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Jul 25, 2014 12:35 PM

The Transnational Gang Threat, Part 3

Although not technically members of the Central American Community Impact Exchange program (CACIE), the four interpreters from our Language Services Section who recently took part in the two-week ...

The Transnational Gang Threat, Part 3


Although not technically members of the Central American Community Impact Exchange program (CACIE), the four interpreters from our Language Services Section who recently took part in the two-week session were instrumental to the group’s success, ensuring that the police officers, pastors, social workers, and community activists from Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, Belize, Costa Rica, Panama, and the U.S. were all on the same page.

A fundamental goal of CACIE is to facilitate an international coalition between law enforcement and communities to fight violent transnational gangs like MS-13 and 18th Street. The ability for partners from different countries to communicate—to share information and ideas—is central to that goal.

Full story

Jul 22, 2014 06:00 PM

The Transnational Gang Threat, Part 2

Our series continues on the Central American Community Impact Exchange (CACIE) program, which aims to bring law enforcement and community groups together to develop programs that keep youths from ...

The Transnational Gang Threat, Part 2


Our series continues on the Central American Community Impact Exchange (CACIE) program, which aims to bring law enforcement and community groups together to develop programs that keep youths from being recruited by gangs. For that concept to work, the 22 CACIE participants from Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, Belize, Costa Rica, Panama, and the U.S must develop strong relationships so that when the two-week class is completed, lasting partnerships can be formed.

Full story

Jul 18, 2014 05:00 PM

The Transnational Gang Threat, Part 1

FBI.gov recently accompanied a group of 22 community leaders and law enforcement officers from the U.S. and six Central American countries as they took part in CACIE—the Central American Community ...

The Transnational Gang Threat, Part 1


FBI.gov recently accompanied a group of 22 community leaders and law enforcement officers from the U.S. and six Central American countries as they took part in CACIE—the Central American Community Impact Exchange program—an innovative training program whose mission is to deter young people from joining violent transnational gangs. During the program, participants spent time in Washington, D.C.; at the FBI’s training facility in Quantico, Virgina; in Durham, North Carolina; and in Guatemala.

Full story

Jul 15, 2014 05:30 PM

A Byte Out of History: 50th Anniversary of the FBI’s Jackson Field Office

A half-century after the tumultuous Freedom Summer of 1964, we look back at history and circumstances that led to the creation of our Jackson Field Office, which has played a vital role in the ...

A Byte Out of History: 50th Anniversary of the FBI’s Jackson Field Office


Fifty years ago this summer, Mississippi was at the front and center of our country’s civil rights struggles, with cases such as the June 21, 1964 disappearance of three civil rights workers becoming issues of national concern. Less than two weeks later—and in response to that tragic event—the FBI opened its Jackson Field Office.

Full story

Jul 15, 2014 04:00 PM

FBI Cyber Executive Briefs Congress on Joint Efforts to Bust Botnets

FBI Assistant Director Joseph Demarest testified before a Senate subcommittee today on cyber criminal threats and the FBI’s progress on campaigns to disrupt and disable significant botnets.

FBI Cyber Executive Briefs Congress on Joint Efforts to Bust Botnets

Computer linked to other computersFBI Assistant Director Joseph Demarest testified before a Senate subcommittee today on cyber criminal threats and the FBI’s progress on campaigns to disrupt and disable significant botnets (robot networks). Demarest, who said that the use of botnets is on the rise, explained that they can be used in organized criminal activity, for covert intelligence collection, to attack Internet-connected critical infrastructure, and as weapons in ideology campaigns to instigate fear, intimidation, or public embarrassment.

Demarest highlighted the Bureau’s Operation Clean Slate, an aggressive approach to disrupt and dismantle the most significant botnets threatening the U.S. economy and our national security by targeting the criminal coders who create them. This initiative, according to Demarest, incorporates various entities, including the FBI and our federal partners, international partners, major Internet service providers, the U.S. financial sector, and other private sector cyber stakeholders. He also discussed several recent successes in combating the botnet threat, including actions taken against the Citadel botnet—responsible for the loss of more than a half-billion dollars—and the GameOver Zeus botnet—believed to be responsible for millions of dollars of losses.

Testifying alongside Demarest at the hearing was Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell, newly confirmed head of the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division.

