|USDOJ Homepage||Strategic Plan Homepage||A Message from the Attorney General||FY 1999 Annual Accountability Report||FY 2000 Performance Report and FY 2002 Performance Plan|
|Table of Contents||Introduction||Chapter I||Chapter II||Goal One|
|Goal Two||Goal Three||Goal Four||Goal Five||Goal Six|
|Goal Seven||Goal Eight||External Factors||Chapter III||Appendix A|
|Appendix B||Appendix C||Appendix D||Appendix E||Appendix F|
GOAL 2: ENFORCING FEDERAL CRIMINAL LAWS
Keeping America safe by deterring, investigating, and prosecuting violations of federal criminal laws is at the heart of our Strategic Plan. It is a key mission element. The Department focuses on combating those crimes whose violence and economic impact most threaten the fabric and security of American society and for which the Department has particular jurisdiction and unique competencies. Goal Two outlines the Department's strategic objectives in reducing violent crime, particularly violent crime arising from the illegal use of guns, organized criminal enterprises and drug trafficking organizations; combating espionage against the United States; combating white collar crime, particularly economic crime and cybercrime; and combating crimes against children and other vulnerable victims. The Justice components that share responsibility for this strategic goal include the U.S. Attorneys, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Criminal, Antitrust, Environment, and Tax Divisions.
Strategic Objective 2.1 VIOLENT CRIME - - Reduce the threat, incidence, and prevalence of violent crime, especially as it stems from illegal use of guns or from organized criminal enterprises.
Increasing the quality and number of gun prosecutions, both federally and at the state level, is an established priority of the Department. Components throughout the Department are committed to improving our law enforcement response to gun violence and to assist communities in addressing evolving violent crime problems. Enhanced enforcement of gun laws across the nation is a means to achieving a reduction in gun violence. Moreover, it sends a clear message to anyone who illegally uses or possesses a gun that there is a unified effort at all levels of government to bring armed violent offenders to justice.
Organized criminal enterprises consist of both traditional and non-traditional crime groups. While the traditional groups operate with an hierarchical organization, the non-traditional groups have a looser but evolving structure.
Traditional criminal enterprises of the various La Cosa Nostra (LCN) families focus on making money through illegal activities, including various racketeering crimes, such as narcotics trafficking, fraud, money laundering, extortion, gambling, arson, counterfeiting, and prostitution. LCN maintains and enforces its power through murder and intimidation. The threat posed by the LCN to American society is two-fold. First is the sheer amount of criminal activity it generates, ranging from drug trafficking to theft, loan-sharking, white collar schemes, and labor and management racketeering. According to law enforcement estimates, annual losses attributable to the LCN are estimated to be more than $100 billion, much of which is passed on to consumers as higher prices for goods and services. Second is the LCN's ability to corrupt public, labor union, and business officials. It is this ability that is one of the defining factors separating "organized crime" from violent street gangs and other criminal activity. Corruption provides protection for the organization, shields its leadership from prosecutions, and creates a circle of self-perpetuating criminal activity.
Non-traditional organized crime groups from Russia, Eastern Europe, Asia, Central and South America, Africa, and many other parts of the world have begun to operate effectively and very dangerously in the United States. These groups have flourished in the drug underworld and have employed violent means to establish themselves. They are not as firmly established as the LCN, although some of them have emulated the LCN in the way they have structured their operations.
Members of domestic and ethnic street gangs frequently engage in drug trafficking activities and often use firearms in the commission of their crimes. These violent gangs are taking over parts of cities, flooding streets with drugs, and terrorizing and killing innocent people. An emerging problem is gangs comprised of older, more experienced and hardened criminals that have formed networks with counterparts across the nation. These gangs are more violent than their predecessors and their criminal activities are far more sophisticated.
Violent street gangs often engage in gun trafficking in order to raise money as well as fortify gang members. In order to obtain firearms, gang members engage in robberies, home invasions, and other acts of violence. Gang members acquire false identification in order to purchase firearms. Additionally, gang members recruit associates without criminal records to travel interstate for the purpose of purchasing firearms, using the proceeds from drug trafficking, robberies, and other criminal activity.
In a recent survey on gang activities conducted by the National Drug Intelligence Center (NDIC), 85 percent of the law enforcement agencies responding reported that gangs were active within their jurisdiction. These reporting agencies identified more than 13,700 gangs and 750,000 gang members. According to the National Alliance of Gang Investigators Association National Threat Assessment published in February 2000, there were more than 30,000 gangs and 800,000 gang members. While gang membership is difficult to estimate, experts agree that the numbers are much higher than they were a decade ago. Among the disturbing trends noted in the survey is the increase in the possession of guns by gang members. Despite the fact that the incidence of gun violence has declined and federal prosecutions for firearms offenses have increased, violence stemming from the illegal use of guns remains a serious concern. Although the Brady Act has been effective in denying the sale of guns to more than 500,000 felons, fugitives, and other persons prohibited from possessing firearms, all too often guns are in the wrong hands. Every day in the United States, 93 people die of gunshot wounds either accidentally or intentionally inflicted.
Strategies to Achieve the Objective
Reduce violence stemming from the illegal use of guns in each of the 94 federal judicial districts.
In May 2001, the President and Attorney General announced Project Safe Neighborhoods, a nationwide commitment to reduce gun crime in America by networking existing local programs that target gun crime and providing those programs with additional tools necessary to be successful. The effectiveness of Project Safe Neighborhoods is based on the ability of federal, state, and local agencies to cooperate in a unified offensive that is guided by the United States Attorney in every one of the 94 federal judicial districts across America. Through intensive collaboration with federal, state, and local law enforcement, each United States Attorney will implement the five core elements, described below, of Project Safe Neighborhoods. The elements will be contoured to fit the specific gun crime problems in a given district. To complement the efforts of local gun crimes units, the Department of Justice will create a Firearms Enforcement Assistance Team composed of prosecutors, agents, and analysts experienced in each of the five core elements of this initiative. This team will stand ready to assist in the field as needed to consult, advise, and prosecute in districts with problems. The goal is to create safer neighborhoods by reducing gun violence and sustaining the reduction.
