What we learned from former US attorney in Trump estate search
Local 4 talked to an expert to contextualize what federal agents took out of Mar-a-Lago. To put into context exactly what federal agents took out and whether the situation is an argument of paperwork or something far more serious, we spoke with former United States Attorney Matthew Schneider.
Rory Gamble, Who Led UAW Through Scandal, Pandemic, Retires
Roy Gamble, 65, became acting president in November of 2019 just after a contentious 40-day strike against General Motors, and in the middle of a wide-ranging federal probe of bribery and embezzlement by top union officials.detroit.cbslocal.com
Central Michigan University suspends third employee in relation to misconduct investigation
MOUNT PLEASANT, MI - Central Michigan University has suspended a third employee in its investigation into a relationship with a Lansing public relations firm under fire after misconduct allegations against its owner. CMU spokeswoman Heather Smith confirmed the suspension Monday, April 19, but said the university has no further information to share. UPDATE: CMU suspends staff, launches investigation after students it sent to Lansing PR firm report sexual harassmentThe university hired former U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider to investigate its connections with Vanguard. Though Schneider attended high school with Bucholz, CMU previously affirmed its comfort with him running the investigation. Read more:CMU ‘very comfortable’ with investigator, despite high school connection to Lansing PR firm ownerCMU suspends staff, launches investigation after students it sent to Lansing PR firm report sexual harassmentMichigan Press Association suspends CMU staffer amid investigation into Lansing PR firmmlive.com
CMU ‘very comfortable’ with investigator, despite high school connection to Lansing PR firm owner
Central Michigan University is “very comfortable” with hiring former U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider to conduct an independent investigation of the university’s sending students to a Lansing public relations firm despite having gone to high school with its owner, a spokesperson said Thursday. Related: CMU hires former U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider to investigate pipeline of students to Lansing firmThe university stood by the decision after the Detroit Free Press reported both attended Frankenmuth High School. “We feel very comfortable with Matthew Schneider leading the independent investigation. Former employees have described Bucholz as an unpredictable boss who created a toxic work environment and at times sexually harassed the predominantly young, female employees and interns at Vanguard Public Affairs. More on MLive:CMU hires former U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider to investigate pipeline of students to Lansing firmCMU suspends staff, launches investigation after students it sent to Lansing PR firm report sexual harassmentMichigan Press Association suspends CMU staffer amid investigation into Lansing PR firmmlive.com
CMU hires former U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider to investigate pipeline of students to Lansing firm
Central Michigan University has retained former U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider to conduct an investigation after sexual harassment allegations at a firm the university sent students to came to light last week. For years, the university sent him a steady stream of female interns, and the firm employed many recent graduates. Now, Schneider will investigate whether members of the university community knew about Bucholz’s behavior before the stories broke. In subsequent news reports, former employees of the firm identified unpredictable behavior from Bucholz and situations that made them uncomfortable. Schneider, now a private attorney with Honigman, is a former U.S. Attorney and also previously worked as chief legal counsel under former Attorney General Bill Schuette.mlive.com
Whitmer said separation agreements like Robert Gordon’s are ‘used often.’ In state government, they’re not.
“Separation agreements... are used often in the public and private sector when someone in a leadership position leaves an organization. But according to experts and state records, separation agreements and severance pay for high-ranking state leaders have not been commonly used in Michigan state government or in governments generally. People familiar with the state’s personnel processes weren’t surprised the records requests didn’t turn up separation agreements or severance pay. John Engler, said he did not recall any separation agreements in that administration. He said separation agreements came across his desk, but he doesn’t specifically recall any for high-level officials.mlive.com
3 Metro Detroiters accused of 95 fraudulent unemployment claims as thousands struggle to get benefits
Federal officials said the two filed at least 66 fraudulent Michigan unemployment insurance benefits claims, causing a loss of more than $150,000. “As I have said before, those who steal unemployment benefits steal from all of us. Court records show they had the fraudulent benefits deposited into a variety of bank accounts, including some connected to prepaid debit cards. Officials said Armstrong has filed fraudulent applications for unemployment insurance benefits on behalf of people in Michigan, California and Pennsylvania. “The UIA remains committed to working closely with all of our federal and state partners on the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Fraud Task Force to bring unemployment fraud cases to justice.”
Troy investor accused of fraud spent $19M of clients’ money on failed lottery scheme
TROY, MI – A Michigan investor is accused of spending $19 million of other people’s money in a scheme that involved a fraudulent real estate company and the Michigan Lottery. Viktor Gjonaj, 43, of Troy was charged in federal court with one count of wire fraud, U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider announced on Thursday. By 2017, Gjonaj began losing more money than he won and more money than he could afford to lose. By early 2019, Gjonaj was betting over $1 million a week on Michigan Lottery games using money fraudulently obtained from victims. “The defendant’s lies have caught up with him and he will now face the consequences of his fraudulent scheme.”mlive.com
Ex-Macomb County Prosecutor Smith pleads guilty to obstruction in embezzlement scheme
Macomb County Prosecutor's OfficeFormer Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith. At the time, Smith said he had “absolute confidence” that he would be exonerated Smith is scheduled to be sentenced on April 27. Smith’s case is that kind of case. I deeply regret my actions and the shame I brought to my wife, my children, the office I spent almost 30 years working for and the people of Macomb County. "As part of his guilty plea, Smith has agreed to forfeit the nearly $70,000 he stole from his campaign funds.metrotimes.com
Former Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith faces 21 months in federal prison
MOUNT CLEMENS, Mich. – Former Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith‘s long-held political sway quickly diminished in 2019 when Michigan State Police troopers raided his office and home for records. Nearly two years later, Smith admitted in a virtual hearing Wednesday to stealing over $74,000 from his campaign fund through two different fraud schemes, officials said. Read: Former Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith pleads guilty to obstruction of justice, faces prison timeFederal investigators claim Smith brought employees into a back stairwell inside the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office and worked to steer the investigation away from him. I accept my punishment”“Some may view Smith’s conviction as a reason to lack confidence in our elected officials or our prosecutors. Smith’s case is that kind of case.
