US attorney in western Va. collects $500M


ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — The U.S. attorney for Virginia's western district says the office collected more than $500 million in criminal and civil penalties in the last fiscal year.

That's the largest amount ever collected in the district. A big chunk is attributed to the $1.5 billion Abbott Laboratories paid to federal and state governments to settle allegations that the company promoted a drug for uses not approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

U.S. Attorney Timothy Heaphy says his office also worked with other federal offices to jointly collect nearly $1.2 billion in civil cases.

U.S. attorneys' offices are responsible for enforcing and collecting civil and criminal debts owed to the U.S. and crime victims.

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