1. Partnerships. This initiative will require every United States Attorney to coordinate all gun-related programs at the federal, state and local law level within the district. Each United States Attorney will establish a task force consisting of federal and local officials to review and prepare gun cases for prosecution in the most appropriate forum. Good examples of strong, coordinated partnerships include Project Exile, originated in Richmond, Virginia, and Operation Ceasefire, created in Boston, Massachusetts. The success of these models is based largely upon the strength of the partnerships established between federal and local law enforcement and prosecutors.
2. Strategic Plan. Of vital importance to the success of any law enforcement partnership is the development of strategic plans to attack gun violence. The strategic plans, like the specific gun violence problems, will vary from one community to another. In one area, an aggressive plan to target violent gangs may be appropriate, while in another area, a plan to target illegal gun possessors may be more effective. Although the means may differ, the goal is the same: to reduce gun violence.
3. Training. Training is essential for officials to keep current on laws and trends that affect law enforcement. In order to maintain an edge in the attack on gun violence, this initiative mandates more expansive and comprehensive training for federal, state, and local law enforcement officers and prosecutors. As part of this initiative, the Justice Department will partner with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), the National District Attorneys Association, and local law enforcement to conduct innovative regional cross-training of prosecutors and agents involved in gun crime enforcement. This training will address firearms identification, safety, federal and state firearms violations and statutes, federal and state search and seizure laws, crime scene and evidence management, and firearms trafficking and tracing.
4. Outreach. Community outreach and public awareness constitute essential components of any successful gun violence reduction plan. By conveying the priorities, message and results of this enhanced enforcement effort to the media and community members, the United States Attorney can help shape the attitudes of law abiding citizens and those who would otherwise believe they can violate gun laws with impunity.
A strategic network will be established with new or existing coalitions within each community with the goal of encouraging "ownership" of this initiative. As demonstrated by Project Exile and Operation Cease-fire, public outreach increases awareness, develops surrogates, and enhances the deterrent effect of the strategy within the community. Items as simple as bumper stickers, pump logos, and other promotional materials will promote visibility of this initiative within the community.
5. Accountability. A critical component of a comprehensive gun violence reduction plan is understanding the impact of efforts. Traditionally, enforcement efforts have been measured by counting the number of arrests, prosecutions, and convictions ("outputs") rather than the impact these law enforcement efforts have on reducing crime ("outcomes"). This initiative includes resources to assist the United States Attorneys in measuring the long term impact of the programs they implement. Regular reporting to the Department of Justice will be required to assess outcomes, to gauge the success of the measures implemented, and to analyze trends. This will help to assess our progress and to instill accountability into our enforcement efforts.
The Department is committing substantial resources to the Project Safe Neighborhoods: $558.8 million will be committed to the effort over the next two years, including the $233.6 million already available this year. The funding is being used to hire new federal and state prosecutors, support investigators, provide training, and develop and promote community outreach efforts.
With respect to organized gun trafficking by violent street gang enterprises, the FBI, through its Safe Streets Task Forces (SSTF) targets the organized acquisition, transportation, and distribution of firearms by violent street gang enterprises. This is designed to supplement the arsenal of investigative tools used by SSTF investigators to target criminal enterprises and is clearly distinguished from Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms lead initiatives designed to target individual offenders who possess firearms in violation of federal law.
Target specific organized criminal enterprises to eliminate their power and influence in America.
The Department will continue to identify, penetrate, and dismantle major criminal enterprises so that real progress is made toward reducing the influence of all organized criminal enterprises. For well-entrenched international organized crime, our strategy is to identify the most significant organizations operating in the United States; identify their structure, hierarchy, and operations; and initiate joint investigations designed to curtail their emergence. Addressing the threat posed by the Eurasian Criminal Enterprises (ECEs) requires a dual strategy. First, it involves neutralizing the ECES that have the potential to engage in complex criminal conspiracies that can inflict substantial harm to American economic interests; second, it involves assisting vulnerable foreign governments to build their own investigative capacity to reduce the number of places within which ECES can freely operate or to prevent these criminal organizations from establishing a foothold in the first place. Regarding Asian Criminal Enterprises, our strategy is to concentrate on identifying the most significant groups, their leadership, and their scope and territory of criminal activity.
Target, investigate, and prosecute the most violent street gangs in our cities and communities.
The FBI will continue to focus its National Gang Strategy (NGS) on major violent domestic street gangs/drug enterprises that pose significant threats to the integrity of American society. Historically, NGS groups have displayed the ability to be well-organized, innovative, and extremely violent in protecting and securing the organizations' criminal goals. Coupled with the ability to quickly expand nationally, NGS groups are formidable opponents of law enforcement. These organizations have a strong foothold in many rural and urban cities across the country, and therefore need to be targeted and/or monitored proactively through joint federal, state, and local investigative initiatives to neutralize future growth.
The Bureau's resources are concentrated to thwart this expansion of gang activity and related violent criminal activity. The strategy is composed of a proactive effort that seeks to identify and neutralize emerging national gang trends. In responding to the national priorities, the FBI will identify, prioritize, and target violent street gangs whose activity pose a significant multijurisdictional threat. In areas where no NGS gang is present, the FBI strategy will be to prioritize and target for investigation those violent street gangs deemed to be the most significant and criminally active in that region. Where there is a presence of an NGS gang but it is determined not to be the most significant or criminally active in the area, the FBI strategy will be to monitor the activity of the NGS gang through its intelligence and appropriate multidivisional coordination and liaison efforts while prioritizing and targeting for investigation those violent street gangs deemed to be the most significant and criminally active in the field office territory.
