U.S. programs in the Americas play a vital
role in strengthening the region's security environment,
and are helping to establish the principles of transparency
and accountability throughout Latin America and the Caribbean,
says Jonathan Farrar, U.S. deputy assistant secretary of
state for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs
In his May 25 testimony before Congress,
Farrar outlined the scope of U.S. efforts to promote the
rule of law, to combat corruption, and to curb narco-trafficking
throughout the Western Hemisphere. Together with its hemispheric
partners, the United States aims to "disrupt overseas
production and trafficking of illicit drugs," to enhance
overall law-enforcement capabilities, to provide alternative
livelihoods to drug-crop farmers, and to "facilitate
the establishment of stable criminal-justice systems"
while also supporting "grassroots-level initiatives"
that reinforce "a culture of lawfulness" in the
region, Farrar explained.
Because illicit drug trafficking and related
activities pose security threats to the United States and
to the region, the State Department has developed a strategy
to assist the United States' closest neighbors in their
struggles to fight narco-trafficking, narco-terrorism, and
other serious problems, Farrar told lawmakers.
Since September 11, 2001, the State Department
has expanded its programs in the Americas to help tackle
such issues as "financial crime and terrorist financing,
arms trafficking, alien smuggling, cyber crime, and intellectual
property-rights theft," he said. "We also recognized
the need for increased public engagement in improved law
enforcement, anti-corruption, and rule of law as a basis
of democracy and as a deterrent to terrorism."
In the State Department's view, "improving
the professionalism of law enforcement and justice institutions
is a key element in promoting economic, democratic, and
social development" in the hemisphere, Farrar said,
adding that progress in these areas is “critical”
to addressing the root causes of crime, terrorism and other
Weak institutions and lack of government
presence in many parts of the region have left it vulnerable
to the predations of organized crime, so the State Department's
INL bureau has focused much of its attention on the Americas,
Farrar said. "Every country in this hemisphere is threatened
by international drug-trafficking organizations."
INL is addressing the challenge of developing
criminal justice programs that respond to threats faced
by individual countries by working closely with other U.S.
government agencies -- and with host governments in the
region -- to help train police, judges, prosecutors and
other relevant personnel, Farrar reported. He also cautioned
that local circumstances can make some problems more acute:
"Clearly, we face challenges training police in some
countries in which low education levels, cronyism and nepotism,
poor leadership, and corruption are pervasive."
Farrar told legislators that INL is also
working through multilateral organizations such as the Organization
of American States and the United Nations.
The United States, recognizing the Andean
region is the world’s primary source cocaine, is providing
“a comprehensive package of assistance" to Andean
governments, including crop eradication, alternative crop
development and law-enforcement support, Farrar said.
He offered his perspective on U.S. programs
operating in several regional countries, citing Colombia
as an important example of what can be accomplished in a
difficult environment. "The U.S. anti-drug strategy
in Colombia is … undermining the narcotics industry,
while also methodically and decisively extending democracy
and strengthening security throughout Colombia," he
INL’s extensive law-enforcement training
in Colombia "includes training in counternarcotics,
anti-money laundering, forensics, evidence-handling, port
security, contraband detection, organized crime, bomb detection,
asset forfeiture, human rights, anti-corruption, light unit
tactics, pilot and mechanics training, and advanced investigations,"
He also pointed to INL's efforts in Mexico
as among the agency's "most important" programs,
noting, "INL has funded training for Mexican law enforcement
officials at many U.S. law enforcement academies, such as
the FBI Academy." Farrar praised Mexico's Federal Investigations
Agency as "a much more effective law enforcement institution
than its predecessors," and credited Mexican President
Vicente Fox for "important reform efforts" that
helped ensure "the success of INL's program in Mexico."
In sum, the State Department's INL, along
with other U.S. agencies and partner nations around the
world, "have made substantial progress" in reducing
threats to democratic rule and global order, Farrar said,
but, in light of the ongoing challenges in the region, require
"unwavering congressional support" to continue
their activities in furtherance of U.S. and regional interests.
Following is the text of Farrar's remarks,
as prepared for delivery:
"Transparency and the Rule of Law in
Testimony by Jonathan Farrar,
Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for
International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs,
U.S. Department of State
United States House of Representatives,
Committee on International Relations,
Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere
May 25, 2005
Drug and Other Crime Threats to
Chairman Burton, Congressman Menendez, and
other distinguished members of the Subcommittee, the Department
of State appreciates this invitation to discuss one of the
pillars of its foreign policy in the Americas -- promoting
democracy and the rule of law. The Department's mission
statement, in fact, calls on us to "create a more secure,
democratic, and prosperous world for the benefit of the
American people and the international community."
