A Washington federal judge questioned prosecutors’ decision to request $1.5 million from US Capitol demonstrators, while American taxpayers will contribute over $500 million to cover restitution.
Misdemeanor cases among the protestors of January 6th will request $500, while felonies are at $2,000. Chief U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell said, “Where we have Congress acting, appropriating all this money due directly to the events of January 6, I have found the damage amount of less than $1.5 million – when all of us American taxpayers are about to foot the bill for close to half a billion dollars – a little bit surprising.”
The judge referenced a $2.1 billion emergency security bill which includes $521 million for the National Guard, $70 million to Capitol Police, and $300 million for Capitol security improvements. Congress passed the multi-dimensional bill on July 29th. Previously, Howell was a Brooklyn federal prosecutor and Senate Judiciary Committee general counsel.
She added, “I’m accustomed to the government being fairly aggressive in terms of fraud when there have been damages that accrue from a criminal act for the restitution amount.” Assistant U.S. Attorney Clayton Henry O’Connor responded to Howell’s inquiry by suggesting the federal government will outline its restitution costs before October.
ARTICLE: ANTOINETTE AHO
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: NEW YORK TIMES
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