Accordingly, certain criminal enterprises pose a significant threat to American society because of their multidivisional or multijurisdictional nature, their propensity for violence, and their rapid proliferation. The Enterprise Theory of Investigation is the focus of the NGS, and should address large multijurisdictional street gangs that can be most effectively eliminated through the use of this strategy. These enterprises, nearly all of which have numerous factions, include the Bloods, Crips, Folk Nation, People Nation, Mara Salvatrucha, 18th Street Gang, La Raza, Border Brothers, Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs, and Prison Gangs.
Provide operational enforcement assistance and training to tribal governments.
The Department will continue to provide both training and direct investigative and prosecutorial assistance to tribal governments. Accordingly, the U. S. Attorneys have designated Assistant U.S. Attorneys as tribal liaisons to work cooperatively with tribal police, prosecutors, and judges. The FBI, which has primary jurisdiction over major crimes committed by or upon Indians within Indian Country, uses its Tribal Assistance Program appropriations to fund training, operational expenses, and equipment purchases for Indian Country law enforcement efforts. The training provided includes homicide investigations, crime scene management, first responder, interviewing/interrogating, drug investigations, child sexual abuse, street survival skills, archeological crimes, crisis management, command college, stress management, and gaming violations.
Through its Office of Indian Country Investigations, the FBI assists tribes in the investigation of violent crimes committed in Indian Country. In addition, the Bureau provides a large share of the forensic exams for FBI Indian Country investigations either directly through its own laboratories or by funding non-FBI labs. The Indian Country Evidence Task Force, created on June 1, 2000, is dedicated solely to Native American crimes.
Promote increased cooperation with foreign law enforcement authorities.
The Department will continue to improve international cooperation against violent and organized crime through enhanced liaison and international training and technical assistance activities. It will also strongly support and expand efforts to use Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties as means to acquire evidence and other assistance from foreign countries. Through the U.S. National Central Bureau/International Criminal Police Organization, it will communicate and exchange information between domestic and foreign law enforcement agencies to ensure that the common interests of the United States are accurately represented to the international law enforcement community.
Key Crosscutting Programs
Asset Forfeiture Program. The Department's Asset Forfeiture Program (AFP) is a nationwide law enforcement program that continues to be an effective and powerful weapon in the Department's fight against crime. The primary mission of the AFP is to maximize the effectiveness of forfeiture as a deterrent to crime. Illegal organizations - - large and small - - are enhanced by the profits and proceeds obtained through such illicit activity. The AFP is committed to destroying criminal organizations by means of depriving drug traffickers, racketeers, and other criminal syndicates of their ill-gotten proceeds and the instrumentalities of their trade. The AFP includes training to educate federal, state, and local forfeiture prosecutors and investigators in ways to enhance the expertise needed to integrate forfeiture into every investigation and prosecution appropriately. The Department encourages federal, state, and local law enforcement cooperation by sharing the proceeds of a forfeiture with the state or local law enforcement agency that participates in an investigation which results in a forfeiture.
Strategic Objective 2.2 DRUGS - - Reduce the threat, trafficking, and related violence of illegal drugs by identifying, disrupting, and dismantling drug trafficking organizations.
The devastating impact of drug trafficking and the use of illegal drugs is amply illustrated by figures published by the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) in the 2000 "National Drug Control Strategy." That report estimated that there were approximately 52,000 deaths and $110 billion in economic losses which occurred in the United States in 1995 as a result of illegal drug use. That economic figure included costs from unnecessary health care, crime, and lost productivity resulting from substance abuse. Illicit drug use hurts families, businesses, and neighborhoods; impedes education; and chokes the criminal justice, health, and social service systems. Three and one-half million Americans are chronic drug users and over one-half million drug-related emergencies occur each year in the U.S.
Foreign-based and sophisticated drug trafficking organizations are responsible for supplying the U.S. with most of its illegal drugs, and trafficking of these drugs is a significant factor in the crime and violence that occurs in our communities. As a result of extensive and effective law enforcement operations in both the U.S. and Colombia, the operations of many of the notorious Colombian drug trafficking cartels which controlled the cocaine trade in the 1980s and early 1990s have been significantly disrupted. Unfortunately, the threats posed by those cartels have been replaced by smaller entrepreneurial drug trafficking organizations based in Colombia, Central America, and the Caribbean, and by Mexican drug trafficking organizations which transport cocaine, heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine, and other synthetic drugs across the southwest border of the United States.
As a result of law enforcement activities in the Caribbean and South Florida, Colombian cartels have formed alliances with Mexican smuggling groups to transship large loads of cocaine across the Mexican/United States border. The smuggling groups have evolved into large scale, sophisticated drug trafficking organizations which control the drug trade across the 2,000 mile border. Today, approximately 66 percent of the cocaine entering the U.S. is smuggled across the southwest border. Mexican drug trafficking organizations also engage in substantial acts of violence and public corruption along both sides of the border to support their drug trafficking operations.
Law enforcement strategies to target the organizations that traffic in illicit drugs must address a variety of smuggling and production efforts:
- - Cocaine and heroin are produced entirely outside the United States and smuggled into this country, largely over our southern border. Approximately three-quarters of the world supply of cocaine is produced in Colombia. While the majority of worldwide heroin production is located in countries that are virtually immune to United States influence - - particularly Myanmar and Afghanistan - - the primary source of heroin sold in the United States is Colombia and Mexico.
- - Although methamphetamine is smuggled into the United States, much is also manufactured in thousands of clandestine laboratories, primarily located in California and the Midwest. Not long ago, clandestine laboratory operators treated their recipes for methamphetamine as valuable secrets; now, recipes for making methamphetamine are available on the Internet. In addition, Mexican trafficking groups are now manufacturing large amounts of methamphetamine in "super" labs located in California and Mexico.