Former Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith pleads guilty to obstruction of justice, faces prison time
MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. – Former Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith is facing a federal prison sentence after he admitted to stealing over $74,000 from his campaign fund through two different fraud schemes, officials said. Smith, 53, of Macomb Township, pleaded guilty Wednesday (Jan. 27) to one count of obstruction of justice. AdAs part of the plea, Smith admitted to stealing over $74,000 from his campaign fund through two different fraud schemes. MORE: Eric Smith accused of turning Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office into criminal enterpriseIn one scheme, Smith lied and said he was using funds to pay rent on office space for his re-election efforts, authorities said. In the second scheme, Smith wrote a check for $20,000 from the campaign fund to an assistant Macomb County prosecutor for “consulting” work, according to authorities.
Stellantis agrees to $30 million fine to settle federal corruption probe of Fiat Chrysler
UAW President Rory Gamble (left) and U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider announce a settlement agreement to end a years-long corruption investigation into the union on Dec. 14, 2020 in Detroit. Stellantis, formerly Fiat Chrysler, has agreed to pay $30 million as part of a plea deal to settle a criminal investigation into collusion and bribery of union officials by former executives of the company's North American operations. The deal, which was announced Wednesday by federal prosecutors in Detroit, ends a multiyear federal probe into Fiat Chrysler and the United Auto Workers union. Prosecutors announced a separate plea deal last month with the UAW. It's unclear at this time when Stellantis will pay the fine as the agreement remains subject to U.S. federal court approval.cnbc.com
Extended pause of winter contact sports in Michigan draws vocal opposition
It said many student-athletes have started to cross state lines to play or are losing faith they’ll ever play again. “They are doing what you asked them to do, but it’s been 10 months since we’ve played basketball in our state ... A petition is also circulating with more than 25,000 signatures to get the governor to restart contact sports. On Monday, a petition was started by group calling themselves a coalition of Michigan athletes asking for 5,000 signatures to show support for lifting the 2-week pause. “The opposition, despair, and anger to the continuing suspension of winter ‘contact’ sports is rapidly growing in the city and across the state.
Marine Corps Civilian Employee Pleads Guilty to Assaulting His Spouse
A civilian employee working for the U.S. Marine Corps Community Association pleaded guilty today to assaulting his spouse while working in Iwakuni, Japan. Jason Beltran, 35, a former U.S. Marine most recently residing in Flushing, Michigan, pleaded guilty to a single count of assault of a spouse resulting in substantial bodily injury. Beltran entered his plea before U.S. District Judge Nancy G. Edmunds in the U.S. District Court in Detroit, Michigan. According to the admissions made in connection with his plea, Beltran was an active duty U.S. Marine stationed in Iwakuni, until he was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps in 2011. Thereafter, Beltran was hired by the U.S. Marine Corps Community Services to work as a library technician at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni.justice.gov
U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider resigns; Saima Mohsin to take over
Schneider will be joining a private law firm based in DetroitDETROIT — United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan Matthew Schneider has submitted a resignation letter to President Biden, shortly after Biden was sworn in. Saima Mohsin, who has served as the first assistant United States Attorney since March 2018, will be assuming the position of acting United States Attorney. “It has been the honor of my lifetime to serve the people of Eastern Michigan, alongside the incredibly hard-working team in the U.S. Attorney’s Office,” Schneider said. And, as the first woman, immigrant, Muslim United States Attorney in American history, her service is truly historic. “It is a great honor to serve the citizens of the Eastern District of Michigan as acting United States Attorney,” she said.arabamericannews.com
Federal prosecutor Schneider resigns as Trump leaves office, will join private law firm based in Detroit
DETROIT – United States Attorney Matthew Schneider announced on Thursday that he has resigned from his position. Saima Mohsin will be assuming the position of Acting United States Attorney. And, as the first woman, immigrant, Muslim United States Attorney in American history, her service is truly historic. Saima will be an outstanding representative and defender of our community as the Acting United States Attorney. It is a great honor to serve the citizens of the Eastern District of Michigan as Acting United States Attorney.
U.S. Attorney Schneider, a Trump appointee, is resigning after President Biden takes office
He replaced Barbara McQuade, who was appointed by President Barack Obama.Saima Moshin, a career prosecutor, will serve as acting U.S. attorney until Biden appoints a permanent replacement.“It is a great honor to serve the citizens of the Eastern District of Michigan as Acting United States Attorney,” Moshin said. “I am deeply committed to fulfilling our core mission to faithfully enforce the law and seek justice for all.”During his tenure, Schneider prosecuted high-profile cases, including the alleged plot to kidnap Gov. “Saima is a dynamic trial lawyer and a talented manager. And, as the first woman, immigrant, Muslim United States Attorney in American history, her service is truly historic. Saima will be an outstanding representative and defender of our community as the Acting United States Attorney.”metrotimes.com
Reports: FBI warns of possible armed protests at 50 state Capitols starting Jan. 16
FILE - Trump supporters use their cell phones to record events as they gather outside the Capitol, Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington as Congress prepares to affirm President-elect Joe Biden's victory. Many in the mob that ransacked the Capitol did so while livestreaming, posting on Facebook and taking selfies, turning the Capitol into a theater of real-time far-right propaganda. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)A memo from the FBI to law enforcement agencies across the United States is warning of possible armed protests at all 50 state Capitols starting Jan. 16, several outlets are reporting Monday. U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider, whose jurisdiction covers a 34-county area including metropolitan Detroit, said investigators will review video footage and other evidence. Related: State capitols step up security amid new safety concerns
Nightside Report Jan. 8, 2021: What customers need to know about Loves Furniture’s bankruptcy filing, Family in shock after woman killed in triple shooting on Detroit’s west side
View of Detroit from the Windsor sky camera on Jan. 8, 2021 at 9:18 p.m.What customers need to know about Loves Furniture’s bankruptcy filingDETROIT – Customers of Loves Furniture, the company that took over many closed Art Van Furniture locations, are concerned after the company filed for bankruptcy. Whitmer encourages Michigan public schools to reopen for in-person learning by March 1Gov. Gretchen Whitmer “strongly encouraged” Michigan public schools to reopen for in-person learning by the beginning of March. Public schools in Michigan were shut down during the fall due to a surge in COVID-19 cases. Their buildings have been closed for about two months -- since the state reported thousands of COVID-19 cases per day in November.
