Department of State
The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) Office of Anti-Crime Programs helps strengthen criminal justice systems and the abilities of law enforcement agencies around the world to combat transnational criminal threats before they extend beyond their borders and impact our homeland. Through its international programs, as well as in coordination with other INL offices, other bureaus of the Department of State, U.S. government agencies, and multilateral organizations, the INL Office of Anti-Crime Programs addresses a broad cross-section of law enforcement and criminal justice sector areas including: counter-narcotics; drug demand reduction; money laundering; financial crime; terrorism financing; transnational crime; smuggling of goods; illegal migration; trafficking in persons; border controls; document security; wildlife trafficking; corruption; cybercrime; organized crime; intellectual property rights; police academy development; and assistance to law enforcement, judiciaries, and prosecutors.
In 2015, INL-funded training was delivered to many countries. Supported by and in coordination with the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the U.S. Department of the Treasury, INL and the State Department’s Bureau for Counterterrorism work collectively to implement a multi-million dollar training and technical assistance program designed to develop or enhance the capacity of countries which are vulnerable to being used for financing terrorism. The capacity to thwart the funding of terrorism is linked to a robust AML regime. In 2015, this collaboration provided a variety of law enforcement, regulatory, and criminal justice programs worldwide. This integrated approach includes assistance with the drafting of legislation and regulations that comport with international standards; the training of law enforcement, the judiciary, and financial sector regulators; and the development of financial intelligence units (FIUs) capable of collecting, analyzing, and disseminating financial information to foreign analogs. Courses and training have been provided in the United States as well as in the jurisdictions and regions where the programs are targeted.
The State Department, in conjunction with DHS’ Homeland Security Investigations and the Department of Treasury, has supported the establishment and development of eight trade transparency units (TTUs) in the Americas. The misuse of trade is often used in counter-valuation and is the common denominator in most of the world’s informal money and value transfer and remittance systems. These informal schemes are vulnerable to exploitation not only by money launderers but also terrorism financiers. TTUs, designed to help identify significant disparities in import and export trade documentation, continue to enjoy success in combating money laundering and other trade-related financial crimes. Similar to the Egmont Group of FIUs that examines and exchanges information gathered through financial transparency reporting requirements, an international network of TTUs fosters the sharing of disparities in trade data among countries and is a potent weapon in combating customs fraud and trade-based money laundering.
In 2015, INL also provided support to the UN Global Programme against Money Laundering (GPML). In addition to sponsoring money laundering technical assistance workshops and providing short-term training courses, GPML’s mentoring program provides advisors on a long-term basis to specific countries or regions. GPML mentors have focused on providing support and assistance to regional asset recovery networks in South Africa and South America, as well as promoting the establishment of similar asset forfeiture support networks in West Africa and the Asia Pacific region. The resident mentor based in South Africa continued to implement and monitor the Prosecutor Placement Program, an initiative aimed at building the capacity of prosecutors involved in asset forfeiture actions. The GPML mentor in Central Africa focused on assisting the Task Force on Money Laundering in Central Africa (GABAC) to become a FATF associate member. The GPML mentors in Central Asia and the Mekong Delta continued assisting the countries in those regions to develop viable AML/CFT regimes. The Mekong Delta mentor has recently begun working with Burma’s government to assist in the development of such a regime. GPML continues to develop interactive computer-based programs for distribution, translated into several languages.
INL has established and continues to support programs incorporating intermittent or full-time legal, FIU, asset forfeiture, and law enforcement mentors at selected overseas locations. These advisors, be they U.S. government or GPML, work directly with host governments to assist in the creation, implementation, and enforcement of AML/CFT measures. INL also provided several federal agencies funding to conduct multi-agency financial crime training assessments and develop specialized training in specific jurisdictions to combat money laundering.
INL continues to provide significant financial and substantive support for many of the anti-money laundering bodies around the globe. In addition to sharing mandatory membership dues to FATF and the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) with the U.S. Department of the Treasury and DOJ, INL is a financial and/or participative supporter of FATF-style regional bodies’ secretariats and training programs, including the Council of Europe’s MONEYVAL, the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF), the Intergovernmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA), the Financial Action Task Force of Latin America (GAFILAT), the APG, GABAC, and the Eastern and Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG).
INL also supports the capacity building efforts by the Organization of American States (OAS) Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD) Experts Group to Control Money Laundering and the OAS Counter-Terrorism Committee through program design, sustained engagement, and funding. OAS/CICAD has successfully improved the capacity of investigators, prosecutors, and judges throughout Latin America through its mock investigation and trial workshops and its confiscated criminal assets management programs. OAS/CICAD also continues to work with FIUs.
INL supports additional efforts, including those focusing on non-bank financial institutions and the issue of remittances, by working with other bureaus within DOS, GPML, other international organizations, and other countries.
As in previous years, INL training programs continue to focus on both interagency bilateral and multilateral efforts. When possible, we seek participation with our partner countries’ law enforcement, judicial, and central bank authorities. The goal is to design and provide training and technical assistance for countries that demonstrate the political will to develop viable AML/CFT regimes. This allows for extensive synergistic dialogue and exchange of information. INL’s approach has been used successfully in Africa, Asia, the Pacific, Central and South America, and Eastern Europe. INL also provides funding for many of the regional training and technical assistance programs offered by the various law enforcement agencies, including assistance to the International Law Enforcement Academies.