The Bureau of International Narcotics and
Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) is the State Department Bureau
principally responsible for policy development and foreign
assistance in the area of criminal justice, the key sector
of any society that keeps "security" and "democracy"
in balance. However, it is important to stress here that
INL is only one of many players at the Department involved
in rule-of-law and security issues. Likewise, these are
key preoccupations for all of our embassies in the Americas.
I would like to mention in particular the
very energetic efforts by Assistant Secretary Roger Noriega
and the Bureau for Western Hemisphere Affairs (WHA) to promote
rule of law, principles of anti-corruption, and a strong
hemispheric approach to fighting narco-trafficking. WHA
helps provide overall foreign policy direction for the region,
and justice and security rank high in its foreign policy
priorities. Also, WHA oversees the use of Economic Support
Funds (ESF) for justice development and anti-corruption
projects in the Americas. The U.S. Agency for International
Development (USAID) and INL -- the primary program implementers
for this ESF funding -- maintain close and effective coordination
to ensure complementarities among our policies and programs
and to avoid duplication.
The key thrusts of INL's hemispheric strategy
is to work with our U.S. agency and international partners
-- Disrupt overseas production and trafficking
of illicit drugs through counterdrug and anti-crime assistance
and coordination with foreign nations and international
organizations. This includes striking directly at trafficking
organizations by disrupting their operations, arresting
and imprisoning their leaders, and seizing their assets
while destroying illegal drugs at the source. We seek to
blunt the impact of transnational crime on the United States
by working with foreign governments, inter-governmental
groups (e.g., G-8), and with international organizations
(e.g., the United Nations and the Organization of American
States) to set international standards, close off safe-havens
to criminal groups, pool skills and resources, and improve
-- Establish economically viable alternatives
to illegal drug production and improve quality of life.
The enforcement and disruption efforts cannot succeed without
the essential complement of helping to wean growers away
from drug farming through alternative livelihoods.
-- Facilitate the establishment of stable
criminal-justice systems to strengthen international law
enforcement and judicial effectiveness while respecting
human rights, bolster cooperation in legal affairs and societal
support for the rule of law. Much of our work is aimed at
helping partner governments to identify, investigate, and
successfully prosecute criminals and criminal organizations.
In addition to promoting "top-down" reform, we
are also supporting grassroots-level initiatives to promote
a "culture of lawfulness."
This last goal -- the focus of today's discussion
-- is the necessary foundation for achieving success toward
the first two.
Overview: Law Enforcement Trends
The United States has long recognized that
illicit drug trafficking and other forms of transnational
organized crime pose serious threats to the security of
the United States, as well as the security and stability
of other countries or regions. Following September 11, 2001,
international drug and crime threats began to be viewed
in the context of broader security interests, including
terrorism, as well as in relation to social, political and
Transnational criminal enterprises remain
active in a wide range of activities that threaten U.S.
interests and U.S. security -- document forgery, alien smuggling,
global firearms trafficking, money laundering, financial
fraud and counterfeiting, high-tech and computer crimes,
many of which are also linked to terrorism facilitators.
Corruption is a threat to national security,
as it facilitates crime and terrorism, and undermines economic
and democratic development. Drug trafficking and other forms
of organized crime exploit weaknesses in criminal justice
institutions in ways that undermine our interests and those
of our partner nations. Police, being on the front line,
are most vulnerable, but we have seen the same exploitation
of prosecutors, judges, the military and even legislators
-- and in the private sector among bankers, lawyers, journalists
and others. In recognition of the need to confront these
international crime challenges in an integrated manner,
the Foreign Assistance Act was amended in 1986 to add anti-crime
authorities, beyond the existing authorities to fight international
Our predecessor office -- the Bureau of
International Narcotics Matters (INM) -- accomplished much
in terms of mobilizing the Western Hemisphere to combat
drug production and trafficking, but focusing solely on
narcotics hindered us in addressing many of the deep-seated
institutional problems that kept partner-nation police forces
from being effective in combating crime in all of its forms,
including drug trafficking.