FBI, Michigan federal prosecutor seek tips in deadly siege on US Capitol Building
DETROIT – Multiple Michigan residents have been taken into custody after Wednesday’s deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol Building with more arrests likely to come. U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider said if they crossed state lines with intent to riot, they will be charged. RELATED: Several Michigan residents charged after deadly siege on US Capitol BuildingThe FBI has been receiving many tips from residents who are scared and want to help. Nearly everyone who went into the Capitol Building was caught on camera and authorities are looking to identify them. RELATED: Top federal prosecutor in Michigan seeks tips on Capitol mob“If you think about the U.S. Capitol, there are cameras all over the place,” Schneider said.
Morning Briefing Jan. 8, 2021: Top federal prosecutor in Michigan seeks tips on Capitol mob, Trump finally concedes, DeVos resigns
FILE - In this June 14, 2018, file photo, the FBI seal is seen before a news conference at FBI headquarters in Washington. U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider, whose jurisdiction covers a 34-county area including metropolitan Detroit, said investigators will review video footage and other evidence. “A new administration will be inaugurated on Jan. 20,” Trump said in the video. In a resignation letter Thursday, DeVos blamed President Donald Trump for inflaming tensions in the violent assault on the seat of the nation’s democracy. The number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in Michigan has risen to 512,751 as of Thursday, including 13,094 deaths, state officials report.
Top federal prosecutor in Michigan seeks tips on Capitol mob
Full Screen Full Screen 1 / 6 Trump supporters try to break through a police barrier, Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, at the Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)Those types of crimes will be prosecuted by the U.S. attorney for Washington, D.C., Schneider said. Related: Several Michigan residents charged after deadly siege on US Capitol Building“It looks like the acts took place in Washington, D.C. But it's under review right now — what's the connection of the people in D.C. to the people in Michigan? We didn't encourage anybody to storm the Capitol, and I don't know any of the people that are involved with storming the Capitol."
Woman faces federal charges for sending threats, photo of bloody corpse to Wayne County canvasser
A New Hampshire woman is facing federal charges for allegedly threatening the chair of the Wayne County Board of Canvassers through a series of text messages that included graphic photos of a mutilated corpse. Both Republicans agreed to vote to certify results in exchange for an audit of Wayne County results, but Palmer later signed an affidavit saying she wanted to rescind her vote. Related: Wayne County canvassers, after last-minute reversal, certified election results. A criminal complaint and FBI affidavit released by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan show Palmer faced harassment one day after the Wayne County Board of Canvassers meeting. It leads to the senseless threats we’re seeing in allegations like this today.”READ MORE:Wayne County canvasser explains her opposition to certifying election resultsWayne County Republican canvassers reverse course, vote to certify election resultsmlive.com
23-year-old woman charged with making violent threats against Wayne County canvasser
DETROIT – A 23-year-old woman living in Olivet, Michigan was arrested and will be charged with sending threatening messages to Monica Palmer, the chair of the Wayne County Board of Canvassers. Jones then sent Palmer two graphic photographs of a bloody, naked, mutilated, dead woman lying on the ground. Immediately following, Jones sent Palmer a photograph of Palmer’s minor daughter. United States Attorney Matthew SchneiderAccording to the affidavit, Jones knowingly and willfully sent violent threats to Palmer. Officials said she admitted to creating a TextMe account to send threatening messages to Palmer.
United Auto Workers union settles civil charges in corruption probe with Justice Department
Striking United Auto Workers members and supporters attend a speech by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders outside General Motors' Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly plant on Sept. 25, 2019 in Detroit. DETROIT — Federal prosecutors plan to announce Monday measures to reform the United Auto Workers as part of a proposed civil settlement with the Justice Department in its multiyear corruption probe into the prominent American union. U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider and UAW President Rory Gamble are scheduled to speak at a joint news conference in Detroit where prosecutors said they will announce details of the deal. Gamble and Schneider have previously discussed settlements to reform the union, including possibly using an independent monitor. The Detroit News previously reported the Justice Department proposed subjecting the UAW to 10 years of federal oversight, one of the longest periods of federal supervision in recent history.cnbc.com
UAW agrees to monitor, voting changes after corruption probe
FILE - In this Nov. 6, 2019, file photo, United Auto Workers union President Rory Gamble answers questions in Southfield, Mich. But he said that current UAW President Rory Gamble is not a target of the investigation. The probe has led to 11 convictions of union members, including two former presidents. Currently the union’s members vote on delegates to a convention, who then vote on a president. Former UAW President Dennis Williams in September pleaded guilty in the government’s investigation, and his successor as president, Gary Jones, pleaded guilty in June.
UAW agrees to monitor, voting changes after corruption probe
But he said that current UAW President Rory Gamble is not a target of the investigation. The probe has led to 11 convictions of union members, including two former presidents. Currently the union’s members vote on delegates to a convention, who then vote on a president. Former UAW President Dennis Williams in September pleaded guilty in the government’s investigation, and his successor as president, Gary Jones, pleaded guilty in June. Eleven union officials and a late official’s spouse have pleaded guilty since 2017, although not all the crimes were connected.