- - Most marijuana available in the United States is produced in Mexico and South America then smuggled across the southwest border. However, marijuana continues to be cultivated in the United States, both indoors and outdoors. For example, in 2000, over 2.8 million plants were eradicated, of which nearly 2.6 million were outdoor plants. In addition, over the past two decades, while the average tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content of commercial-grade marijuana increased from 2 to 5.2 percent, the increase in THC potency of marijuana cultivated indoors was staggering. Indoor cultivation, often comprised of sinsemilla plant, was much higher, rising from 3.2 percent in 1977 to an average of 13.2 percent in 2000. Also of note is the influx of Canadian marijuana (commonly referred to as "BC Bud") into the northwestern United States. According to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the THC potency of BC Bud is between 12 and 15 percent.
The Department focuses its law enforcement efforts on disrupting and dismantling the drug trafficking organizations and their members that supply and distribute the wholesale quantities of illicit drugs, as well as the individual drug traffickers who sell drugs on the streets of America. Over many years, the Department has developed and will continue an integrated approach to attacking the international organizations that use sophisticated mechanisms to distribute drugs, as well as the local trafficking organizations that prey on communities.
Strategies to Achieve the Objective
Coordinate domestic and foreign strategic intelligence information from all sources, including the law enforcement agencies, intelligence community, and financial databases.
The Department has long recognized the need to target its limited drug enforcement resources in order to achieve any lasting success against the large, well-financed, and sophisticated criminal organizations that are responsible for bringing most illegal drugs into the United States and distributing them once they get here. Such strategic targeting and coordination of national-level drug investigations and prosecutions is accomplished by the Special Operations Division (SOD).
The SOD is a multiagency national law enforcement coordinating entity comprised of agents, analysts, and prosecutors from DEA, the FBI, the U.S. Customs Service (USCS), the NDIC, and the Department's Criminal Division. The mission of SOD is to coordinate and support regional, national, and transnational criminal investigations and prosecutions against the major drug trafficking organizations threatening the United States. While SOD continues to focus on the major transnational criminal drug trafficking organizations operating along either side of the U.S.-Mexico land border and in Colombia, it has expanded its role to coordinate and support transnational criminal investigations of the emerging major drug trafficking organizations operating in Europe and Asia.
To fulfill its mission, the SOD works closely with the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) program, the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) program, and USAOs across the country. The SOD routinely performs its mission seamlessly across both investigative agency and district jurisdictional boundaries. The NDIC routinely assists SOD by deploying Document and Computer Exploitation teams in support of the highest priority SOD missions.
The timely exchange of investigative information and intelligence is critical to the success of the SOD mission. SOD has achieved dramatic successes in coordinating and supporting law enforcement operations to dismantle and destroy national and international drug trafficking organizations. We expect continued expansion in the accomplishments from SOD with the recent inclusion of the Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigative Division and the establishment of a financial investigative section at SOD.
Target drug traffickers and their organizations through OCDETF or equally complex investigations, using asset forfeiture as well as other tools when appropriate, and investigate and prosecute the movement of drug proceeds into, within, and out of the United States.
The Department's counternarcotics strategy is built around the recognition that the best way to attack sophisticated narcotics trafficking and money laundering organizations and their attendant criminal activity (e.g., corruption, violent crime, organized crime, and tax evasion) is through the use of a coordinated, interagency task force. The Department implements this strategy in several ways. The Department's long-standing OCDETF program, with its nine federal law enforcement agencies, is one example. The OCDETF program uses its wide range of agency expertise, experience, and capabilities to disrupt and dismantle the highest level drug trafficking organizations. More recently, the Departments of Justice and Treasury created the Special Operations Division, described above, which coordinates about 20 major national and international investigations each year.
Both the Departments of Justice and the Treasury are committed to identifying and attacking money laundering through a coordinated national approach targeting specified sectors of the financial system. In 1999, the two agencies, along with federal regulators and the Postal Inspection Service, announced a joint National Money Laundering Strategy. Through this approach, a particular financial sector is targeted to reduce its money laundering potential. Coordinating the use of asset forfeiture in our efforts to combat drug trafficking is also critical. Through the appropriate use of asset forfeiture, the Department attacks the economic infrastructure of criminal organizations to take the profit out of drug trafficking and deprive the criminals of the illegally-gotten gains which are used to operate and expand their enterprises.
Develop and implement a district drug enforcement strategy under the guidance of each U.S. Attorney.
The harm caused to our cities and towns by local drug trafficking organizations must be addressed at the community level, and the Department, through the U.S. Attorney in each district, leads these efforts. By bringing together the federal, state, and local law enforcement representatives in their districts, the USAs can draw upon the talents and experiences of each of the participating agencies. Whereas state and local law enforcement are likely to have the necessary strategic information and experience on local gangs, federal agents can utilize state-of-the-art investigative technology, witness security programs, and sophisticated laboratory analysis of evidence.
Reduce the domestic production of illegal drugs and the illegal diversion of precursor and essential chemicals.
Precursor and/or essential chemicals are crucial for manufacturing most illicit drugs sold on the streets of the United States. For example, the processes used to refine raw coca into powder cocaine and to produce methamphetamine require a variety of chemicals. The Department has two initiatives that target chemical distributors who are involved in diverting precursor and essential chemicals to the illicit marketplace. Operation Backtrack targets "rogue" chemical distribution companies who sell precursor chemicals. Operation Velocity supports investigations of domestic methamphetamine distribution groups and clandestine laboratory operators. The Department, through DEA's Domestic Cannabis Eradication and Suppression Program, uses coordinated planning and operations to enhance the ability of federal, state, and local agencies to suppress cultivation of marijuana and increase crop destruction.
