U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman announced today that the Northern District of Ohio office collected $28,603,085.75 in civil and criminal actions in the fiscal year 2020 (FY 2020). Of this amount, $21,612,213.13 was collected in civil actions, and $6,990,872.62 was collected in criminal actions.
Additionally, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Ohio, working with partner agencies and divisions, collected $11,469,460.00 in asset forfeiture actions in FY 2020. Forfeited assets deposited into the Department of Justice Assets Forfeiture Fund are used to restore funds to crime victims and for various law enforcement purposes.
Accordingly, a combined $40,072,545 was collected by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Ohio in FY 2020.
“This year, when many of our processes and procedures were forced to change due to the pandemic, the Northern District was nonetheless able to recover a substantial number of funds from numerous civil and criminal judgments,” said U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman. “When we represent the United States of America and secure a collection judgment, we will seek to recover every dollar possible.”
The Justice Department collected more than $15.9 billion in civil and criminal actions in FY 2020, ending Sept. 30, 2020. The $15,988,516,670 in collections in FY 2020 represents more than five times the approximately $3.2 billion appropriated budget for the 94 U.S. Attorneys’ offices and the main litigating divisions of the Justice Department combined in that same period. The total includes all monies collected as a result of Justice Department-led enforcement actions and negotiated civil settlements. It includes more than $13.5 billion in payments made directly to the Justice Department and more than $2.4 billion in indirect payments made to other federal agencies, states and other designated recipients.
Notable collections in fiscal year 2020 include:
The Cannon Corporation, aka Cannon Design, $9,000,000
In 2016, Cannon Design agreed to pay a $12 million dollar penalty, implement a series of corporate reforms and divest itself from a large project to resolve the company’s criminal liability for the conduct of more than a dozen employees, including paying bribes and kickbacks to obtain confidential information related to Department of Veterans Affairs construction projects.
Mu Sigma, Inc, $1,600,000
The civil settlement resulted in a recovery of $1.6 million after a joint criminal investigation into an international analytics service company alleged to be illegally using B-1 visitor for business visas to circumvent the H1-B nonimmigrant worker visa cap. This was a joint investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Ohio, Northern District of Texas, Department of Homeland Security and the Department of State.
Alex Spirikaitis, $671,366.90
Spirikaitis was ordered to pay $15,000,000 in restitution in December of 2014 after entering a guilty plea to leading a conspiracy that defrauded a credit union out of $15 million.
Donald R. Peyatt, $250,000
Peyatt was ordered to pay $250,000 in restitution in August of 2019 after entering a guilty plea to making material false statements to the IRS regarding income from a scrap steel business he owned with another person.
Ryan Driscoll, $208,693
Driscoll was ordered to pay $208,693.00 in restitution in July of 2020 after entering a guilty plea to running an illegal sports gambling business with others, laundering the proceeds and filing a false income tax return.
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 collected to federal and state victim compensation and victim assistance programs.
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.