UAW, US Attorney Reach Deal To Reform Union After Scandal
But it’s expected to include an independent monitor and a change in the way union officials are elected. U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider, who has called for the reforms, and current UAW President Rory Gamble are scheduled to attend Monday’s announcement. In June, Schneider and Gamble discussed a monitor to make sure union corruption is rooted out for good. Former UAW President Dennis Williams in September pleaded guilty in the government’s investigation, and his successor as president, Gary Jones, pleaded guilty in June. Eleven union officials and a late official’s spouse have pleaded guilty since 2017, although not all the crimes were connected.detroit.cbslocal.com
Man pleads guilty to sex trafficking teen girl at Detroit motel
DETROIT – An undercover operation was launched to rescue a teenage girl who was being sold for sex in a motel room. Court documents reveal the man used several phones to advertise the teenage girl, communicate with her and capture and share explicit videos of her. A report by the Human Trafficking Institute said Michigan ranks eighth in the nation for the number of defendants convicted of human trafficking. Across the country in 2019, only six percent of all human trafficking cases being prosecuted were forced labor cases. READ: Stop the Trafficking: Unveiling the truth behind human traffickingView the Michigan summary from the 2019 federal human trafficking report below:View the entire 2019 federal human trafficking report below:
Michigan AG to GOP on voter fraud evidence: ‘Put up or shut up’
DETROIT – One day after Rudy Giuliani and several witnesses pushed voter fraud conspiracy theories before the Michigan House Oversight Committee, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel says it’s time to “put up or shut up” in regards to offering actual evidence. Despite Republicans’ questioning of vote counting in the city, there is no evidence to show such a discrepancy. Michigan’s Attorney General, who has noted the fact that no evidence has been submitted to law enforcement to support any voter fraud claims, again called for Republicans to deliver the evidence -- or to stop making claims. — Dana Nessel (@dananessel) December 3, 2020In November, AG Nessel, responding to a wild claim by former state senator Patrick Colbeck, said Colbeck never filed any complaint of election fraud, despite claiming to have evidence. AG Barr: No evidence of voter fraud that’d change election outcome
Nessel slams Michigan Republicans over baseless election claims: 'Put up or shut up'
Michigan Attorney General's OfficeAttorney General Dana Nessel. Refresher: Matthew Schneider, US Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, which has Detroit within its jurisdiction, is a Trump appointee who previously served as Chief Deputy under AG Bill Schuette. Wondering why @MIGOPChair doesn’t trust him to handle an investigation? — Dana Nessel (@dananessel) December 3, 2020Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel lashed out at Michigan Republicans on Thursday for continuing to give voice to conspiracy theorists who are undermining the state’s democratic system by spewing baseless allegations of election fraud.“At long last, put up or shut up,” Nessel tweeted.Nessel’s string of scalding tweets comes a day after the Republican-controlled House Oversight Committee held a hearing in which President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani was given the floor to level what she described as “baseless, debunked attacks on our elections.”During the hearing, witnesses trashed Detroit with unfounded, delusional claims of election misdeeds.“You have embarrassed our state and defamed Michigan’s most populous city,” Nessel tweeted.metrotimes.com
Metro Detroit doctors accused of profiting off fake medical diagnoses to help immigrants obtain citizenship
DETROIT – A psychologist and medical doctor were charged in a criminal complaint for their alleged role in a scheme to create fake medical diagnoses to help immigrants fraudulently obtain their U.S. citizenship, announced United States Attorney Matthew Schneider. Van Horn typically received $500 each time she created the fake diagnosis and medical records. Van Horn asked how the witness was feeling, along with other basic questions a doctor typically asks a patient. Director of Field Operations for United States Customs and Border Protection, Christopher Perry, discussed allegations made against the two doctors. Perry stated, “Medical professionals are in a position of trust, profiting off of fake medical diagnoses to help others fraudulently obtain citizenship is a betrayal of that trust.
Former University of Michigan violin professor charged with transporting minor girl across state lines
ANN ARBOR, MI — A former University of Michigan professor could be facing up to 15 years in prison after being charged with two counts of transporting a minor girl across state lines with the intent to engage in sexual conduct. Shipps was employed by the UM School of Music, Theatre and Dance as a violin professor. Shipps met with these young girls both inside and outside of the State of Michigan. UM violin professor accused of sexual misconductMLive does not usually name victims in sexual assault or misconduct cases, but Maureen O’Boyle gave permission when she was interviewed for a story in December 2018. READ MORE:University of Michigan, Ohio State University competing in 39th annual blood drive2-week stay-in-place order issued by health department for University of Michigan studentsStudents voice mental health concerns as universities cancel spring breaksmlive.com
Detroit couple charged with stealing unemployment money after conspiring with worker
Richardson, 25, and Taylor, 27, allegedly conspired with Brandi Hawkins, a former Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency employee who was indicted on federal theft and bribery charges in July. Richardson and Taylor, both of Detroit, were charged Tuesday with wire fraud. They allegedly defrauded $138,000 in state and federal unemployment dollars, spending it on luxury vehicles, travel, gambling and custom jewelry, per investigators. Authorities found texts and WhatsApp messages between Hawkins and Taylor, with Hawkins sending photos showing she was manually fixing the accounts. Richardson and Taylor were just two of the people Hawkins allegedly conspired with.mlive.com
WATCH: Michigan AG, FBI discuss foiled militia plan to kidnap Gov. Whitmer
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel and individuals from other agencies across the state spoke regarding an alleged militia plan to kidnap Gov. More: 6 accused in militia plan to kidnap Gov. Whitmer as hostage, overthrow Michigan government, feds sayMichigan State Police Col. Joseph Casper is expected to be in attendance. So is Andrew Birge, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Michigan and Matthew Schneider, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan. Watch in the video player above
Statement from Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband and Michigan U.S. Attorneys on Michigan Supreme Court Ruling Striking Down Governor Whitmer’s Pandemic-Related Orders
“The United States Constitution guarantees a republican form of government to every state in our free country. Such cooperation may also help identify any potential constitutional concerns with existing and any future orders. Further, and perhaps most importantly, working with the state legislature will affirm that Michigan and its public officials remain committed to the ‘Republican Form of Government’ mandated by the United States Constitution. Matthew Schneider, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, and Assistant Attorney General Dreiband, are overseeing the Justice Department’s effort to monitor state and local policies relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. 1:20-00360 and additional information about the department’s May 29 statement of interest can be found here: https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/department-justice-files-statement-interest-support-businesses-suffering-arbitrary-andjustice.gov
Feds drop case against man they say threatened to steal Coast Guard helicopter to ‘shoot up local hospital’
BAY CITY, MI — Federal authorities have dismissed their case against an Omer man they had alleged threatened to steal a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter as a plan to attack a hospital and “release” those receiving treatment for coronavirus. Dispatchers notified Coast Guard personnel and area police agencies, while also providing McFadden’s criminal history of brandishing weapons and resisting police, the affidavit states. Michigan State Police troopers, Bay County Sheriff’s deputies, and Hampton Township and Essexville public safety officers converged in the Speedway parking lot. McFadden remains in custody at the Bay County Jail as of Wednesday. Read more:Man accused of threatening to steal Coast Guard helicopter faces federal chargeOmer man threatened to shoot up hospital, ram Coast Guard gate to steal helicopter, police say1,000 acres of corn in Bay County sabotaged to kill cows, police saymlive.com
Michigan police working with feds to combat illegal firearms, violent crime
DETROIT – Police in Michigan are working with federal officials to take violent offenders off the street and confiscate illegal guns. Police officers and federal officials are finding illegal guns on many more people. “We don’t want them there if they are illegal,” Schneider said. Nobody would.”As part of Operation Legend, federal officials plan to target violence in America’s most violent cities. Schneider said the reality is that since the expansion of the operation was announced over the summer, local police are working with feds to arrest violent offenders.
