FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS, Ill. – U.S. Attorney Rachelle Aud Crowe announced today that her office collected
$6,558,705.15 in civil and criminal actions in Fiscal Year 2022. Of that amount,
$4,020,660.31 was collected in civil cases, and $2,538,044.84 was collected in criminal cases. The
FY 2022 criminal debt collection total exceeded the average of the previous five fiscal years by
more than $1,000,000. The federal fiscal year runs from October 1st to September 30th.
“The fact that we were able to collect more than $6 million dollars this year demonstrates the
dedication and skill of the members of our financial litigation unit, as well as the excellent case
work done by our civil and criminal divisions,” said U.S. Attorney Crowe. “The work of collecting
restitution from criminal defendants and returning funds to victims of crime is a critical part of
the job for all prosecutors,” she continued.
U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, along with the Department of Justice’s litigating divisions, are
responsible for enforcing and collecting civil and criminal debts owed to the United States 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 victims, criminal fines and felony assessments are paid to the Department’s
Crime Victims Fund, which distributes the funds collected to federal and state victim compensation
and victim assistance programs.
U.S. Attorney Crowe also said, “These collections represent civil settlements, restitution to
victims, as well as fines and monetary penalties. This money is back where it belongs – in the
hands of victims and the taxpayers.”
Working with partner agencies and divisions, the Southern District of Illinois also collected
$539,030.27 in asset forfeiture actions in FY 2022. The Department’s Asset Forfeiture Program
encompasses the seizure and forfeiture of assets that represent the proceeds of, or were used to
facilitate, federal crimes. Forfeited assets deposited into the Department’s Assets Forfeiture
Fund are used to restore funds to crime victims and for a variety of law enforcement purposes.
The Department of Justice and the Department of the Treasury Asset Forfeiture Programs are, first
and foremost, law enforcement programs. They remove the tools of crime from criminal organizations,
deprive wrongdoers of the proceeds of their crimes, recover property that may be used to compensate
victims, and deter crime. The Department of Justice and the Department of the Treasury emphasize
these law enforcement purposes to their own law enforcement agencies
and all federal, state, local, and tribal partner agencies.