As the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, the federal government is preparing to take unprecedented action to curb its effects on the nation’s health and economy by freeing up federal dollars for private businesses, manufacturers, and healthcare entities of all types. But, those receiving these dollars, directly or indirectly, should continue to monitor updates to and maintain compliance with all applicable laws and regulations as this unprecedented economic response comes with heightened scrutiny.
In an internal memo on March 16, Attorney General William Barr stated that the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) would remain vigilant in its efforts to combat fraud related to the COVID-19 crisis and directed all U.S. Attorneys to prioritize the detection, investigation, and prosecution of illegal conduct related to the pandemic. On March 19, Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen directed the U.S. Attorney in each federal district to appoint a Coronavirus Fraud Coordinator to serve as legal counsel on coronavirus-related matters, direct the prosecution of coronavirus-related crimes, and to conduct outreach and awareness.