Michigan officials worried about people threatening, intimidating each other during contentious election
Officials in Michigan are reminding residents it’s a crime to threaten or intimidate people over their right to vote, even ahead of what’s expected to be a very contentious election. “You know what we have is a very contentious election coming up,” U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider said. “It is a federal crime to interfere with somebody’s right to vote.”Schneider spoke with the Local 4 Defenders just 36 days before the presidential election. “When people are angry, they take to Facebook.”He said officials are looking for those cases so they can bring people to justice. Arguing over politics is an American tradition and protected by the First Amendment, but threatening people to keep them from voting is a crime, Schneider said.
Man who injured ICE agent during immigration arrest in Michigan gets 18 month prison sentence
According to court records, Ortega-Escudero assaulted a federal officer during an immigration arrest on February 2. Following a foot pursuit, Ortega-Escudero again fought with an ICE agent and attempted to remove the agent’s firearm. The ICE agent was physically injured in the attack. Ortega-Escudero’s case is just one of the many immigration enforcement cases being prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office. “An assault on a law enforcement officer is unobjectionable, and this individual, illegally present in the U.S., will now face time for his actions.
Michigan man sentenced in scheme to defraud Amtrak while in possession of firearms, explosives and narcotics
Newby was sentenced by United States District Judge Gershwin Drain. According to court records, from March 2018 through January 2019, Newby fraudulently obtained credit card information for more than 1,100 credit card holders. Newby used the stolen credit card information to purchase Amtrak tickets online. After purchasing the tickets, Newby would then cancel the Amtrak tickets and receive vouchers for the value of those tickets from Amtrak. Newby then advertised and sold the Amtrak vouchers to unwitting buyers on eBay at a fraction of the cost.
Man pleads guilty to threatening Taylor woman due to her race
DETROIT – Ronald Wyatt, 22, pleaded guilty Wednesday to intentionally threatening physical harm to a Taylor woman to obstruct her free exercise of religion. The Department of Justice said Wyatt admitted he targeted the woman because her race. “Although the First Amendment protects free speech, it doesn’t give anyone the right to obstruct the free exercise of religious beliefs by threatening violence or bodily harm. Prosecuting those who violate the civil rights of Michigan citizens is some of the most important work we do. This plea today is the first step towards justice for this innocent victim.”Wyatt faces up to a year in prison.
Michigan sextortion survivors speak out in community webinar
The problem is that predators are too, and experts are warning parents about the dangers of online predators. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit held a webinar Friday with sextortion survivors, their parents, experts and law enforcement officials. “Sextortion” is a type of online child exploitation. Blockers and filters are another way to prevent your child from harmful content and predators lurking online. It’s the predator’s fault, but we always have to make sure that’s always perfectly known,” Schneider said.
Ex-Macomb County prosecutor Eric Smith faces up to 21 months in jail following guilty plea
Former Macomb County prosecutor Eric Smith is no stranger to a courtroom, but Friday he was just another defendant. United States Attorney Matthew Schneider said the FBI had been investigating Smith for more than a year. “Our state has seen a number of public officials who have sworn to uphold their oaths and then they violated that,” Schneider said. Smith was given a $10,000 unsecured bond, he can’t leave the state without approval and has to surrender his CPL. He faces up to 21 months in custody and a $250,000 dollar fine.
Former Macomb County prosecutor Eric Smith pleads guilty to obstruction of justice
Former Macomb County prosecutor Eric Smith faced a federal judge Friday in connection to an alleged embezzlement scheme. Smith said he had told three people -- two assistant prosecutors and a friend -- to lie about he use of campaign funds. Smith faces up to 20 years in prison, but will likely serve less than two years on the federal charge. He is also facing charges of embezzlement and racketeering for his spending of $600,000 from an obscure Macomb County forfeiture fund. Of that $20,000, Smith gave the consultant $5,000 and kept the remaining $15,000, which he used for his own personal use.
Feds say Macomb County prosecutor had secret stairwell talk, asked others to lie to FBI about scheme
Federal officials said Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith had a secret talk in a stairwell, checked to make sure associates weren’t recording him on cellphones and asked employees to lie to FBI agents in an attempt to cover up how he was using thousands of dollars' worth of campaign funds.
Corruption scandal, COVID-19 pandemic leave UAW at crossroads on Labor Day
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. Labor Day is usually a day for the United Auto Workers union to flex its muscles as one of the largest labor unions in the country, but with the ongoing corruption scandal and the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, this year is very different. This year, the UAW is facing a crossroads on Labor Day. RELATED: Ex-UAW President Gary Jones pleads guilty in corruption caseThe traditional Labor Day Parade didnt happen Monday because the virus forced a cancelation. The UAW is going to close the National Training Center in Warren and one in Kokomo, Indiana. The union negotiated the closures in the UAW national contract last year as part of the federal investigation.