Full testimony | More on botnets

Jul 11, 2014 04:00 PM

Dog Fighting Ringleader Pleads Guilty

A key player in a high-stakes dog fighting and gambling enterprise based in Alabama with activities spanning several nearby states recently pled guilty in the case; nine others have also admitted ...

Dog Fighting Ringleader Pleads Guilty

Dog Behind Chain-Link Fence

A key player in a high-stakes dog fighting and gambling enterprise based in Alabama with activities spanning several nearby states recently pled guilty in the case; nine others have also admitted guilt. The takedown of the criminal enterprise resulted in the rescue of 367 dogs.

Full story

Jul 10, 2014 03:00 PM

FBI Jackson Division Celebrates 50th Anniversary

A ceremony held at FBI Jackson Headquarters today recognized the contributions the division has made in the 50 years since Director J. Edgar Hoover traveled to Mississippi to open the office on July ...

FBI Jackson Division Celebrates 50th Anniversary


The Freedom Summer of 1964 was the crux of a tumultuous time in America’s history, and much of the civil rights-related struggle was happening in Mississippi. The disappearance of three civil rights workers in a case that came to be known as Mississippi Burning garnered national attention, and the FBI did not turn a blind eye.

On July 10, 1964, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover personally traveled to Mississippi to re-open the FBI’s Jackson Field Office, which had been closed since 1946, to search for the missing civil rights workers and to more effectively address the increasing civil rights conflict within the state.


A half-century later, we recognize the Jackson Field Office for the pivotal role it has played over the years. At a ceremony held at the Jackson Division’s headquarters today, FBI and state officials joined civil rights era figures, FBI employees, law enforcement partners, and others to celebrate the occasion.

“Today, we mark more than just a 50-year anniversary,” said FBI Director James Comey in a video message for the event. “We honor an office that opened during some of the darkest times in our country’s history. We recognize agents who bore a heavy responsibility—agents who lived up to that responsibility for every citizen, of every color.”

FBI Deputy Director Mark Giuliano, who spoke at the ceremony, expounded on this sentiment. “As we mark the anniversary of the Jackson Division, and of the Freedom Summer, we must recognize every single person who marched for freedom, even at great risk to their own safety,” he said. “Every person who took important and meaningful steps, both large and small, toward liberty and justice for all.”


The concept of liberty and justice for all is of utmost importance to the Bureau. “That is what the Jackson office stands for,” Giuliano added. “It is what the FBI stands for. And we are proud to be part of America’s history—and its future.”

Check back next week for an in-depth article reflecting on the historical circumstances that led to the opening of the Jackson office in 1964 and on how that office has—from the beginning—played a vital role in the FBI’s civil rights program.

Resources:

Jul 08, 2014 03:00 PM

FBI, Interpol Host Critical Infrastructure Symposium

FBI Director James Comey was in Miami yesterday, where he spoke on the importance of partnerships at the opening of the four-day International Law Enforcement Critical Infrastructure Symposium. The ...

FBI, Interpol Host Critical Infrastructure Symposium


FBI Director James Comey was in Miami yesterday, where he spoke on the importance of partnerships at the opening of the four-day International Law Enforcement Critical Infrastructure Symposium. The event, co-hosted by the FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Directorate and Interpol, has drawn senior law enforcement officials from more than 90 countries to explore and share best practices for managing WMD and counterterrorism threats targeted against critical infrastructure and to identify common approaches to protect infrastructure and key resources. Also participating in the symposium are domestic first responders, corporate security officers, and other U.S. federal partners.

Full story

Jun 26, 2014 03:30 PM

Operators of MyRedbook.com Arrested, Sites Seized

Eric Omuro, of Mountain View, California, also known as “Red,” was arrested following his indictment by a federal grand jury on charges involving the use of the mail and the Internet to facilitate ...

Operators of MyRedbook.com Arrested, Websites Seized


Eric Omuro, of Mountain View, California, also known as “Red,” was arrested on June 25, 2014, following his indictment by a federal grand jury on charges involving the use of the mail and the Internet to facilitate prostitution and multiple counts of money laundering. The FBI seized the domain names sfredbook.com and myredbook.com, which were allegedly used to facilitate prostitution in the San Francisco Bay Area and throughout the West Coast region of the United States.

