Bank and Thrift Criminal Fraud:

Information on Justice's Investigations and Prosecutions

GGD-93-10FS: Published: Oct 5, 1992. Publicly Released: Oct 23, 1992.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Department of Justice's investigations of criminal bank and thrift fraud, focusing on: (1) the recorded number of prosecutions and the number of investigations and cases that U.S. Attorneys declined to proceed with; (2) the amounts of fines and restitution that the government collected; and (3) the adequacy of Justice's resources.

GAO found that: (1) Justice activity against criminal misconduct involving banks and thrifts has increased over the past several years, as it has applied more resources to investigations and prosecutions; (2) Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) investigations into criminal bank and thrift fraud have increased significantly; (3) Justice has indicted and convicted an increasing number of individuals for major frauds; (4) U.S. Attorneys have declined to proceed with a large number of investigations and cases over the same period; (4) Justice's Special Counsel for Financial Institutions Fraud stated that the percentage of U.S. Attorney declinations reflects the changing emphasis given to major cases; and (5) Justice recognizes that the information it has on fines and restitution is not complete.

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