The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois collected nearly $75 million in criminal, civil and asset forfeiture actions in fiscal year 2017.
The 2017 collections included $29.7 million in criminal actions, $28.7 million in civil actions, and $16 million in asset forfeiture actions. The total more than doubles the office’s fiscal year 2017 budget of $29.2 million.
“Our attorneys and staff work diligently to recover meaningful funds for the federal treasury and victims of federal crimes,” said U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois John Lausch. “We have an important responsibility to do everything within our power to ensure that the proceeds of criminal and civil fraud are recovered, and that restitution is made to the victims whenever possible.”
The collections included $234,308 in criminally forfeited proceeds from the tax prosecution of northwest suburban couple Patty and Mario Cordoba, and $315,170 in criminal and administrative forfeitures arising from the south suburban drug prosecution of Emiliano Cruz.
The office in fiscal year 2017 restored more than $2 million to victims of federal crimes, including a significant amount to the victims of Chicago accountant Nina Mendez’s fraud scheme.
The office worked with other U.S. Attorney’s offices across the country and components of the Department of Justice to collect an additional $218.9 million in criminal and civil cases pursued jointly with those offices.
Nationally, the Department of Justice collected more than $15 billion in civil and criminal actions in fiscal year 2017, which ended Sept. 30. The largest collections nationally 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 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.