Finally, the Department participates in the ONDCP-funded National Methamphetamine Chemical Initiative, a multiagency working group consisting of representatives from the DEA, USAOs, NDIC, and state and local law enforcement officials. Representatives of this working group collaborate in the production and dissemination of timely information bulletins focusing on emerging trends related to the production and distribution of methamphetamine.
Support international cooperative efforts to investigate and prosecute major drug trafficking organizations and bilateral and multilateral initiatives to mobilize international efforts against illegal drug activities.
Unfortunately, the growth of the global economy has made it easier for drug traffickers to move across borders and ship their illegal goods. The Department seeks every opportunity to gain cooperation from other nations in its fight against major drug traffickers through a variety of agreements and treaties, as well as less formal contact. For example, the DEA operates country attache offices in 57 foreign countries. Another example is the Department's Bilateral Case Initiative, which began when the DOJ and Colombian law enforcement conducted unprecedented investigation and prosecution efforts against the most significant traffickers in Colombia, and which has now expanded to other countries in the region. Also noteworthy is the success of DEA's Operation Amethyst (Purple), an ongoing, coordinated international effort of 28 countries, the International Narcotics Control Board, International Criminal Police Organization/INTERPOL, and the World Customs Organization, which seeks to stem the diversion of the cocaine-essential chemical, potassium permanganate, to the Andean Region. Additionally, the NDIC has trained Her Majesty's Customs and Excise on the use of RAID (Real-time Analytical Intelligence Database) and document exploitation and, at the request of the Department of State, is providing the same training to law enforcement personnel in Mexico.
Key Crosscutting Programs
OCDETF. The DOJ is responsible for the administration of the OCDETF program, which includes organizations within the Department of Justice (DEA, Criminal Division, FBI, USMS, USAO, INS) other federal law enforcement organizations (ATF, IRS, USCS, and the U.S. Coast Guard), as well state and local law enforcement agencies. Its purpose is to coordinate investigations of drug trafficking organizations which are international, multijurisdictional, or which represent organized criminal enterprises. In addition, the OCDETF Executive Office and the National High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Director's Office work collaboratively to target these organizations.
Organized Crime Strike Force Units. The Department maintains Organized Crime Strike Force Units in 23 USAOs, staffed by Assistant U.S. Attorneys who are dedicated exclusively to prosecuting LCN/Italian, Eurasian, and Asian organized crime cases. These offices have liaison with representatives of various federal investigative agencies as well as some state and local law enforcement agencies. To ensure that the program is coordinated from a national point of view, the Strike Force Units operate under general operational supervision and oversight of the Organized Crime and Racketeering Section of the Criminal Division.
HIDTAs. The Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 authorized the Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, in consultation with the Attorney General and the Secretary of the Treasury, to designate as HIDTAs areas of the United States which exhibit serious drug trafficking problems and harmfully impact other areas of the country. The HIDTA program improves the efficiency and effectiveness of drug control efforts by facilitating cooperation among federal, state, and local law enforcement and demand reduction agencies. Since 1990, 31 areas within the United States have been designated as HIDTAs.
High Intensity Financial Crimes Areas (HIFCAs). The Departments of Justice and the Treasury have designated the first four HIFCAs, where high concentrations of money laundering and other related financial crimes exist, and will coordinate federal, state, and local law enforcement resources to identify and target money laundering within the designated areas.
Maritime Drug Smuggling Investigations Program. The Department of Justice and U.S. Coast Guard have worked together to set in place improved procedures that will enhance the prosecution of the maritime drug smuggling cases where United States forces participated in the apprehension of the perpetrators.
NDIC Threat Assessments and Intelligence-sharing. NDIC produces strategic intelligence products that provide policy makers with timely information relating to the supply and demand of illicit drugs in the United States. Examples of these products are the annual National Drug Threat Assessment, state and regional assessments, Information Bulletins, the annual Arrival Zone Threat Assessment, and the Maritime Drug Threat Assessment. NDIC fosters information- sharing among federal, state, and local law enforcement and intelligence agencies through its National Drug Intelligence Library, and by distributing the Counternarcotics Publication Quarterly. NDIC's technology programs–such as upgrading the RAID database to provide cross-case analysis and internationalization, as well as NDIC's Hashkeeper initiative to improve computer exploitation–will enhance law enforcement's ability to process, analyze, and share information. Furthermore, the NDIC cooperates with, supports, and co-produces joint assessments with the various HIDTAs and OCDETFs, the DEA, FBI, and the SOD; it also conducts a quarterly multi-agency training course for the benefit of federal, state, and local law enforcement and intelligence personnel.
The El Paso Intelligence Center (EPIC). EPIC is a multiagency intelligence program designed specifically to act as a clearinghouse for tactical drug-related intelligence. The coordination services provided by EPIC are information-based and draw on the expertise of staff from multiple federal agencies.
Strategic Objective 2.3 ESPIONAGE - - Combat espionage against the United States by strengthening counterintelligence capabilities.
Foreign intelligence threats are planned, authorized, and financed by powers beyond our boundaries. Given the origin, nature, and constantly changing focus of these threats, they can never be completely eliminated. However, the success of foreign intelligence operations and the harm that they can cause to the United States can be mitigated with effective counterintelligence.
Over the past five years, the scope and nature of the foreign intelligence threat to the United States has expanded dramatically. In addition to traditional threats targeted toward obtaining sensitive information on traditional U.S. targets, (i.e., national defense, military operations and policy, U.S. intelligence, and science and technology information), numerous non-traditional threats have emerged, targeting similar information. Moreover, many of these intelligence threats have expanded their targets to include other sectors affecting U.S. security, most notably sensitive economic information and proprietary technology information. Concurrently, foreign threats now have elaborate and sophisticated networks consisting of governmental and nongovernmental entities engaged in long-term efforts to obtain information.
