Tricounty News

Klobuchar examines need for increased fraud enforcement in wake of economic downturn

During Judiciary Committee hearing, Klobuchar calls for increased vigilance against financial crimes At a Judiciary Committee hearing today, U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar called for increased action to combat and prevent financial crimes and fraud, like the Madoff scandal, that are coming to light in the wake of the current economic crisis.  Before entering the Senate, Klobuchar served as the chief prosecutor for Minneapolis and its suburbs.  In that role, she worked closely with the U.S. Attorney's Office, the FBI, and other federal agencies on a number of white collar criminal cases.  "After years of lax oversight and investigation, we are beginning to see many financial crimes come to light," said Klobuchar.  "With the Bernard Madoff scandal and many others like it, the chickens are coming home to roost.  Our bad economy is now exposing financial crimes that had been concealed for years.  Much more needs to be done to combat-and prevent-the types of financial crimes." During the hearing, Klobuchar questioned government officials about their plans to crack down on financial crimes and the tools they need to effectively combat, investigate and prosecute individuals and businesses who may have defrauded the government or consumers.  She noted that it is especially important to have enough cops on the beat to combat this type of fraud. Klobuchar told the government witnesses that they needed to be increasingly vigilant against financial crimes given the recent government spending in the TARP and economic recovery package.    The witnesses at today's hearing were:  John S. Pistole, Deputy Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Washington, D.C. The Honorable Neil M. Barofsky, Special Inspector General, Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Assets Relief Program, Washington, D.C. Rita M. Glavin, Acting Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, U.S. Department of Justice, Washington, D.C.