Special Agent in Charge Laughlin
Laura M. Laughlin—Special Agent in Charge
Ms. Laughlin is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a major in English and a minor in Chemistry. She also completed graduate course work in Anatomy at Hahnemann University in Philadelphia.
Ms. Laughlin entered on duty as a special agent with the FBI in February 1985. Her investigative assignments include postings in Portland, Omaha, New York, and the District of Columbia. Her duties as a case agent involved white-collar crime matters, such as fraud against the government, financial institution fraud, public corruption/organized crime, as well as reactive investigations such as bank robberies, violent crimes, fugitives, and kidnappings.
While assigned to the New York office, Ms. Laughlin was a team leader on a public corruption/organized crime investigation. In that case, associates of the La Cosa Nostra (the Mafia) bribed city health officials on a city service contract to transport foster children throughout the five boroughs. Losses to the city were approximately $5 million.
While serving in D.C., Ms. Laughlin was assigned to assist Judge Frederick B. Lacey—pursuant to his appointment by Attorney General William P. Barr in October 1992—to investigate issues related to the Banca Nazionale del Lavoro (BNL). She was then selected as the case agent on an investigation of events surrounding the 1992 election campaign of Governor William J. Clinton and U.S. President George H. W. Bush, for which the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia at the time, Joseph E. diGenova, was appointed as the independent counsel by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.
In January 1995, Ms. Laughlin was promoted to FBI Headquarters and served as a supervisory special agent in the Public Corruption Unit. She was selected for a special assignment in January 1996 to oversee corruption and drug trafficking cases along the southwest border.
In February 1997, Ms. Laughlin was assigned as senior manager on the Campaign Financing Task Force during President William J. Clinton's administration. She was promoted in October 1997 to the Washington Field Office as the supervisor of a governmental fraud squad. In January 2000, Ms. Laughlin was promoted to chief of the Financial Institution Fraud Unit, where she worked with her U.S. Customs Service counterparts to develop a joint intelligence center for intellectual property rights matters. In April 2001, Ms. Laughlin was promoted to assistant special agent in charge in Philadelphia, managing office resources for white-collar and cyber crime investigations. Ms. Laughlin was promoted in October 2003 to chief of the Public Integrity/Civil Rights Section, where she managed the FBI's public corruption, governmental fraud, and civil rights programs. She was transferred in June 2004 to assume the duties as chief of the Criminal Intelligence Section, where she was responsible for eight units consisting of 112 intelligence analysts and 11 agents. In December 2004, Ms. Laughlin was promoted to her current position as special agent in charge of the FBI's Seattle Division.
In her assignment as the Seattle Division’s special agent in charge, Ms. Laughlin’s area of responsibility is the state of Washington, which encompasses 10 resident agencies and a staff of approximately 300 personnel. Ms. Laughlin has been instrumental in forging relationships with her federal, state, local, and tribal partners through the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPC). With the support of WASPC, Ms. Laughlin set precedent by establishing a fusion center within the Seattle Division, which has been recognized by both the state of Washington and FBI Headquarters as a best practice for intelligence sharing.