Moreover, rapid changes in technology have provided foreign intelligence threats with new, inexpensive, and efficient means to target, collect, and disseminate sensitive information. Intelligence operations against the United States are now far more fluid and complex than at any time in the past, making detection and prevention far more difficult.
Strategies to Achieve the Objective
Strengthen the Department's intelligence base and analytical capability to assess and respond to intelligence threats.
The DOJ must expand its knowledge of the intentions, methods, and capabilities of foreign intelligence threats. In addition, the Department must review the precise application of existing policies and guidelines to these threats, particularly with regard to foreign powers conducting activities in previously atypical target areas. The basis of the foreign counterintelligence program is the analysis of reliable human source information and timely information derived through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Gaining such information will require strengthening cross-program sharing of information and expertise; improving surveillance capabilities; and developing new technologies, including improved information management systems, to keep pace with the rapidly changing foreign intelligence threats. The Department also must improve its capacity to evaluate and anticipate threats posed by the intelligence activities of foreign powers. An increased emphasis on predictive analysis should produce operational intelligence products of broader scope and improved timeliness, as well as long-range, strategic studies addressing the intelligence collection plans, methods, intentions, capabilities, and personnel of foreign powers.
Key Crosscutting Programs
National Security List. The Department, in coordination with other elements of the intelligence community, engages in long-range analysis to identify and counter emerging threats. Foreign intelligence threats are investigated under the National Security List, which includes two categories of threats: country threats and issue threats. The categories were established to focus investigative efforts on activities which are detrimental to U.S. interests, and to provide sufficient resources to maximize efforts against those that are the most significant.
Strategic Objective 2.4 WHITE COLLAR CRIME - - Combat white collar and economic crime, especially cybercrime.
The Department recognizes that a strong deterrent capability is necessary to prevent criminals from defrauding and, therefore, weakening the Nation's industries and institutions, eroding the trust of the American public. White Collar Crime (WCC) encompasses illegal acts characterized by deceit, concealment, or violations of trust. These acts are generally not dependent on the application or threat of physical force or violence. They are committed by individuals and organizations in order to obtain money, property, and services, or to secure personal or business advantage.
WCC has been conservatively estimated to cost the U.S. billions of dollars annually. Precise financial losses resulting from WCC for consumers, government, and business are unknown since no systematic data collection exists. Only periodic case studies of some aspect of white collar crime, such as personal fraud or health care fraud, have been undertaken. For example, a 1995 National Institute of Justice (NIJ) study entitled "Victimization of Persons by Fraud," estimated an annual loss from personal fraud exceeding $40 billion. The NIJ study also found that 31 percent of survey respondents reported being a victim of personal fraud in 1995. A more recent National White Collar Crime Center study published in 2000 found that 36 percent of survey respondents said someone in their household had been a victim of fraud in the past 12 months. White collar crime accounted for approximately 13 percent of all cases filed by the Department of Justice in Fiscal Year 2000; financial institution fraud accounted for 36 percent in the same year.
The true cost of WCC is not always measurable in dollars. The corruption of public officials undermines trust in government, while ecological crimes, such as the illegal dumping of toxic wastes, can result in irreparable harm to the environment and endanger public safety. Some Internet fraud schemes, such as market manipulation of certain stocks, can cause massive losses for unwary investors. Other schemes - - such as fraudulent online sales of dangerous drugs or bogus medical devices - - can create a risk of serious physical harm or death. Unchecked, WCC can have a devastating impact on the nation's public welfare and economic well-being. The Internet Fraud Complaint Center is helping to identify and measure Internet crime.
It is often noted that just as the Internet and other global network computer systems have transformed the way we conduct business, run government, educate and communicate generally, such networks have also provided a powerful new medium in which to commit unlawful acts. The Internet provides con artists, extortionists, vandals, and other criminals with a formidable tool to commit traditional and new crimes. Because end users are spread across the world, a single scheme through the Internet can reach a vastly larger pool of potential victims than was possible a decade ago, at a far lower cost and unprecedented speed. The Internet also can provide a veil of anonymity that is difficult or impossible to achieve except in cyberspace.
Combating computer crime requires investigators, forensic experts, and prosecutors who must all have technical expertise. Unlike law enforcement agents fighting traditional crime, these individuals not only need to know generally how to investigate or prosecute a crime, but must also have specialized skills and training in computers and technology. They must be sufficiently conversant with technology to ensure that evidence is not lost or overlooked. Forensic experts need to know how to protect evidence and how to recover, analyze, and protect digital evidence that is often perishable and easily damaged. Prosecutors must know more than standard evidentiary and procedural rules; they must understand the specialized language and other complexities of high-technology crimes and be able to translate the evidence in a manner that is technically accurate, but also understandable to judges and juries.
In addition to corruption and cybercrime, WCC encompasses a wide assortment of other criminal economic schemes which vary in scope and complexity. Because the Department realizes the significance of WCC and its national impact, it devotes considerable resources to countering its many facets, as summarized in Table 1.
TABLE 1. Summary of White Collar Crime Categories and Issues
Health Care Fraud Fraudulent billing schemes in health care services rendered, as related to Medicare, Medicaid, government insurers and providers, private insurance companies, home health agencies, etc.,
Defrauding or misleading patients on quality of care issues.
Needless prescriptions for durable medical care equipment in exchange for "kickbacks."
Financial Institutions, Telemarketing and Other Fraud Internet fraud.
Mortgage and commercial loan fraud.
Check and negotiable instrument fraud.
Securities fraud and abuse in pension plans.
Consumer (telemarketing) fraud, particular cross-border fraud.
Fraudulent schemes against the elderly.
Identity theft, e.g., illegal credit card use, etc.
Public Corruption Corruption of government policies and programs.
Loss of government funds due to fraud, kickbacks, bribery, etc.
