Public Corruption

The FBI’s top criminal investigative priority poses a fundamental threat to our national security and way of life.

It can affect how well our borders are secured, how verdicts are handed down in courts, and how public infrastructure like roads and schools are built. It also takes a significant toll on the public’s pocketbooks; it's estimated that public corruption costs the U.S. government and the public billions of tax dollars each year.

Our public corruption program focuses on:

  • Investigating violations of federal law by public officials at the federal, state, and local levels of government.
  • Overseeing the nationwide investigation of allegations of fraud related to federal government procurement, contracts, and federally funded programs.
  • Combating the threat of public corruption along the nation’s borders and points of entry to decrease the country’s vulnerability to drug and weapons trafficking, alien smuggling, espionage, and terrorism.
  • Addressing environmental crime, election fraud, and matters concerning the federal government procurement, contracts, and federally funded programs.

The FBI is uniquely situated to combat corruption, with the skills and capabilities to run complex undercover operations and surveillance.

We also work with a number of federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies to combat public corruption, including:

  • The Department of Justice
  • Offices of inspectors general in different agencies
  • Law enforcement agencies’ internal affairs divisions
  • Federal, state, and local law enforcement and regulatory investigative agencies
  • State and county prosecutor’s offices.

Asset Forfeiture

Asset forfeiture is a powerful tool used by law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, against criminals and criminal organizations to deprive them of their property used illegally and their ill-gotten gains through seizure of these assets. It is also used to compensate victims of crime. Learn more about the FBI’s asset forfeiture program and to see forfeiture in action.