DOJ to name a chief prosecutor for pandemic fraud, Biden says
President Biden announced Tuesday night that the Department of Justice will name a chief prosecutor for pandemic fraud.
“We’re gonna go after the criminals who stole billions of relief money meant for small business and millions of Americans,” Biden said during his State of the Union address.
“Tonight, I’m announcing that the Justice Department will soon name a chief prosecutor for pandemic fraud,” Biden said.
The White House said in an accompanying fact sheet that the prosecutor will “focus on the most egregious forms of pandemic fraud.”
The department’s COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force “will expand its already robust efforts by appointing a Chief Prosecutor to lead teams of specialized prosecutors and agents focusing on major targets of pandemic fraud, such as those committing large-scale identity theft, including foreign-based actors,” the White House said.
“These strike force teams will also use state-of-the-art data analytics tools to connect the dots on identity theft and other complex fraud schemes committed across state lines or transnationally, as well as investigate major cases of criminal fraud in programs like the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Unemployment Insurance (UI),” it added.
This comes after the U.S. Secret Service selected a senior agency official to serve as the National Pandemic Fraud Recovery coordinator. In December, the agency said it had already seized more than $1.2 billion worth of relief funds that were illegally obtained and returned more than $2.3 billion in illegally obtained funds.