Campaign finance violations in federal elections.
Computer Crime and Theft of Intellectual Property Computer thefts and intrusions.
Intellectual property crime,e.g., illegal copying, counterfeit goods or services).
Internet/Online crime and other fraudulent schemes.
Antitrust Violations Increasingly complex matters.
Price fixing cartels that are:
Highly sophisticated; Increasingly international; Significant for the large volumes of commerce involved; and Extremely broad in terms of the number of businesses and consumers affected. Environmental Crimes Endangerment of the environment and public health, e.g., hazardous waste disposal, protection of habitats, water pollution, illegal trade in banned products, etc.
Fraud in environmental remediation industry.
Smuggling of endangered species and other protected species.
Exploitation and abuse of marine resources through illegal commercial fishing.
Environmental impact of other criminal activity, e.g., clandestine drug laboratories.
Tax Fraud Evasion of taxes through understatement of legal sources of income.
Utilizing domestic trusts and other abusive tax shelters to evade federal tax liabilities.
Illegal tax protest.
Secreting assets in foreign countries to evade federal tax liabilities.
Strategies to Achieve the Objective
Bolster the effectiveness of white collar crime investigations and prosecutions by strengthening coordination among domestic and international law enforcement agencies.
Key Department strategies for addressing WCC are developing partnerships with, and fostering coordination among, domestic and international law enforcement and regulatory agencies. The growth of electronic evidence and records, electronic commerce, and globalization magnify impediments that must be overcome in combating WCC and make such coordination indispensable. Because the Department's prosecutorial efforts are reliant upon excellent detection and investigation, Justice components have increased their participation on multiagency task forces and in collaborative initiatives to maximize opportunities to coordinate detection, investigation, and prosecution efforts. Additionally, the DOJ and FBI currently operate the Internet Fraud Complaint Center, which coordinates domestic and international Internet investigations.
Investigate and prosecute high-technology crimes.
The United States is facing an increasing threat from high-technology crime. Therefore, the Department must increase its efforts to investigate and prosecute such crime and to work with other government agencies to ensure a coordinated response. The Department will develop and support the development of tools, legal approaches, and operational strategies to assist law enforcement in investigating criminal activity that increasingly abuses the power of global networks and computers. The Department's Computer Crime and Telecommunications Coordinator (CTC) program, created to address high-technology crimes, has proven to be one of the most effective prosecutive networks in the country. Designated prosecutors in each of the U.S. Attorney's Offices are specially trained to handle computer crime and intellectual property cases. In FY 2000, there were 140 designated CTCs in the U.S. Attorney's Offices. In addition, the Department recently created Computer Hacking and Intellectual Property (CHIP) units in 10 U.S Attorney's Offices to supplement the CTC program.
With the increasing globalization of crime, DOJ will work with its international partners to develop the global infrastructure - - legal, technical, and operational - - necessary to combat criminal activity involving computers, networks, and intellectual property. The Department also continues to provide training and assistance to federal, state, and local law enforcement. Such assistance has included building virtual and personal networks among law enforcement personnel to facilitate cooperation in the investigation of complex cases. Recognizing that technologies affect public safety, the Department will work with the computer and telecommunications industry to ensure that industry understands the public safety implications of the technology it develops. At the same time, Justice will strive to ensure that law enforcement understands the new technologies that may present threats to public safety.
Increase the investigation and prosecution of public corruption as a means of deterring such behavior.
One way to reduce future corruption is to vigorously investigate and prosecute current corruption and to seek substantial prison terms for persons convicted of these crimes. Aggressive and effective prosecutions, followed by long sentences, send a clear message that these crimes will not be tolerated and that those engaging in them do so at their peril. The Department intends to increase its efforts against corruption in three ways: first, it will increase awareness of public corruption, of the significant harm it causes and the interest the Department has in combating it at all levels of government; second, the Department will make public corruption investigations and prosecutions a top priority; and third, the Department will increase the number and scope of training events for federal prosecutors and investigators that focus on the handling of corruption investigations and prosecutions.
Investigate, challenge, and prosecute international price fixing cartels.
The Department deters anticompetitive behavior affecting U.S. businesses and consumers by investigating and prosecuting violations of our Nation's antitrust laws. While we remain vigilant in the face of all criminal antitrust activity, we have placed a priority on the successful prosecution of international price fixing cartels. These cartels pose a number of challenges: they are highly sophisticated, increasingly international, significant for the large volumes of commerce involved, and extremely broad in terms of the number of businesses and consumers affected. The Department is committed to meeting these challenges. Successful enforcement of these laws - - which both decreases and deters anticompetitive behavior - - saves U.S. consumers millions of dollars, allows them to receive goods and services of the highest quality at the lowest price, and enables U.S. businesses to compete on a level playing field nationally and internationally.
Investigate and prosecute environmental crimes.
Prosecution remains an important cornerstone of the Department's integrated approach to ensure broad-based environmental compliance. Notably, it is the goal of investigators and prosecutors to discover and prosecute criminals before there has been substantial damage done to the environment, resulting in serious health effects or economic damage to consumers or honest competitors. Deterrence of violations due to criminal enforcement is difficult to measure, but available research indicates that a strong criminal enforcement program deters violations and thereby protects human health, natural resources, endangered species, and the competitive position of legitimate companies. The Department will enhance its capability to convict and deter environmental crimes through training, outreach, and domestic and international cooperation and coordination.
Identify, investigate and prosecute tax fraud.
Each year, noncompliance with the federal tax laws costs the government hundreds of billions of dollars. In addition to its continuing work prosecuting a wide variety of tax crimes, the Department has launched a series of new initiatives to deter noncompliance and help ease the burden of noncompliance on law-abiding taxpayers who pay their fair share of taxes. The Department has redoubled efforts to address tax crime involving income from a legal source -- such as the consultant who reports only part of his income, the restaurant owner who skims from the cash register, or the doctor who keeps two sets of bookkeeping records. The IRS estimates that at least $100 billion in revenue is lost each year through the evasion of taxes on income from legal sources.
