. Of this amount, $7,596,531 was collected in criminal actions and $5,629,616 was collected in civil actions. Additionally, the Northern District of Georgia worked with other U.S. Attorney’s Offices and components of the Department of Justice to collect an extra $95,443,068 in cases pursued jointly with these offices.  Of this joint amount, $546,612 was collected in criminal actions and $94,896,456 was collected in civil actions.

Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch announced on December 14, 2016 that the Justice Department collected nearly $15.4 billion in civil and criminal actions in fiscal year 2016.  The $15,380,130,434 in collections in FY 2016 represents more than five times the appropriated $2.93 billion budget for the 94 U.S. Attorneys’ offices and the main litigating divisions of the Justice Department combined in that same period.

"Every day, the men and women of the Department of Justice work tirelessly to enforce our laws, ensuring that taxpayer dollars are used properly and that the American people are protected from exploitation and abuse,” said Attorney General Lynch. “Today’s announcement is a testament to that work, and it makes clear that our actions deliver a significant return on public investment.  I want to thank the prosecutors and trial attorneys who made this year's collections possible, and I want to emphasize that the department remains committed to the well-being of our people and our nation.”

“Financial enforcement of monetary penalties is a critical element of our office’s mission,” said U.S. Attorney John Horn. “We must ensure that crime does not pay.  With the help of our partner agencies, we continue to focus on efforts to cheat the public and the government and to hold the perpetrators financially accountable.”

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.

One of the largest criminal collections for FY2016 in the Northern District of Georgia was recovered in United States v. Jeffrey W. Edwards, an investment fraud case which involved more than thirty individual victims.  Over $710,000 was collected on these victims’ behalf as a result of various enforcement methods, including garnishments.

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 for the Northern District of Georgia working with partner agencies and divisions, collected $10,014,052 in asset forfeiture actions in FY 2016.  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.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.

Updated December 21, 2016