PoliticalNews.me - Sep 17,2016 - Judiciary Committee Advances Grassley-Blumenthal Bill to Curb Crimes Targeting Seniors
“Crimes targeting America’s senior citizens are widespread and have
impacted families across the country including Iowa. As more and more
Americans age and become targets of these crimes, law enforcement,
seniors and their caregivers must be better equipped to prevent and
respond. The Elder Abuse Prevention and Prosecution Act takes meaningful
steps to deter criminals seeking to exploit seniors and hold
accountable those who do,” Grassley said.
“The unconscionable scourge of elder abuse is all too common in our
country. It’s an issue that notably hit home in Connecticut with the
tragic case of Purple Heart recipient Robert Matava. This national hero
deserved the utmost care during his senior years, but instead he was
defrauded by those he trusted most. Our bipartisan legislation, a
portion of which is named in Matava’s honor, is now one step closer to
raising awareness, improving prevention, and increasing prosecution in
order to combat this shameless crime,” Blumenthal said.
The bill (S. 3270) expands data collection and information sharing to
better prevent and respond to all forms of elder abuse and exploitation,
including financial crimes against seniors. Specifically, the bill
increases training for federal investigators and prosecutors and calls
for the designation of at least one prosecutor in each judicial district
who will be tasked with handling cases of elder abuse. It also ensures
that the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection and
the Justice Department will both have an elder justice coordinator.
Further, the bill improves information sharing among government
agencies and between federal, state and local authorities to develop
best practices in the fight against elder financial exploitation.
Finally, the bill increases penalties for perpetrators of such crimes –
including mandatory forfeiture – to deter future offences.
The bipartisan 3,000-member Elder Justice Coalition called the bill,
“one of the most comprehensive and meaningful bills ever developed to
address the rapidly increasing problem of elder financial abuse in
America.” The bill also has the support of the Alzheimer’s Association,
the National District Attorneys Association, Consumers Union, SIFMA,
the 60 Plus Association, Leading Age, and the National Center for
Victims of Crime, as well as the Conference of Chief Justices and the
Conference of State Court Administrators.
Along with Grassley and Blumenthal, the bill is cosponsored by Senators,
John Cornyn (R-Texas), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.),
Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), and Thom Tillis
Earlier this year, Grassley chaired a Judiciary Committee hearing to
examine how best to protect older Americans from financial abuse.
Grassley also launched several inquiries to combat crimes against
seniors and worked to raise greater aware for such issues facing
seniors. (Click to continue)
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Judiciary Committee Advances Grassley-Blumenthal Bill to Curb Crimes Targeting Seniors