Crime During Disasters


Hurricane Irene moves through the Caribbean up the Eastern Seaboard of the United States

Thousands of individuals were prosecuted in an attempt to take advantage of natural and man-made disasters by committing frauds and related crimes, said a U.S. Justice Department report.

In cases related to Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma alone, the Disaster Fraud Task force, originally created as the Hurricane Katrina Fraud Task Force in September 2005, through FY 2011 prosecuted 1,439 individuals in 47 federal districts throughout the country. These prosecutions involved a wide variety of fraudulent activity, including charity scams, government and private-sector benefit fraud, identity theft, contract and procurement fraud, and public corruption.

Read the report here.

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