According to information available on the publicly accessible website as of the date of its seizure by the FBI, myredbook.com purported to provide “Escort, Massage, and Strip Club Reviews.” Instead, however, the website hosted advertisements for prostitutes, complete with explicit photos, lewd physical descriptions, menus of sexual services, hourly and nightly rates, and customer reviews of the prostitutes’ services.

The website used acronyms for numerous sex acts, which were defined in graphic detail in the website’s “Terms and Acronyms” section. Although the website could be accessed for free, myredbook.com advertised fees for premier placement of prostitution advertisements and for “VIP Memberships,” which purportedly allowed customers access to “private forums” and heightened capabilities to search reviews of the prostitution services.

Full press release

Jun 26, 2014 03:00 PM

Twitter Chat Focuses on Child Sex Trafficking

In the FBI’s first Twitter chat, the head of the Violent Crimes Against Children section yesterday answered questions from users of the social media platform about the Bureau’s efforts to fight human ...

Twitter Chat Focuses on Child Sex Trafficking


In the FBI’s first Twitter chat, the head of the Violent Crimes Against Children Section yesterday answered questions from users of the social media platform about the Bureau’s efforts to fight human trafficking and help victims.

Special Agent Michael Harpster talked about how the FBI partners with state and local authorities in law enforcement efforts like last week’s Operation Cross Country VIII, which resulted in the recovery of 168 victims of trafficking and the arrests 281 pimps.

The hour-long question-and-answer session generated dozens of questions that users sent to the Twitter hashtag #OCC8 that we established for the event. A transcript of the conversation can be seen below. The questioners’ identities and some Twitter-specific symbols have been removed, but the full conversation can be viewed on the FBI’s Twitter page or by using the hashtag #OCC8

Transcript:

Welcome to our FBI chat. I’m Michael Harpster, Violent Crimes Against Children section. I look forward to your questions at #OCC8.

First, I’d like to thank our state and local partners. Together, we had a great accomplishment with [Operation Cross Country VIII].

Q: What steps are you taking to address the demand? Any links you can provide?

Harpster: Through our 69 child exploitation task forces we address all aspects of exploitation to include demand.

Q. What’s #OCC8?

Harpster: #OCC8 was an FBI-led nationwide law enforcement operation targeting child sex trafficking. Related Link

Harpster: #OCC8 isn’t a one-time deal. Our Innocence Lost National Initiative combats domestic child sex trafficking daily.

Q. Thanks for taking questions. Do you know the origins of the victims? Were they trafficked into the US? Inter-State smuggling?

Harpster: Victims come from all demographics, from small communities to large cities. Many are trafficked across state lines.

Q. What do you think the most important step is to ending child exploitation? 

Harpster: Community involvement, awareness, education, and reporting are critical to stopping exploitation. Call FBI or 1-800-THE-LOST

Q. Thank you for doing the right thing. How is our government helping these victims. How can we help them too?

Harpster: Victim specialists provide crisis intervention, an array of services, and follow-up care.  Related Link

Q. Were many of these pimps armed and/or dangerous? Were any of them aware of the child rescue operation? 

Harpster: Yes, many pimps have violent criminal histories. To our knowledge, they were not aware of the ongoing operation. 

Q. Can you elaborate on what sort of collaboration with nonprofits, if any, you find most helpful to your work? 

Harpster: We have strong partnerships with @MissingKids, @restoreblackbow, and many other agencies and NGOs. 

Q. Are you including state and local law enforcement? If so what steps are they taking too end the problem?

Harpster: For this operation we had almost 400 agencies participate. We partner with nearly 600 task force officers daily.

Q. Hope they answer why they put minors swept up in these raids in handcuffs.

Harpster: At recovery, a child may not be fully identified or may have a warrant. Also, for their safety during the initial response. 

Harpster: If you have been exploited or have info regarding exploited children, contact your local FBI or @MissingKids.

Harpster: The primary focus of #OCC8 was the safe recovery of child victims, providing services, and raising awareness of child sexual exploitation.

Harpster: We’d like to thank our digital billboard partners for helping the #FBI get the message out that “America’s children are not for sale.” 

Harpster: Thanks for joining me and being part of the conversation. I wish I had time to answer more questions. For more info visit @FBI