August 5, 2015

Statement from Paul Abbate, Special Agent in Charge FBI Detroit Field Office

As stated in the June 4, 2015 release from the FBI National Press Office, the FBI routinely uses aviation assets in support of lawful, predicated investigations targeting specific individuals and, when requested and appropriate, in support of state and local law enforcement. The use of aviation assets is strictly regulated and governed through rigorous oversight by DOJ and in full compliance with the Attorney General Guidelines and the FBI’s Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide. The FAA is fully aware and supportive of this practice.

Contrary to the suggestion of some recent media reporting, the FBI does not employ aviation assets to conduct mass surveillance nor to target specific communities. Neither does the FBI monitor lawfully protected First Amendment activity. Further, the FBI Detroit Field Office is not aware of any specific or credible threats within the local Detroit Metropolitan area. As always, we continue to work hard each and every day in cooperation with our partners to prevent harm to the citizens and communities we serve. We also urge ongoing vigilance on the part of everyone and strongly request that any suspicious activity be reported to law enforcement authorities.

- Related press release