Flashpoint 9/6/20: US attorney Matthew Schneider weighs in on pressing issues facing region
DETROIT From Operation Legend to corruption surrounding the United Auto Workers to coronavirus aid fraud, US Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, Matthew Schneider, has worked on high profile cases. On Sunday, he will make an appearance on Flashpoint to discuss some of the latest issues making headlines. There will also be a discussion on how the pandemic has impacted development in Detroit. Segment OneUS Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, Matthew Schneider. Segment ThreeFlashpoint host Devin Scillian wraps up this weeks episode.
Novi man charged in connection with federal wire fraud scheme
A Novi man was arrested and charged in a wire fraud scheme involving $3.1 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans. According to the U.S. Attorneys Office Eastern District of Michigan, 44-year-old Antonio George is charged in a criminal complaint with one count of wire fraud. The PPP loan is guaranteed by Small Business Administration under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES Act). Small businesses across Michigan have received loans from the Paycheck Protection Program, and these loans have kept these businesses alive, said U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider in the release. Every dollar stolen from the program is a dollar stolen from struggling businesses in need.
Former UAW president Dennis Williams is 15th person charged in corruption case
Former UAW president Dennis Williams rose to prominence within the union, starting as secretary-treasurer in 2013. He is the 15th person charged the UAW corruption investigation -- a list that includes former president Gary Jones. RELATED: Ex-UAW President Gary Jones pleads guilty in corruption caseIt was a year ago that the FBI raided Jones home in Canton and went into Williams home in California. Williams allegedly had taken more that $71,000 in union money. Jones was Williams choice and though he was elected it was baked into the cake before any convention.
Michigan UIA employee, Detroit woman charged in $1.8M unemployment scam
Two people, including an employee of the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency, have been charged for their alleged role in a $1.8 million unemployment insurance fraud scheme. His duties included reviewing, processing and verifying the legitimacy of unemployment insurance claims. Beginning in May, 2020, it is alleged that Rose used his insider access to release payment on hundreds of fraudulent claims. Rose attempted to override another $761,000 in fraudulent unemployment claims, but the State was able to prevent payment on those additional claims. The investigation is being conducted jointly by the Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General, the United States Secret Service, and the Unemployment Insurance Agency, Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity.
Owner of Michigan Payroll Tax Services Firm Charged With Employment Tax Fraud
According to the indictment, Dale Thrush was the owner and operator of 402 N. Mission St. LLC (Mission Street), a Mount Pleasant, Michigan, company that provided payroll tax services to employers, including withholding taxes and forwarding the funds due to the IRS. The indictment alleges that from 2014 through 2016, Thrush withheld payroll taxes from Mission Street employees paychecks, but only paid a portion of the funds due to the IRS. Instead, Thrush allegedly used nearly $400,000 from Mission Streets payroll account, including the withheld taxes, to cover expenses for his other businesses and to fund remodeling and construction costs for his wifes business. It is also alleged that from 2013 through 2016, Thrush did not file personal tax returns reporting the income he earned from his businesses. Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts may be found on the divisions website.justice.gov
Operation Legend: What federal agents will be focusing on in Detroit
DETROIT – US Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, Matthew Schneider spoke Wednesday about the plan to bring bring federal agents to Detroit. “Let me be clear: there are no federal troops coming to Detroit or Michigan to interfere with protesters,” Schneider said. The city of Detroit will be getting 44 ATF agents and 12 FBI agents -- some with permanent jobs, some temporary. RELATED: ‘Operation Legend’ to bring federal agents to Detroit: Here’s what that will look likeIn many cases, children are getting caught in the crossfire. RELATED: Surge of federal agents leaves many questions unanswered
Operation Legend: What federal agents will be focusing on in Detroit
Operation Legend: What federal agents will be focusing on in DetroitPublished: July 29, 2020, 5:25 pmUS Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, Matthew Schneider, spoke Wednesday about the plan to bring bring federal agents to Detroit.
LIVE STREAM: US Attorney to discuss plan to bring federal agents to Detroit
DETROIT – US officials will detail expanded plans to bring federal agents to Detroit during a news conference on Wednesday morning. US Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan, Matthew Schneider, will provide details on the plan, which was originally announced by President Trump last week. Who: United States Attorney Matthew Schneider, along with ATF Special Agent in Charge James Deir, FBI Special Agent in Charge Steven D’Antuono, Assistant Special Agent in Charge Ken Kleinschmidt, and United States Marshal Owen Cypher. The federal agents brought in is phase two of “Operation Relentless Pursuit,” and there have been other agents in the city working alongside police for months. RELATED: Surge of federal agents leaves many questions unanswered
Local 4 News at 5 -- July 29, 2020
Heres whats coming up on Local 4 News at 5:Operation Legend: What it means for our streetsU.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider said federal forces are coming to Detroit to tackle an alarming rise in gun crimes. Those agents are going to be focusing on pockets of the city that are seeing the worst of it.
Detroit woman charged in $2 million unemployment fraud scheme
DETROIT – A Detroit woman has been charged for her alleged role in a multi-million dollar unemployment insurance fraud scheme, according to officials. View more Detroit crime reports hereBrandi Hawkins, 39, was a contract employee for the State of Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency. She was involved in the reviewing, processing and verifying the legitimacy of unemployment insurance claims. More than $2,000,000 of federal and state funds intended for unemployment assistance during the pandemic were fraudulently released. READ: Michigan investigating if new hires are stealing from Unemployment Insurance AgencyMore than $200,000 in cash was found at her residence by police.