The "INM-to-INL" transformation
involved an expansion of our topical interests to include
financial crime and terrorist financing, arms trafficking,
alien smuggling, cyber crime, and intellectual property-rights
theft. The change also included a reassessment of our whole
approach to programs and training. More fundamentally, it
also required us to do a reassessment of our longer-term
interests. Those interests clearly indicated a need to concentrate
on building capable institutions to complement near-term
operations-driven programming. We also recognized the need
for increased public engagement in improved law enforcement,
anti-corruption, and rule of law as a basis of democracy
and as a deterrent to terrorism. Finally, the increasingly
transnational nature of the problem militated in favor of
multilateral engagement -- regionally and internationally.
Under this expanded mandate, and with significantly
increased funding approved by the U.S. Congress, our programs
began to achieve a balance between near-term operational
support and longer-term institution-building, as well as
emphasizing so-called "soft side" sustainable
alternative development, crime prevention and education,
and drug-abuse prevention and treatment programs. INL now
supports a comprehensive range of bilateral, regional, and
global assistance programs that foster cooperation among
states and build up their law enforcement and justice capacities.
Improving the professionalism of law enforcement
and justice institutions is a key element in promoting economic,
democratic, and social development. Moreover, progress in
those areas is critical to cleaning up the environments
from which criminality, terrorism, or other security challenges
Understanding the interplay between security
and development is especially important regarding countries
emerging from instability.
President Bush said in his foreword to the
National Security Strategy of the United States that: "The
events of September 11, 2001, taught us that weak states,
like Afghanistan, can pose as great a danger to our national
interests as strong states. ... Poverty, weak institutions,
and corruption can make weak states vulnerable to terrorist
networks and drug cartels within their borders."
Foreign investment is critical to economic
growth and job creation. However, investors are not going
to invest in areas plagued by crime and violence, or in
areas where they cannot count on the (civil) justice system
to function adequately to protect their business interests,
patents and contract matters, and so forth. The lower the
integrity and capacity of the criminal justice system writ
large, the lower the investment, and the lower the job creation,
which, in turn, can push the desperately poor or the frustrated
young in the direction of criminal activity. We see this
in continued widespread campesino involvement in drug-crop
cultivation in South America and Mexico and, as we are seeing
now in Central America in particular, the rapid expansion
of urban youth into street gangs.
USAID has similarly also broadened its longstanding
programs for foreign law enforcement since 9/11 in the context
of improving governance, including for countries which may
be vulnerable to exploitation by terrorists. Administrator
Franco will address this in his statement.
INL remains unswervingly committed to its
core missions of protecting the United States from illicit
drug production and trafficking, as well as other transnational
crime. Every country in this hemisphere is threatened by
international drug-trafficking organizations. Corruption
and intimidation fueled by drug organizations' substantial
resources are subverting democratic institutions and the
rule of law, undermining stability, distorting economic
development, and even -- in some cases -- supporting terrorism.
While this is more obvious in producing countries like Colombia
or Peru, it also takes the form of an "opportunistic
virus" in the "transit countries" in Mexico,
Central America and the Caribbean -- seeking to operate
where justice sectors are vulnerable.
In response, INL has begun work on a transit-zone
strategy to address threats in these areas. With the increase
in crime related to narcotics comes the threat of narco-corruption
and its potentially nefarious effects on law enforcement,
political, and business institutions. Adding to this challenge
is the increasing threat in the region from organized street
In an effort to reinforce the anti-corruption
program assistance and training we are providing to partner
nations, the Administration is also making effective use
of Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act
to revoke or refuse issuance of visas to foreign officials
implicated in corruption. Recently two high-level politicians
in Nicaragua fell under this section of the law as being
ineligible for visas to the United States. The revocations
sent a strong message to corrupt officials everywhere that
such abuses of authority will not be tolerated.
As a result of these connections among drug
and other crimes with instability, administration of justice
and law enforcement reform programs must, in most cases,
be conducted in tandem with strong counternarcotics and
The challenge is to develop criminal justice
programs that respond to the threats faced by partner nations.
We also coordinate with programs administered by WHA, USAID,
and law enforcement agencies.
Oversight of INL's international police
programs in Latin America and the Caribbean is provided
by Narcotics Affairs Section (NAS) officers, other Embassy
officers in the field, and U.S. law enforcement agencies.
INL's assistance for law enforcement and
other judicial-sector officials varies significantly among
the 30 countries with which we work in Latin America and
the Caribbean. The focus is on developing already-established
police forces. Factors such as geography, level of development,
host-nation capacity, political will, drug trafficking and
criminal threat levels help to determine the type and level
of assistance provided.
