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Our People and Capabilities

Our People and Capabilities

Our people in Houston possess a mix of talents and experience that enable us to help protect you, your families, and your workplaces from a full range of national security threats and major crime problems.

Our employees not only include special agents but also a variety of specialized professionals such as intelligence and financial analysts, investigative specialists, language specialists, paralegals, electronics technicians, and security experts.

Houston ERT Members in Field

Our strength lies in our investigations—the very heart of our operations—and in the collection, analysis, and sharing of intelligence that drives and supports those investigations both locally and nationally. In every case, we work to objectively gather the facts and to develop evidence that can stand up in a court of law. To do that, we can interview witnesses, run undercover operations, analyze financial records, map and manage crime scenes, develop informants, make arrests, conduct surveillance, and gather information and intelligence from around the globe. Our cases today are often complex and multi-faceted, involving a range of public and private sector partners and covering multiple jurisdictions.

Among our specialized capabilities:

Evidence recovery and processing: In Houston, we have Evidence Response Teams (ERTs) made up of special agents and other specialists who are sent to crime scenes to secure the area and exhaustively gather and process physical evidence. Each team member has a forensic specialty and has been extensively trained. They can take photographs, diagram and survey scenes, gather fingerprints, analyze blood stains and splatters, determine bullet trajectories, recover DNA, gather and process the smallest of clues, and more. The teams coordinate with the FBI Laboratory and assist local law enforcement upon request.

Computer forensics:
FBI Houston is one of 16 FBI field offices that has a Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory (RCFL) within its area of operation. The Greater Houston RCFL (GHRCFL) is a full-service digital forensics laboratory and training center devoted entirely to the impartial analysis of digital evidence in support of criminal or national security investigations, including—but not limited to—terrorism, crimes against children, violent crimes, theft or destruction of intellectual property, Internet crime, and fraud. See our Partnerships webpage for more details.

Tactical support and crisis response:
The Houston Field Office SWAT (Specialized Weapons and Tactics) team is one of nine enhanced SWAT teams in the FBI. As such, it is responsible for being prepared to conduct high-risk tactical law enforcement operations within the Houston Field Office territory, in support of other FBI field offices in the southwestern United States, and in support of other major FBI operations nationally and internationally. The Houston SWAT team acts as the tactical arm of the Houston Field Office crisis management team. Our SWAT team trains to develop a high level of individual operator proficiency in firearms, defensive tactics, and arrest techniques. The team trains at the small unit level and has specialized equipment to conduct tactical operations, to include high-risk arrests and hostage rescue.

Bomb recovery and analysis:
We have FBI special agent bomb technicians who conduct bombing investigations. Assisted by similarly trained members of the Houston Joint Terrorism Task Force, they respond to calls of suspicious packages or objects and are deployed nationally and internationally. Our bomb technicians will soon have the assistance of the latest sophisticated robotic diagnostic tools. In addition to their primary mission of investigating, testing, and rendering safe explosive devices, Houston bomb technicians share vital intelligence with local investigators and the U.S. Terrorist Explosive Device Analytical Center. Houston agents are certified instructors, regularly invited to teach at bomb technician schools both at home and abroad.

Hazardous materials:
Terrorist attacks leading up to and including 9/11/2001 have solidified the need to have well trained and proactive weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and Hazardous Evidence Response Team (HERT) personnel. In Houston, we employ a HAZMAT team that includes special agents and professional support staff from all investigative programs. The Houston HERT works closely with WMD program coordinators in assessing potential investigations with a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, or explosives nexus. All team members are highly trained and certified to respond to incidents to provide scientific expertise and consultation on processing contaminated crime scenes. We accomplish this mission by coordinating with our federal, state, and local partners through cooperative and mutually beneficial training programs as well as maintaining technical proficiency through participation in overseas and domestic real world missions.

FBI language specialists play a vital role in the translation, transcription, reporting, and analysis of materials with criminal and national security ramifications. Language specialists apply their unique skills and talents in support of a broad spectrum of investigations, including drug trafficking, public corruption, kidnappings, organized crime, interstate criminal activity, terrorism, and foreign counterintelligence. In addition to translating written documents and audio files, language specialists also often join agents on cases, translating during live interviews and contributing to undercover operations. The Houston Field Office is home to the third largest foreign language translation and analysis center in the FBI. If you are interested in a language career with the FBI, visit www.fbijobs.gov.

Training: Houston’s Training Unit works to actively engage both internal employees of the FBI as well as our local and state law enforcement counterparts. Courses that are offered range from tactical to investigative, operational to administrative, and professional development to leadership. We coordinate and processes candidates for the FBI National Academy, Command College, Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar (LEEDS), and the National Executive Institute (NEI). Additionally, Houston has hosted several international training initiatives to combat kidnappings, gang activity, human trafficking, and cyber crimes.

For more information on FBI and its capabilities, see our About Us webpage.