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May 01, 2015 04:00 PM

Community Partners Recognized

Today at FBI Headquarters, 57 individuals and organizations from around the nation were recognized by Director James Comey for making extraordinary contributions to education and to the prevention of ...

Community Partners Recognized

Today at FBI Headquarters, 57 individuals and organizations from around the nation were recognized by Director James Comey for making extraordinary contributions to education and to the prevention of crime and violence in their communities.

The Bureau has been presenting its Director’s Community Leadership Awards for more than two decades to ordinary citizens and organizations striving to build stronger, safer, and more cohesive communities, and this latest group of honorees continues to set the bar exceedingly high.

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Apr 29, 2015 04:00 PM

FBI Increases Reward in Effort to Find Killer in Decades-Old Tennessee Murder Case

The Franklin (Tennessee) Police Department and the FBI are, once again, asking for the public’s help in solving the 1991 murder of a 49-year-old mother who was shot and killed by an unknown assailant ...

FBI Increases Reward in Effort to Find Killer in Decades-Old Tennessee Murder Case


The Franklin (Tennessee) Police Department and the FBI are, once again, asking for the public’s help in solving the 1991 murder of a 49-year-old mother who was shot and killed by an unknown assailant or assailants while on the job at a Franklin restaurant. The Bureau just increased its reward in the case to $15,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the individual(s) responsible for the murder.

On February 1, 1991, Peggy Cox was on duty at her drive-through station at a Hardee’s restaurant in Franklin. At approximately 11:45 p.m., she took an order from a customer; when the vehicle drove up to the window, she was shot with a small caliber handgun. She was discovered lying near the drive-through window by a co-worker—her 20-year-old son—who had heard the gunshots. Cox was taken to the hospital, where she died of a single gunshot wound to her neck. Detectives from the Franklin Police Department conducted an extensive investigation but were unable to identify a suspect or a motive, and, over time, the case went cold.

Twenty years later, in 2011, the case was reopened and assigned to a Franklin Police Department detective who is part of a Bureau task force operating out of the Nashville Resident Agency of our Memphis Field Office. The FBI began providing assistance in the case and, in 2014, initially offered a reward of $10,000. It’s our hope that this latest public push by law enforcement in the case leads to someone coming forward with a key piece of information or evidence that results in justice for Peggy Cox and closure for her three children.

Seeking Information poster | Related Wanted by the FBI podcast

Apr 28, 2015 05:15 PM

Death Notification with Compassion

At an event held during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week last week at FBI Headquarters, the Bureau—in conjunction with its partners at Penn State University—announced a new, no-cost training ...

Death Notification with Compassion

At an event held during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week last week at FBI Headquarters, the Bureau—in conjunction with its partners at Penn State University—announced a new, no-cost training website for law enforcement agencies and other first responders responsible for notifying the family members of those who have died suddenly as a result of a crime, an accident, a suicide, or other type of incident.

This initiative was developed to better equip law enforcement personnel, victim advocates, coroners, medical examiners, chaplains, hospital staff, and others who find themselves delivering death notifications to do so with professionalism, dignity, and compassion. Not only because it’s the right thing to do, but also because the way a death notification is made can have a significant impact on a family’s grieving process and on potential future prosecutions. The training is entitled “We Regret to Inform You...” and can be accessed at www.deathnotification.psu.edu.

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Apr 24, 2015 07:00 PM

Justice in Decade-Long Ponzi Scheme

A California businessman who ran a Ponzi scheme for more than a decade was ordered to pay millions in restitution to his victims. And he’ll be doing that from his jail cell, where he’ll be serving ...

Justice in Decade-Long Ponzi Scheme

Cash Pyramid Graphic


For more than decade, up until February 2014, Sacramento businessman (and Ponzi scammer extraordinaire) Deepal Wannakuwatte fooled his investors and his lenders into believing that he and his companies were worthy of their trust and their money. During that time frame, he fraudulently obtained in excess of $230 million from more than 150 victims, including individuals, businesses, government agencies, and financial institutions. Wannakuwatte used this to fund other business ventures, make adequate payments to his investors and lenders to keep the scam going, and line his own pockets.

But on the heels of a joint investigation with the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation and the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General, Wannakuwatte—who pled guilty last year—got his comeuppance: He was ordered by a federal judge last month to pay millions in restitution to his victims. And he’ll be doing that from his jail cell, where he’ll be serving out his 20-year sentence.

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Apr 20, 2015 09:00 AM

2015 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

Every year at this time, the U.S. observes National Crime Victims’ Rights week—promoting victims’ rights and honoring crime victims and those who advocate on their behalf.

2015 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

Every year at this time, the U.S. observes National Crime Victims’ Rights week—promoting victims’ rights and honoring crime victims and those who advocate on their behalf. Millions of Americans each year are victimized by crime—acts of terrorism, violent crime, human trafficking, hate crimes, financial fraud, child abuse, cyber crime, kidnapping, bank robbery...the list goes on. And the FBI’s Office for Victim Assistance (OVA) is responsible for ensuring that victims of crimes investigated by the Bureau are afforded the opportunity to receive the services and notifications they are entitled to and the assistance they need to cope.

The OVA manages the day-to-day operational aspects of our victim assistance program in each of our 56 field offices, where our victim specialists work with those who have suffered physical, emotional, and/or financial harm as a result of a federal crime. In addition, OVA is also responsible for providing training and information that equips FBI agents and other Bureau personnel to work effectively with victims.

Individuals impacted by crime face the daunting task of rebuilding and healing from loss while navigating the criminal justice system—treating them with fairness and respect greatly benefits these victims and allows us to build better cases.