U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider, UAW President Rory Gamble meet to discuss UAW reform
DETROIT Members of the United Auto Workers met with federal prosecutors on Tuesday in the first step to bring reform to the union. The meeting was between U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider and UAW President Rory Gamble. During the meeting, Gamble and UAW representatives detailed reform measures that Gamble and the International Executive Board put in place for the union. READ: Former UAW President Gary Jones pleads guilty, faces up to 57 months in prisonThe Justice Department seeks genuine and sincere reform of the UAW so as to provide the best possible representation for its members, said United States Attorney Matthew Schneider. Todays discussion was productive and both the U.S. Attorney and I have the same goal for the UAW International Union.
UAW, prosecutor consider a monitor for avoiding corruption
DETROIT A federal prosecutor and the United Auto Workers president are looking at using an independent monitor to make sure that a wide-ranging union corruption scandal never happens again. The monitor was one option discussed during a two-hour meeting Tuesday between UAW President Rory Gamble and Matthew Schneider, the U.S. Attorney in Detroit, according to a joint statement. Ten union officials have pleaded guilty in the scandal, with some spending thousands in union money for golf, lodging and fancy meals. An independent monitor would give union members the assurance of reforms so as to reduce the possibility of a recurrence of corruption, the statement said. Among the union officials to plead guilty is former President Gary Jones, who was accused of conspiring with UAW cronies to embezzle more than $1 million.
Auto workers chief, prosecutor to discuss reforming union
FILE - In this March 11, 2019 file photo, Gary Jones, president of the United Auto Workers union addresses delegates to the union's bargaining convention in Detroit. An expected guilty plea to corruption charges by former United Auto Workers President Gary Jones has been delayed due to the coronavirus and traveling concerns. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio, File)DETROIT The head of the United Auto Workers will meet this month with the U.S. attorney in Detroit to discuss potential changes for the union following a wide-ranging corruption probe. Ten union officials and a late officials spouse have pleaded guilty since 2017, including former President Gary Jones. In a joint statement Monday, the union and Schneider said current UAW President Rory Gamble will meet with Schneider June 30 in Detroit to start negotiations on changes for the union.
Michigan Sen. Peter Lucido seeks investigation into placing COVID-19 patients at nursing homes
LANSING, Mich. Republican Sen. Peter J. Lucido on Monday called for an investigation into Gov. READ MORE: Michigans policy of housing COVID-19 nursing home patients with uninfected patients comes under scrutinyNursing homes are not hospitals, and no one expects them to be. Theyre not equipped or prepared to handle the type of work or administer the type of care that hospitals provide. Yet, somehow, knowing this, someone decided that people sick with COVID-19 should be sent into nursing homes and kept there. It was completely illogical and further threatened the health of already vulnerable people residing at nursing home facilities as well as their caregivers.
Federal takeover of United Auto Workers union remains an option as corruption probe grows
U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider speaks during a news conference March 6, 2020 to discuss charges against former UAW President Gary Jones in Detroit. A takeover of the United Auto Workers union by the U.S. government to eliminate a "culture of corruption and greed" remains an option, according to federal officials. While the UAW has historically supported Democrats, President Donald Trump has touted the support of blue-collar workers in unions such as the UAW. "That has worked well for the Teamsters," Schneider said Thursday during a news conference in Detroit to discuss unsealed charges against ex-UAW President Gary Jones. The multiyear probe has already led to convictions of 13 others, including 10 people affiliated with the union and three Fiat Chrysler executives.cnbc.com
Patient Recruiter Sentenced to Prison for Role in More than $1 Million Illegal Kickback Conspiracy
A patient recruiter was sentenced to 60 months in prison yesterday for receiving more than $1 million in illegal kickback payments from numerous home health agencies from around the country in exchange for providing information on Medicare beneficiaries to home health agencies, who then used that information to submit fraudulent claims to Medicare. Dominic Trumbo, 45, of Lexington, Kentucky, was sentenced by Chief U.S. District Judge Denise Page Hood of the Eastern District of Michigan, who also ordered Trumbo to pay $1,010,552 in restitution and forfeit $203,300. Trumbo then sold the Medicare beneficiary information to home health agencies in exchange for illegal kickback payments. The Fraud Section leads the Medicare Fraud Strike Force. Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, which maintains 15 strike forces operating in 24 districts, has charged more than 4,200 defendants who have collectively billed the Medicare program for nearly $19 billion.justice.gov
U.S. Attorney says government can still seek to take auto workers union control: Detroit News
An American flag flies in front of the United Auto Workers union logo on the front of the UAW Solidarity House in Detroit, Michigan, September 8, 2011. REUTERS/Rebecca Cook(Reuters) - The U.S. government may still seek to take control of the United Auto Workers Union (UAW) once its investigators determine the depths of corruption in the union, U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider said in an interview with Detroit News on Sunday. U.S. prosecutors are currently investigating former members of the union in connection with a corruption probe. Government oversight of the UAW is a possible solution to reforming the union, said Schneider, who is leading the probe. Acting UAW President Rory Gamble has promised to clean up the union and avoid a possible U.S. government takeover of the labor organization.feeds.reuters.com
Latin Counts gang member sentenced to 30 years in prison for southwest Detroit drive-by shooting
A Latin Counts gang member was sentenced Thursday to 30 years in federal prison for conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering and assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering, announced United States Attorney Matthew Schneider, Special Agent in Charge James Deir of the ATFs Detroit Division, and Chief James Craig of the Detroit Police Department. Ryan Jose Taylor of Detroit was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Robert H. Cleland for planning and carrying out with fellow Latin Counts gang members a drive-by shooting in a residential neighborhood of southwest Detroit that took place on Oct. 7, 2017, killing one victim and injuring two others. Taylor, 24, also goes by the name Loco. According to court records, Taylor fired the gunshot that killed the deceased victim. Also according to court records, the Latin Counts gang operates primarily in southwest Detroit and the downriver communities of Lincoln Park and Ecorse. The Latin Counts are a criminal enterprise responsible for murders, robberies, and the distribution of illegal drugs.
