The FBI’s New York Office Briefs Citizens’ Academy Members on Counterterrorism and Criminal Matters
|FBI New York October 14, 2010|
On September 29, 2010, Assistant Director in Charge (ADIC) Janice K. Fedarcyk and Special Agent in Charge (SAC) Gregory Fowler addressed the FBI New York’s Citizens’ Academy and provided a general overview on counterterrorism matters and related subjects of interest. The meeting’s agenda incorporated discussions of FBI operations in regard to cases and topics recently featured in the media. Examples included New Year’s Eve in Times Square, the Zazi terror plot, and terrorist attacks in Uganda and Fort Hood.
“Eleven out of 20 terrorist attacks in the United States since 9/11 were attempted in New York. The public can play an important role in preventing future terrorist attacks by reporting suspicious behavior to law enforcement,” SAC Fowler stated.
The academy’s overall purpose is to establish and foster relationships and understanding between the FBI and the greater New York community. The academy has given the public, civic, religious, and business leaders, as well as media executives, the opportunity to find out how the FBI operates and what role the public can play. Nationally, the FBI has offered the Citizens’ Academy program for the past 15 years, providing a detailed inside view to 10,000 community leaders on how the Bureau operates.
On Saturday, October 3, Citizens’ Academy members and alumni were given the opportunity to step outside the classroom setting and attend a firearms training session at Fort Dix, New Jersey. Attendees were accompanied by FBI personnel who demonstrated proper handling procedures before they were able to experience shooting a variety of firearms. Each year, FBI Citizens’ Academy members participate in this activity, which broadens the scope of their experience in the program.
The following Wednesday, October 6, SAC Diego Rodriguez and Assistant Special Agent in Charge (ASAC) Peter Grupe welcomed the academy back to the FBI’s New York office and introduced a team of experts who provided an advanced overview of the Criminal Division. Supervisory Special Agent (SSA) Rachel Rojas spoke about identity theft and described various precautions law abiding citizens can take to protect themselves. SSA David Chaves briefed the class on the various types of securities fraud cases, from insider trading and accounting fraud to ponzi schemes. SSA Michael Rosanova talked about the enormously increasing numbers of health care fraud cases in recent years and the many challenges faced by FBI agents handling those cases.
During this meeting, the Citizens’ Academy Class of 2010 also elected their leadership team.
The fourth Wednesday night meeting of this year’s Citizens’ Academy took place on October 13. Special guest speaker Jack Garcia talked about his role as an undercover FBI agent posing as an Italian mobster named Jack Falcone. Garcia, now retired, engaged the audience with stories from a career of undercover work with the FBI and details about what it was like to bring down members of the Gambino crime family. Garcia’s story has been made into a book, “Making Jack Falcone: An Undercover FBI Agent Takes Down a Mafia Family,” and is slated to become a major motion picture.
The graduates of our Citizens' Academies enable the FBI to stay better attuned to local community needs and concerns. The program also provides an opportunity for the FBI to keep communities informed and dispel any myths and misunderstandings about the Bureau. Citizens’ Academy alumni chapters work directly with the FBI on a wide range of public safety initiatives. If you’re interested in applying to attend a Citizens’ Academy, please contact your local field office.
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