CHARLESTON – United States Attorney Booth Goodwin on Monday said his office has collected $7,847,442.99 in fiscal year 2014.
Of this amount, $2,887,853 was collected in criminal actions, $2,430,992 was collected in civil actions, and $1,923.369.99 was collected in asset forfeiture.
Additionally, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia worked with other U.S. Attorneys’ offices and components of the Department of Justice to collect an additional $605,227 in cases jointly pursued. Of this amount, $1,227 was collected in criminal actions and $604,000 was collected in civil actions.
Attorney General Eric Holder announced on Nov. 19 that the Justice Department collected $24.7 billion in civil and criminal actions in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2014. The more than $24 billion in collections in FY 2014 represents nearly eight and a half times the appropriated $2.91 billion budget for the 94 U.S. Attorney’s offices and the main litigating divisions in that same period.
“Every day, the Justice Department’s federal prosecutors and trial attorneys work hard to protect our citizens, to safeguard precious taxpayer resources, and to provide a valuable return on investment to the American people,” Holder said. “Their diligent efforts are enabling us to achieve justice and recoup losses in virtually every sector of the U.S. economy.
"And this result shows the fruits of the Justice Department’s tireless work in enforcing federal laws; in protecting the American people from violent crime, national security threats, discrimination, exploitation, and abuse; and in holding financial institutions accountable for their roles in causing the 2008 financial crisis.”
“The nearly $8 million collected represents more than 1.5 times the total operating budget for my office for an entire year," he said. "These collections represent the collaborative efforts of my civil and criminal divisions, attorneys and staff, and numerous federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.
"Working together, we not only keep our communities safer, but we hold those committing crimes financially accountable and disgorge their dishonest gains.”
This past May, the Southern District of West Virginia recovered $4.675 million as part of the settlement with Massachusetts-based Calloway Laboratories, Inc. relating to false billings submitted to West Virginia Medicaid and nationwide to Medicare. The settlement represents the largest-ever recovery in a health care fraud case by a United States Attorney’s Office in West Virginia.
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.
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.
In addition to the civil and criminal collections, Goodwin’s office working with partner agencies and divisions, collected $1,923,369.99 in asset forfeiture actions in FY 2014.
Forfeited assets are used to restore funds to crime victims and for a variety of law enforcement purposes. This makes the total amount collected by Goodwin’s office in fiscal year 2014 to $7,847,442.99.