Apr 19, 2015 11:00 AM

Director Comey Speaks at Oklahoma City Bombing Anniversary Event

Director speaks at memorial service marking 20th anniversary of bombing.

Director Comey Speaks at Oklahoma City Bombing Anniversary Event


Speaking this morning at a remembrance ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building bombing in Oklahoma City, FBI Director James Comey noted that as the nation looked on in shock at the senseless act of homegrown terrorism on April 19, 1995, it also witnessed Oklahomans responding with tremendous unity and resolve.

“You were strong,” Comey said. “You were fearless. You understood—even in the face of such terrible hatred—that courage is stronger than fear, love is stronger than hatred, and hope is stronger than grief.”

The ceremony was held at the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum in Oklahoma City and attended by survivors, families of victims, first responders, and dignitaries, including former President Bill Clinton. Comey applauded the outpouring of generosity and spirit by the state’s residents after the bombing, which became known as the Oklahoma Standard.

“We’ve had these dark and damaging moments before, as individuals, as Americans, and as citizens of the world,” Comey said, speaking of the attack on the Murrah building that killed 168 people. “But it is not the moment that defines us. It is not the act itself that shapes our destiny. It is what comes next.”

He told Oklahomans that the bombing has “opened a hole in your heart that will never heal.” And yet, he added, “You have learned much from sorrow. You have learned that life is precious and time is short. You have learned courage and compassion and charity.”

In closing, Comey acknowledged, “There is evil in this world. You know that to be true. You have lived that truth. But know this: We in the FBI will do all that we can—all that we must—to find and stop that evil, so that you never again need to endure such darkness. We will do all that we can to ensure that justice and the rule of law trump savagery and hatred. We will do all that we can to keep you safe,” he said. “That is our standard.”

Director’s full remarks

Apr 16, 2015 03:15 PM

The Oklahoma City Bombing: 20 Years Later

As Oklahoma City and the country prepare to mark the 20th anniversary of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building bombing on April 19, 1995, FBI.gov looks back at the deadliest act of homegrown ...

The Oklahoma City Bombing: 20 Years Later

Side View of Murrah Building After Bombing


As Oklahoma City and the country prepare to mark the 20th anniversary of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building bombing on April 19, 1995, FBI.gov looks back at the deadliest act of homegrown terrorism in the nation’s history through the eyes of special agents who were there and a survivor who continues to honor the victims by sharing her remarkable story.

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Apr 16, 2015 12:00 PM

Director Comey Speaks at Holocaust Museum Event

Calling the Holocaust “the most horrific display in world history of inhumanity,” FBI Director James Comey explained to an audience last night at a United States Holocaust Memorial Museum event why ...

Director Comey Speaks at Holocaust Museum Event


Calling the Holocaust “the most horrific display in world history of inhumanity,” FBI Director James Comey explained to an audience last night at a United States Holocaust Memorial Museum event why the Bureau’s partnership with the museum “matters so very much.”

“Our obligation is to refuse to let bad win,” Comey said during remarks at the Washington, D.C. museum’s 2015 National Tribute Dinner—one of the events commemorating the annual weeklong Days of Remembrance. “There are so many ways to fight evil to ensure it doesn’t hold the field,” Comey said. “This room is full of people who have made that fight their life’s work.”

Comey explained that he requires every new special agent and intelligence analyst to go to the museum as part of their training. “Naturally, I want them to learn about abuse of authority on a breathtaking scale,” he said. “But I want them to confront something more painful and more dangerous—I want them to see humanity and what we are capable of.”

New agents and analysts need to understand “our capacity for moral surrender,” he said. The sick, evil Nazi leaders responsible for the slaughter of millions of Jews “were joined by, and followed by, people who loved their families, took soup to a sick neighbor, went to church, and gave to charity.”

That fact, Comey said, “is the most frightening lesson of all—that our very humanity made us capable—even susceptible—of surrendering our individual moral authority to the group, where it can be hijacked by evil.”

Apr 14, 2015 11:00 AM

Endangered Child Alert: Help Us Identify John Doe 29

The FBI is seeking the public’s help in identifying an unknown male who may have information about the identity and whereabouts of a young girl depicted in a series of photos being sexually abused. ...

Endangered Child Alert: Help Us Identify John Doe 29


The FBI is seeking the public’s help in identifying an unknown male who may have information about the identity and whereabouts of a young girl depicted in a series of photos being sexually abused. The abuse may be ongoing.

The man, dubbed John Doe 29, is not being accused of abusing the girl, but investigators are hoping to interview him about the location of the victim—the ultimate goal is to rescue the child.

John Doe 29 is described as a male with a tan complexion, likely between the ages of 30 and 45, with dark hair. Anyone with information to provide should submit a tip online at tips.fbi.gov or call the FBI’s toll-free tip line at 1-800-CALL-FBI.

Apr 10, 2015 06:00 PM

Violent Gangs: Kidnapping Crew Targeted Criminal Community

The Dominican street gang in Lawrence, Massachusetts must have thought they had the perfect illegal enterprise: kidnap drug dealers, bookmakers, and money launderers, steal their cash and drugs, and ...

Violent Gangs: Kidnapping Crew Targeted Criminal Community

The Dominican street gang in Lawrence, Massachusetts must have thought they had the perfect illegal enterprise: kidnap drug dealers, bookmakers, and money launderers, steal their cash and drugs, and then hold them for ransom—knowing that since the victims were themselves criminals, they and their families would likely never report the abductions. But an FBI task force investigation showed them otherwise.

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