Historically, the majority of INL law enforcement
assistance has been in the area of counternarcotics. In
fact, in most countries, INL works very closely with DEA
and other agencies in determining training needs for the
counternarcotics police in general and in providing support
to specialized units. In recent years, we have begun to
also focus on other law enforcement and justice areas --
like counterterrorism, money laundering, trafficking in
persons, alien smuggling, and organized crime investigations
-- needed to confront the gamut of transnational crimes.
Potential participants in all U.S. training
programs are vetted at the local level and in Washington,
through the databases of the appropriate agencies and offices
in compliance with relevant laws and regulations. This vetting
is designed to detect human-rights violators and individuals
who have engaged in narco-trafficking.
In most cases, INL uses a "train the
trainer" approach to give the recipient country the
capacity to provide some of this training in the future,
using their own resources. This force-multiplier concept
has been very successful in countries like Bolivia and Colombia,
where we have invested significant amounts of resources
in training over the years.
Clearly, we face challenges training police
in some countries in which low education levels, cronyism
and nepotism, poor leadership, and corruption are pervasive.
Most INL training programs include an anti-corruption component
and instruction on respect for human and civil rights.
Evaluating police training programs in countries
with limited infrastructure, like Haiti, or in countries
with significant internal violence, like Colombia, is a
long-term process. It has often taken a decade to assess
the success of such training programs. Frequently, police
training programs are delivered in hazardous environments
to address urgent needs. Such programs are designed to be
as efficient as possible under the circumstances. As circumstances
evolve, so do the INL programs.
All U.S. trainers are subject-matter experts,
and the majority are certified trainers within their own
organizations. In addition to active-duty law enforcement
personnel, INL uses retired law enforcement personnel with
significant experience working in the region and in conducting
training. Due to the security environment of many countries,
INL often turns to Department of Defense (DoD) for specialized
training for elite counternarcotics units.
In Guatemala, for example, the U.S. Special
Forces conduct annual training for the Guatemalan narcotics
police in such skills as entry and exit training and small
unit tactics. In Colombia, U.S. Special Forces trains teams
of the Colombian National Police's elite "Jungla"
CN assault forces, and the CNP's Rural Mobil Carabinero
Squadrons that are featuring so prominently in President
Uribe's ambitious Democratic Security program -- and particularly
his successful effort to bring GOC forces into all of Colombia's
1098 municipalities for the first time ever. To date, DoD
trainers have trained all three "Jungla" Airmobile
Interdiction companies and some 43 Carabinero Rural Mobile
U.S. Law Enforcement Cooperation
with Latin America
ILEA: INL actively encourages hemispheric
nations to participate in sub-regional training as a way
to promote cross-border law enforcement cooperation. It
is also a way to achieve a multiplier effect for our investment.
Several of our programs -- such as in Bolivia and Guatemala
-- include personnel from other countries in their training
centers. However, our longstanding goal has been to create
an International Law Enforcement Academy in Latin America,
like those in Europe, Asia and Africa.
A U.S. inter-agency survey team has traveled
to a number of countries that have expressed interest in
hosting the new academy. The team has assessed potential
sites based on the criteria used for the selection of other
ILEA sites worldwide, and the interagency ILEA Policy Board
will make a determination based on this assessment.
In parallel with the site-selection process,
we have continued to make progress in developing a training
program for the new ILEA. INL and other departments that
participate in the ILEA program conducted an inter-governmental
curriculum development conference in March in Panama.
Organization of American States: INL is
also working through multilateral organizations such as
the Organization of American States and the United Nations.
In this hemisphere, we have collaborated with the OAS's
drug commission (CICAD) and its terrorism committee (CICTE),
as well as the annual Meeting of Ministers of Justice (REMJA),
to promote model legislation, minimum standards, and best
practices in all facets of counternarcotics. These standards
have helped countries throughout the region to strengthen
their domestic capacities to fight crime and to work with
neighbor states. Hemispheric evaluation systems for anti-drug
and anti-corruption efforts bring peer pressure to bear
on countries to fully support their hemispheric anti-drug
and anti-corruption alliances. It is working.
For example, the Multilateral Evaluation
Mechanism (MEM) for anti-drug performance has encouraged
governments to advance in compliance with international
conventions, to establish essential control regimes, to
institute drug-abuse prevention and treatment. All OAS member
states are now party to the 1988 U.N. Drug Convention, almost
all have national anti-drug strategies, and most now have
control regimes for money laundering.