The Department will also concentrate on several other areas of noncompliance. For example, it will focus on prosecuting promoters of sham trusts and other illegal schemes designed to avoid taxes; illegal tax protestors who engage in tax evasion schemes, claiming that the income tax is unconstitutional; those who take sham "vows of poverty;" those who harass IRS employees; and taxpayers who use tax haven and other offshore countries to evade United States taxes. The Department's tax attorneys will also work with the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force in prosecuting tax crimes where income is generated by narcotics trafficking.
Key Crosscutting Programs
Attorney General's Council on White Collar Crime. The Council, chaired by the Attorney General, was established by order of the Attorney General in July 1995, replacing its predecessor, the Economic Crime Council, established in 1983. The Council serves as a high-level interagency advisory body to coordinate federal law enforcement efforts and develop new strategies to combat white collar crime. The Council includes senior-level representatives of the Department of Justice; the Department of Treasury; the Environmental Protection Agency; the Securities and Exchange Commission; the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; the Federal Trade Commission; and the President's Council on Integrity and Efficiency. The Council has working-level committees on fraud prevention and consumer protection and subcommittees on identity theft and international white collar crime. It also offers advanced white collar crime training by the Departments of Justice and Treasury. The Council has endorsed and added its support to various economic crime enforcement initiatives, including Internet fraud, counterfeit aircraft parts, counterfeit software, identity theft, pension fraud, and bankruptcy fraud.
National Health Care Fraud and Abuse Task Force. Consisting of senior officials of the Departments of Justice and Health and Human Services, as well as state attorneys general and local district attorneys, the task force discusses policy issues and develops directives to member agencies for implementing initiatives to fight common problems affecting federal and state health care programs.
President's Council on Integrity and Efficiency and Executive Council on Integrity and Efficiency (PCIE/ECIE). The President's Council on Integrity and Efficiency and Executive Council on Integrity and Efficiency (PCIE/ECIE) is composed of Inspectors General (IG) of various agencies of the Executive Branch. Established by a 1996 Executive Order, the Integrity Committee for the PCIE/ECIE handles criminal allegations against IGs and their senior staffs. Investigative procedures for the Integrity Committee were drafted in 1997 with the assistance of the Department. The procedures provide for coordination with the Department in this sensitive area, including initial DOJ review of allegations for possible criminal prosecution.
Strategic Objective 2.5 CRIMES AGAINST CHILDREN AND THE EXPLOITABLE -- Combat crimes against children and other vulnerable victims of violence and exploitation.
The criminal victimization of children impacts not only the victims but also their families, community, and society at large. Children, because of their legal and social vulnerabilities, may be victimized in a variety of ways involving physical and sexual abuse. Many of the individuals who prey on children are not first-time offenders, but rather serial offenders who target children as a matter of preference and who may have traveled interstate during the commission of multiple criminal offenses. Because of these vulnerabilities and the potential for long-term harm caused by this victimization, society demands that children receive appropriate protection. A rapid and effective response to crimes against children (CAC) incidents could literally mean life or death for a victim. Primary areas of the FBI's investigation of CAC involve kidnaping and non-family child abductions; domestic and international parental kidnaping; sexual exploitation of children; and sexual or physical abuse of a minor on a Government reservation.
Strategies to Achieve the Objective
Strengthen our nationwide capability to respond quickly and effectively to crimes against children.
The Department will continue to provide leadership and technical program support to ensure that our nationwide ability to respond quickly and effectively to crimes against children is strengthened. The Department has initiated several major programs to combat crimes against children, undertaking efforts in close cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. For example, the FBI's National Crime Information Center (NCIC) system now allows state and local law enforcement agencies to "flag" entries to its computerized system when a child is missing under suspicious circumstances or may be in danger. NCIC promptly relays this information to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, a non-federal agency that has done landmark work to help endangered children. The Department also continues to support, coordinate, and manage the National Sex Offender Registry. Additionally, the Department's Criminal Division serves as the legal advisor to the Internet Crime against Children Task Forces being funded by a grant program from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.
Combat the criminal trafficking of children and other vulnerable victims.
To combat the criminal trafficking of children and other vulnerable victims, more intensified efforts, together with enhanced interagency coordination, are needed. Strategic targeting of outreach and training will lead to an increase in prosecutions in cases involving human trafficking and will enhance policies that impact on victims.
Deploy task forces against trafficking in persons and worker exploitation.
The Criminal Section of the Civil Rights Division, which prosecutes cases of involuntary servitude and related offenses, has increased its efforts to investigate and prosecute trafficking cases, to coordinate assistance to victims, and to engage in intensified outreach to community groups and the broader public in order to identify potential trafficking cases. The Division is also increasing its work with foreign governments to combat trafficking, both by training foreign prosecutors and law enforcement officers in handling trafficking cases and in building its contacts with foreign officials with whom the Division can collaborate on specific cases.
Key Crosscutting Programs
Trafficking Victims Protection Act. The Criminal Section of the Civil Rights Division works closely with the FBI, INS, the Criminal Division, U.S. Attorneys' Offices, Department of Labor, and communities to identify victims, many of whom are women and children, of illegal trafficking and to investigate and prosecute incidents involving criminal violations of these federal civil rights crimes. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act, enacted into law in 2000, expanded the scope of the federal enforcement authority over trafficking offenses. We are continuing our outreach programs in this area, coordinating trafficking enforcement efforts by training local and federal prosecutors in the techniques of prosecuting trafficking cases and providing expert guidance on the newly-enacted Trafficking Victims Protection Act.
FY 2001 -- 2006 Strategic Plan
U.S. Department of Justice