The FBI’s Terrorist Screening Center (TSC) plays a vital role in the fight against terrorism by integrating terrorist information from the law enforcement and intelligence communities, including both domestic and international terrorist information, into a single database. TSC then assures the timely dissemination of the information to the various screening systems of federal agencies; for example, the TSA's no-fly and selectee lists, and the State Department's consular lookout system. The TSC also plays a crucial role in providing actionable intelligence to state and local law enforcement agencies.
The FBI’s National Security Branch, of which TSC is now a part, was established in 2005 and combines the Bureau’s resources in the areas of counterterrorism, counterintelligence and weapons of mass destruction, smoothly integrating the disciplines of intelligence and investigations. The FBI is a partner with 15 other federal agencies in the National Counterterrorism Center or NCTC where experts sit side by side with one mission: avoiding another major terrorist attack on U.S. soil.
With the Department of Homeland Security and other federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, the Department is engaged in a collaborative process to improve intelligence sharing and ultimately increase the national ability to detect, prevent and solve crimes while safeguarding our homeland. Through the Global Justice Information Sharing Initiative, the Department has led efforts to merge the various elements of an ideal information and intelligence sharing project through fusion centers, and has created national standards for the operation of these centers, defining how and when intelligence should be shared.
On September 9, 2009, the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) convened a meeting of representatives from 70 foundations that support criminal and juvenile justice reform. The purpose of the meeting was two-fold: first, more broadly, to identify opportunities and leverage options for DOJ and foundation partnerships in this time of economic hardship; and, second, to encourage specific foundations interest in two or three Department priorities, e.g., children exposed to violence, indigent defense and tribal issues. The Attorney General gave remarks to the group.
OJP continues to reach out to a broad range of private funders with interests in such justice-related topics as prevention; law enforcement; prosecution, indigent defense, and court administration; juvenile justice; violence and victimization; and corrections and offender reentry.. We are actively encouraging informal discussions on more specific opportunities for leveraging funding.
DOJs litigating components collaborate with a broad range of governmental agencies at the federal, state and local levels, as well as with non-governmental groups and stakeholders, in both routine daily contacts as well as targeted task forces, working groups and conferences. The Antitrust Division has recently begun collaborating with the USDA to review potential anticompetitive practices affecting farms nationwide. The Civil Divisions Intellectual Property staff trains representatives from client agencies, and participates in a DOJ effort to review proposed trade agreement provisions to advise of conflicts with U.S. law. The Criminal Division similarly works with foreign partners on issues involving transnational crime.
Some task forces combine both civil and criminal tools to attack specific problems; for example, the Healthcare Fraud Prevention & Enforcement Action Team or HEAT, the National Procurement Fraud Task Force and the Medicare Fraud Task Force. The Environment and Natural Resources Divisions Indian Resources Section represents the United States in its trust capacity on behalf of Indian tribes and their members, and routinely files and defends cases for the benefit of tribes, consulting with particular tribes as appropriate. Working with the Office of Tribal Justice and the Criminal Division, ENRD has conducted extensive nationwide tribal consultation on development of proposed legislation on Indian gaming.
Outreach to particular communities
The Community Relations Unit of the FBIs Office of Public Affairs has engaged in efforts to build trust and open a constructive dialogue with American Arab, Muslim, Sikh, Somali and South Asian communities. The primary purpose is to enhance public trust and confidence in the FBI by fostering the FBIs relationship with various communities by educating members of the public on how they can help protect themselves and their communities. These engagement efforts are designed to build trust that can assist in opening doors, facilitating the overall mission of the FBI because they are more likely to report a crime, return a telephone call or respond positively to being approached by an FBI special agent.
The Civil Rights Division hosts a bi-monthly meeting that brings together leaders from the Muslim, Arab, Sikh and South Asian communities with officials from the Departments of Justice, including the FBI, Homeland Security, Treasury, Transportation and State along with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to discuss the civil rights issues that have faced these communities since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The idea behind the meeting is to bring together a wide range of federal agencies whose policies impact these communities and allow the communities to raise a range of cross-cutting issues in a single forum. Issues addressed have included hate crime prosecution and federal anti-discrimination laws, watch lists and no-fly lists, profiling by law enforcement, visa and immigration issues, among many others.
The Department engages with partners all across the country to ensure that taxpayer funds are spent for the purposes for which they are intended. In addition to the lawsuits that the Department itself files, which recover billions of dollars, the Department's Civil Division and Office of the Inspector General are undertaking ambitious outreach programs to protect the public's investment in the Recovery Act. They are providing training for auditors and investigators and working closely with whistleblowers who file lawsuits to recover fraudulently obtained government funds. So far, the Office of the Inspector General alone has met with grant administrators and investigators from 40 states, D.C., Puerto Rico and the Virginia Islands. These efforts are critical to ensuring that the Recovery Act fulfills its purpose, and the Department will continue them as Recovery Act funds continue to be put to use.