Through the OAS, we have strengthened collaboration
among governments to attack and dismantle the major drug
cartels through a unified strategy. The Anti-Drug Strategy
in the Americas, reinforced by the Multilateral Evaluation
Mechanism (MEM), has achieved policy "buy in"
by the rest of the hemisphere to shared responsibility and
accountability. Working multilaterally, INL has encouraged
the adoption of higher legal standards and promoted standardized
and coordinated approaches to combating transnational threats
such as money laundering and chemical diversion. There has
also been a measurable expansion of drug-abuse prevention
and treatment throughout the region due to INL-funded OAS
and U.N. efforts.
Bilateral Assistance Programs
The Andean region is the source of virtually
all of the world's cocaine. Ninety percent of the cocaine
and about half the heroin entering the U.S. is either produced
in or passes through Colombia. Therefore, we provide a comprehensive
package of assistance, including: eradication of illegal
drug crops; alternative development; training and material
support for stronger law enforcement and criminal justice
institutions; interdiction support; education and training
from human rights to anti-money laundering; border security;
culture of lawfulness (school-based and police); and drug
prevention and treatment.
The U.S. anti-drug strategy in Colombia
is -- through successful eradication and interdiction programs
-- undermining the narcotics industry, while also methodically
and decisively extending democracy and strengthening security
throughout Colombia by building up the democratic institutions
that provide security and justice.
INL law-enforcement training in Colombia
is extensive, and includes training in counternarcotics,
anti-money laundering, forensics, evidence-handling, port
security, contraband detection, organized crime, bomb detection,
asset forfeiture, human rights, anti-corruption, light unit
tactics, pilot and mechanics training, and advanced investigations,
to name a few.
Training for prosecutors and judges is often
funded by INL and provided by USAID or the U.S. Department
of Justice. In 2004, a total of 10,727 prosecutors, judges
and criminal investigators received intensive training to
help move Colombia into its new accusatory system. This
more efficient and transparent system is expected to be
operating nationwide by 2008.
To enhance the rule of law, our projects
have assisted the government of Colombia in establishing
37 Justice Houses (Casas de Justicia in Spanish), which
provides access to justice for poor Colombians. Make no
mistake: this is not a small victory or goal -- it is at
the very heart, in our view, of sustainable progress and
U.S. support. So far, these Casas de Justicia have handled
almost three million cases, easing the burden on the over-taxed
judicial system. Remarkably, USG initiatives have also established
35 new oral-trial courtrooms and trained over 10,000 lawyers,
judges and public defenders in oral legal procedures --
similar to those in the U.S. -- which are designed to reduce
impunity, provide transparency, and accelerate the traditionally
snail-paced judicial process.
INL has helped to establish police units
in 158 new municipalities, many of which had not seen any
government presence in decades. For the first time in the
Colombian history, there is now a federal presence in all
1,098 of Colombia's municipalities. This is an enormous
step forward for the people of Colombia and their democratically
Colombia also invests significant amounts
of its own funding in training. The National Police maintains
its own professional education system administered by the
police's instructional division. The two principal professional
schools for members of the National Police are the General
Santander Police Cadet School and the Jiménez de
Quesada Noncommissioned Officers School, both located in
Bogotá. INL provides extensive technical assistance
to the police instructional division, particularly in the
priority area of counternarcotics. The National Police also
operates seven smaller schools throughout the country. These
schools offer a five-month basic training course for recruits,
as well as in-service training -- and courses on subjects
as diverse as Colombian history, human rights, counternarcotics,
and riot control. INL offers specialized training in all
of these schools, as needed.
Two of the primary recipients of INL-funded
police training are the Carabineros and the Junglas, both
of whom have played a key role in Colombia's counternarcotics
success of recent years. The Carabineros are 150-man, mobile
rural police squadrons that have been instrumental in establishing
public security and a government presence in Colombia, while
also ensuring security for our aerial spray program. The
Junglas are jungle commando units made up of about 166 commandos.
There are currently three Junglas airmobile interdiction
We must continue to build on the success
of the Andean Counternarcotics Initiative. In Colombia,
President Uribe has aggressively taken on the fight against
illegal drug production and the narco-traffickers. The U.S.-supported
spray program in Colombia has reduced coca cultivation by
more than 30 percent since its historic peak three years
ago. In 2004, Colombia's spray and manual eradication efforts
resulted in the eradication of 135,000 hectares of coca
and 3,000 hectares of heroin poppy. Increasing amounts of
cocaine and heroin were seized. The number of murders and
kidnappings sharply declined. Net production of cocaine
continued to fall from 460 metric tons to 430 metric tons.
Opium poppy production also continued to decline -- down
50 percent over the past three years.
Under President Uribe's leadership, and
with our support, Colombia has made considerable progress
in combating drug traffickers, terrorists and the narco-terrorist
organizations: the FARC, AUC and ELN.
As a result, the momentum is shifting toward
stability, the rule of law, and democracy. Continued U.S.
support is critical to ensure that this momentum continues.
Counternarcotics progress in Bolivia is
being jeopardized by increasing cultivation in the volatile
Yungas region and by the increasing transshipment of Peruvian
and Colombian cocaine. Moreover, we are very concerned about
serious challenges to Bolivia's stability from radical opposition
groups that threaten the country's hard-won gains in democracy,
economic development, and the fight against drug trafficking.
The U.S. Embassy's Narcotics Affairs Section
(NAS) works with the government of Bolivia in operating
the Law Enforcement Development Program (LEDP) for Bolivia's
National Police (BNP). This program was recently expanded
to include the training of counternarcotics police and prosecutors.
It is also the principal channel for the NAS's anti-corruption
and police/prosecutorial reform activities. The program's
long-term goal is to establish long-term institutional stability
within the BNP and the Attorney General's office through
a variety of means, with a special focus on training police
and prosecutorial personnel. It will also support USG-sponsored
training of BNP officials in modern investigative techniques
that may help lead to successful terrorism-related prosecutions.
The program focuses on administrative and
organizational development, improvement of criminal investigative
capabilities, and development of training resources and
capabilities of both police and prosecutorial personnel.
It has improved the quality of training programs provided
through existing National Police entities, including comprehensive
reform of the police education system.
The LEDP coordinates with United States
Military Advisory Group and Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)
in the Embassy on training Bolivian security forces and
with the United States Agency for International Development
(USAID) regarding training for prosecutors. The LEDP training
cycle starts with a basic course to create a common foundation
for all actors (approximately 200 new police per year),
then moves into more specialized treatment of topics tailored
to the needs of the specific police or prosecutorial activity.
The Garras del Valor School is an academy
for training counternarcotics police in such courses as:
jungle survival skills, basic criminal investigation procedures,
the Bolivian legal system, human rights, and advanced or
refresher courses ranging from intelligence [and] information
management to defensive driving and first-aid skills. The
Garras School also serves as a regional training center
for counternarcotics police from other Latin American countries.
The Bolivian Navy Riverine unit -- the Blue
Devil Task Force (BDTF) -- patrols the country's extensive
river system to interdict drugs and drug-processing precursor-chemical
trafficking. The BDTF also runs a riverine interdiction
training school in Trinidad, Bolivia, that is attended by
students from other countries (most recently Panama).
Mexico is INL's second-oldest program and
remains one of its most important. It was primarily an eradication
program until 1990, when a major air interdiction program
was launched. After the government of Mexico took over funding
of its federal police aviation program in 1994, INL began
to concentrate its resources on law enforcement training
and institutional development. INL and our partner agencies
focus on raising the standard of federal policing, along
with the overall justice system.
Recognizing the need for progress toward
longer-term reform goals, we shifted from traditional "cycles"
of providing basic training year in and year out to short-term,
operations-focused training. The Mexican Attorney General's
office (PGR) training facilities seek to ensure that the
newly acquired skills and expertise are "institutionalized"
and become a regular aspect of every new agent's or prosecutor's
formation. Themes of integrity and accountability, and respect
for civil and human rights, are woven throughout U.S.-provided
While the NAS' Law Enforcement Training
and Professionalization program is primarily in support
of the PGR and its sub-agencies, it has begun to provide
training for state and local law enforcement through the
regional academies operated by the Mexican National System
of Public Security (SNSP), helping to improve domestic training
In addition, INL has funded training for
Mexican law enforcement officials at many U.S. law enforcement
academies, such as the FBI Academy. INL provides training,
technical assistance, and equipment for border security,
including safety and rescue. The U.S. Department of Justice,
with INL funds, provides training and technical assistance
to specialized investigative units that target organized
crime, narco-trafficking, and money laundering. INL organized
or financed over 120 training courses to over 6,000 Mexican
law enforcement personnel in 2004.
Mexico's Federal Investigations Agency (AFI)
has proven to be a much more effective law enforcement institution
than its predecessors, and is trusted by its U.S. counterparts.
Working with Mexico's crime information center (CENAPI),
AFI uses high-tech tools and analytical systems to work
smarter against drug cartels, kidnapping rings, and other
criminal organizations. The newly established Mexican Office
of the Special Prosecutor for Organized Crime (SIEDO) is
beginning to make inroads against the drug cartels. In each
of these cases, INL has assisted with major improvements
in physical plant, equipment, training, and internal controls.
Political will has been the critical factor
in the success of INL's program in Mexico. Important reform
efforts were accelerated under Mexican President Fox. Seizing
the opportunity, INL's field office began working more closely
with strategic planners and others responsible for designing
a better-functioning justice ministry. Extensive reforms
of personnel systems, pay and benefit scales, and institution
of checks and balances within law enforcement and justice
institutions allowed the Fox Administration to avoid some
of the mistakes of previous governments. U.S. technical
assistance helped the PGR to raise minimum standards for
investigators and police, establish more objective selection
criteria, initiate background checks, create a civil service
system with merit-based promotions, and to modernize training
-- making it more relevant to field personnel.
In Mexico, INL supported an innovative school-based
crime prevention and rule-of-law program called the "Culture
of Lawfulness." This program, sponsored by the U.S.-based
National Strategy Information Center, has been very successful
in de-glamorizing gang membership and drug use and promoting
respect for law. The government of Mexico plans to extend
INL funds established the Regional Anti-Narcotics
Training Center that primarily trains Guatemalans, but has
also included students from 12 other Central and South American
countries. Training includes a "boot camp" for
the anti-narcotics police. This school is especially proficient
in training narcotics and explosives detection dogs and
their handlers. In 2004, INL took over the management of
a model community-policing project in Villanueva, Guatemala,
a small city facing many challenges, including a serious
youth gang problem.
The NAS has a resident DHS Customs Advisor
who provides both basic and advanced contraband detection
training to Guatemalan law enforcement officials. The advisor
also provides this training in the other Central American
countries. This training greatly improves the capacity of
law enforcement to detect narcotics, illegal arms, and illegal
INL has invested significant funding for
Guatemala over the last three years to provide anti-money-laundering
training. The U.S. Treasury Department has been one of the
primary providers of this training, which was instrumental
in convincing Guatemala to pass modern money-laundering
legislation and be removed from the Financial Action Task
Force (FATF) list of non-complying countries for money laundering.
INL and WHA are partnering INCLE and ESF
funding to implement a comprehensive criminal justice assistance
program. A law enforcement development advisor works with
the Ministry of Public Security's Frontier Police, and the
project focuses on field training for this group of officers
with authority for counternarcotics and border-control operations.
During the first year of operation, drug seizures in Honduras
skyrocketed, with the government seizing about six metric
tons of cocaine -- more than the previous five years combined.
This year, the advisor will emphasize training in investigating
high-level narcotics and money-laundering cases.
This is another example of INL-WHA partnership.
ESF funding is used to support a Law Enforcement Development
advisor who works with the Jamaican Police Commissioner
on restructuring the Jamaica Constabulary Force. The advisor
also coordinates with other donors on their police reform/modernization
efforts, including the United Kingdom's police modernization
project and USAID's community policing project. INL funds
bring in professional U.S. trainers and provide specialized
In Haiti, INL is deeply involved in a broad-based
international effort to build a criminal justice system
from the ground up. All three pillars of the criminal justice
system (police, judicial sector, and prisons) are in desperate
need of reconstruction. Our partners in this international
effort include the United Nations (MINUSTAH military and
civilian police), the OAS, and USAID.
INL-provided civilian police are a key element
of the U.N. CIVPOL program at work in Port-au-Prince, Cap
Haitien, and elsewhere to train and re-build the Haitian
National Police. Our Police Advisory Group, which is attached
to our embassy in Port-au-Prince, is designing and implementing
programs to recruit, train, and field new classes of Haitian
National Police (HNP). An OAS vetting team screens new HNP
recruits through written and oral exams. Our Police Advisory
Group will also focus on helping the HNP and relevant ministries
to create accountability measures.
INL and USAID last year developed an overall
strategy for justice-sector reform and are working together
to move forward in this difficult task. USAID is leading
a justice-reform program aimed at developing a functioning
judiciary that includes prosecutors and judges. It would
be difficult to overstate the challenges that this reform
effort faces. INL's programs complement USAID's program.