Detroit Home Health Owner Sentenced to Prison for Role in $1.5 Million Medicare Kickback Scheme
The owner of a Michigan home health agency was sentenced today to 60 months in prison for his role in a scheme involving approximately $1.5 million in Medicare claims for home health services that were procured through the payment of illegal kickbacks. In May 2018, Amarrah pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States and pay and receive health care kickbacks in connection with a federal health care program and to four counts of paying health care kickbacks. Trial Attorneys Howard Locker and Jay McCormack, Assistant Chief Jacob Foster, and Counsel to the Chief of the Health Care Fraud Unit Amy Markopoulos of the Fraud Section prosecuted the case. The Fraud Section leads the Medicare Fraud Strike Force. Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, which maintains 15 strike forces operating in 24 districts, has charged more than 4,200 defendants who have collectively billed the Medicare program for nearly $19 billion.justice.gov
Flashpoint 7/7/19: Rooting out corruption in Michigan; civility in a heated political climate
DETROIT - Here is what you missed on Sunday's episode of Flashpoint:Rooting out corruption means more cases in Michigan than anywhere else. U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan Matthew Schneider discussed the issue Sunday. The second segment of Flashpoint featured Nolan Finley, editorial page editor of The Detroit News and Stephen Henderson, host of Detroit Today on WDET. Both discussed how to maintain civility in today's heated political climate. Segment One:U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan Matthew SchneiderSegment Two:Nolan Finley, editorial page editor of The Detroit News and Stephen Henderson, host of Detroit Today on WDET.
Michigan Biodiesel Dealer Pleads Guilty to Tax Fraud
A Bloomfield, Michigan, biodiesel fuel dealer pleaded guilty today to filing a false income tax return, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Departments Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider of the Eastern District of Michigan. According to plea documents, Chandra Yarlagadda, 54, owned and operated Alpha Bioenergy LLC (Alpha), formerly known as Naturol Bioenergy LLC, which purchased and sold biodiesel fuel. Yarlagadda reported income and expenses associated with Alpha on Schedules C attached to his personal income tax returns. By claiming these inflated deductions, Yarlagadda avoided paying an additional $2.3 million in federal income taxes that was due. Additional information about the Tax Division and its enforcement efforts can be found on the divisions website.justice.gov
Sterling Heights man pleads guilty to exporting firearms parts...
STERLING HEIGHTS, Mich. - A Sterling Heights man pleaded guilty Friday to willfully exporting firearms parts without a license, according to Matthew Schneider, United States attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan. Rrok Martin Camaj, 34, entered the guilty plea before United States District Court Judge Terrence G. Berg. According to court records, from March 2018 through January 2019 Camaj sent firearms partsincluding pistol frames, firing pins, springs, ejectors and magazinesthrough the mail to cohorts in Australia. To lawfully ship firearms and certain firearms partsincluding those sent by Camajan individual or business must be licensed. To avoid detection by law enforcement officers, Camaj hid the firearms parts inside large motorized toy motorcycles.
Melvindale resident sentenced for defrauding Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency
WAYNE COUNTY, Mich. - A Melvindale resident was sentenced Thursday to 70 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to wire fraud and aggravated identity theft in connection with an unemployment compensation scheme, United States Attorney Matthew Schneider announced Friday. Once Constantine falsely applied for the benefits, he would receive a prepaid debit card charged with unemployment insurance benefit funds and use them for his personal benefit. Constantine submitted 63 false claims that resulted in a loss to the agency of $188,946. Unemployment insurance is designed to provide benefits for employees who need money while they are out of work, Schneider said. People who abuse the system will pay the consequences.The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jihan Williams.
UAW official Vance Pearson, others, accused of embezzling thousands
The UAW's Region 5 covers the tens of thousands of UAW members from Missouri and the sixteen states to the southwest, including California. The Detroit criminal complaint charges Pearson with conspiring with other UAW officials to embezzle UAW money for the personal benefit of Pearson and other senior UAW officials by concealing personal expenditures in the cost of UAW Region 5 conferences held in Palm Springs, California, Coronado, California, and Missouri. From the U.S. Attorney's office:"For example, Pearson and other senior UAW officials used UAW money to buy sets of golf clubs, individual clubs, and other golf equipment that cost thousands of dollars. UAW funds were also used to pay for meals for senior UAW officials at high-end restaurants outside the time periods of the UAW conferences to which they were charged." UAW statementThe UAW released this statement on the charges against Pearson:"Our highest priority is maintaining the trust and confidence of United Auto Worker members.
Patient Recruiter Found Guilty in $1.3 Million Medicare Kickback Scheme
A federal jury in Detroit, Michigan found a patient recruiter guilty today for his role in a scheme involving approximately $1.3 million in fraudulent Medicare claims for home health care that were procured through the payment of kickbacks. According to evidence presented at trial, from 2009 to 2017, Trumbo, owner of Trumbo Consulting Agency, engaged in an illegal kickback scheme to defraud Medicare of approximately $1.3 million through fraudulent home health claims. These home health agencies then submitted claims to Medicare for home health services that were purportedly provided to those beneficiaries. The Fraud Section leads the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, which is part of a joint initiative between the Department of Justice and HHS to focus their efforts to prevent and deter fraud and enforce current anti-fraud laws around the country. Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, which maintains 14 strike forces operating in 23 districts, has charged nearly 4,000 defendants who have collectively billed the Medicare program for more than $14 billion.justice.gov
Michigan Patient Recruiter Sentenced to Prison for $1.5 Million Kickback Scheme
A Michigan patient recruiter was sentenced to 60 months in prison today for her role in a scheme involving approximately $1.5 million in fraudulent Medicare claims for home health care that were procured through the payment of kickbacks. Sophia Eggleston, 57, of Detroit, Michigan, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Bernard A. Friedman of the Eastern District of Michigan, who also ordered Eggleston to pay approximately $1.5 million in restitution. Egglestons co-conspirators then submitted fraudulent claims to Medicare for home health services that were purportedly provided to those beneficiaries. The Fraud Section leads the Medicare Fraud Strike Force. Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, which maintains 14 strike forces operating in 23 districts, has charged nearly 4,000 defendants who have collectively billed the Medicare program for more than $14 billion.justice.gov