CHARLESTON, WV (LOOTPRESS) – United States Attorney Mike Stuart announced that his office collected $9,244,423.94 in FY 2020 and $22,761,541.52 in FY 2019, an amount more than$18.4 million over his office’s entire annual appropriated budgets for the same period. Of this amount, $29,082,086.10 was collected in civil actions and $2,923,879.33 was collected in criminal actions. The operating budget for the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia during the time period was approximately $13.6 million. Total collections exceeded the office’s budget by more than 135%.
“I am very proud of the incredible efforts of my team. During the last two fiscal years, our efforts brought in more than $18.4 million over the cost of all operations. In private sector terms, that’s called ‘remarkably profitable.’ A return for taxpayers in excess of 135% over two years is a return for which even the best companies would be proud, but we don’t do this to make a profit. We don’t do this to make money. We do this to deliver justice to victims, thetaxpayers and our citizens,” said United States Attorney Mike Stuart. “The $18.4 million and 135% return represents a remarkable victory for victims and taxpayers. The $32 million collected by my office over the last two fiscal years demonstrates the significant return on investment that our work delivers. The substantial amount only includes the actual amounts collected and not the full amount of monies due as a result of our great work. Restitution often takes many years to realize. The taxpayers are the beneficiaries of great teamwork by my entire team and our federal, state and local law enforcement partners. We all share a commitment to ensuring that taxpayer dollars are used prudently and properly and that wrongdoers are held accountable for financial losses resulting from their crimes.”
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 healthcare, 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, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on behalf of Medicare and Medicaid, the Internal Revenue Service, the Small Business Administration and the Department of Education.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia.