Department of Justice, 30 June 2021
The Department of Justice announced today that the Western Union Remission Fund began its third distribution of approximately $66 million in funds forfeited to the United States from the Western Union Company (Western Union) to approximately 6,000 victims located in the United States and abroad. These victims, many of whom were elderly victims of consumer fraud, will be recovering the full amount of their losses.
This is the third in a series of distributions. The first two distributions paid more than $300 million to over 142,000 victims, all of whom received full compensation for their losses. The Department of Justice anticipates authorizing compensation for more victims in the coming months. Petitions are accepted on an ongoing basis and potential victims who have not applied for compensation will be provided the opportunity to apply this year.
“This third distribution of funds from the Western Union forfeiture demonstrates the Department of Justice’s continued commitment to compensate and serve justice to victims, many of whom suffered immense losses from this fraud scheme,” said Deputy Assistant Attorney General Kevin O. Driscoll of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “Divesting criminals of ill-gotten gains and returning those funds to victims are the primary goals of the Asset Forfeiture Program, which has provided over $10 billion in forfeited funds to victims over the last two decades.”
“Since 2001, our office, in conjunction with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, has been at the forefront of investigating and prosecuting cross-border frauds where global money services companies such as Western Union facilitate fraud by transferring millions of dollars overseas into the pockets of international fraudsters,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Bruce D. Brandler for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. “The historic 2017 deferred prosecution agreement with Western Union, and the payments to thousands of victims to compensate them for their losses, demonstrates our commitment to hold all responsible parties accountable and to make all victims whole. I want to thank all the prosecutors and agents who continue to work tirelessly on behalf of the victims.”