Because many international criminal threats
are transnational in nature, we have organized our responses
-- training and programs -- to respond transnationally as
well. This enables us to promote consistent messages around
the world, as well as to encourage governments to develop
common policy and legislative frameworks for combating these
shared threats. A few examples include: anti-corruption
and transparency, money laundering and financial crime,
and human smuggling.
Anti-Corruption and Transparency
Early in his Administration, President Bush
identified the fight against corruption as a key foreign
policy objective. In support of this objective, INL provided
political and financial support for U.N. negotiations to
establish the first global convention against corruption.
That convention was concluded in 2003 and has been signed
by 123 countries, including the United States and most of
the countries in this hemisphere. INL also provided assistance
and experts to help more than 60 countries implement anti-corruption
commitments through mechanisms within the OAS, Council of
Europe, Stability Pact and others. As part of a long-term
process to help build popular support against corruption
among the next generation, INL has supported the expansion
of the Culture of Lawfulness education program to promote
rule of law, combat corruption and crime.
International drug traffickers are closely
linked to transnational organized crime groups engaged in
a broad range of illegal activities that threaten U.S. interests,
including trafficking and smuggling of persons and contraband,
money laundering, intellectual property-rights (IPR) theft,
and trafficking in small arms.
An estimated $750 billion in profits from
these and other forms of organized crime are laundered worldwide
annually. Consider the corrupting and distorting impact
on national and international economies and financial sectors
of this level of money laundering.
Fighting financial crime, criminal or terrorist,
is a complicated and sophisticated undertaking. Even when
the newly created financial intelligence units that we have
helped to establish around the hemisphere uncover evidence
of financial crimes, some justice systems are currently
incapable of prosecuting them successfully.
Some countries have outdated laws, systems
that inhibit information-sharing between bank regulators
and prosecutors, and courts that are not prepared to handle
these kinds of cases.
Therefore, institution-building in this
critical area involves working, at a minimum, with legislators
and treasury officials to establish laws and regulations,
with regulators and financial intelligence units to be able
to detect suspicious transactions, with prosecutors and
judges to prepare and adjudicate such cases.
We work very closely with the Financial
Action Task Force (FATF) -- and its two sub-regional task
forces here in this hemisphere -- and with the OAS's CICAD
unit. The task forces have developed international "best
practices" and also conduct intensive evaluations of
national control systems.
CICAD's Money Laundering Experts Group has
taken the international standard established in the 1988
Convention as well as the FATF recommendations and developed
model legislation used by countries throughout the hemisphere
as a template for modernized legislation. INL, the Inter-American
Development Bank, and other assistance donors have also
provided funding to CICAD and the U.N. Crime and Drug Office
(UNODC) to help establish financial intelligence units and
conduct training for government officials, judges and legislators.
Human Smuggling and Trafficking
and Terrorist Travel
INL works with other agencies and international
partners to combat illegal movements of people and generally
improve border and travel security. In keeping with 9/11
Commission recommendations, the Departments of State, Justice
and Homeland Security, together with intelligence-community
agencies, have designed the U.S. inter-agency Human Smuggling
and Trafficking Center (HSTC) to improve cooperation across
intelligence, law enforcement, and diplomatic lines in combating
three inter-related criminal activities:
-- terrorist travel facilitation (through
false documents, communications, safe houses, clandestine
-- human smuggling (deriving huge profits
for its perpetrators); and
-- trafficking in persons (for exploitation).
These crimes are global, but the United
States often is most heavily affected by criminal organizations
operating in Western Hemisphere countries. INL works with
the State Department Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking
in Persons to provide assistance to governments and other
international partners to thwart this activity.
INL counternarcotics and law-enforcement
assistance efforts focus on reducing the cultivation, production,
and transshipment of dangerous drugs to the United States;
working with other countries and international organizations
to reduce the influence of drugs in other countries; developing
programs to help nations track and prevent money laundering
and terrorist financing; assisting other nations in reducing
demand for drugs; and promoting development of justice-sector
institutions and support for the rule of law.
As a result of the president's firm commitment
to battling the international drug trade and advancing rule
of law around the world -- buttressed by unwavering congressional
support -- we have made substantial progress. However, drug
trafficking, international organized crime, and corruption
present a continuing challenge to freedom, security, and
By thinking longer-term, concentrating on
strengthening criminal justice institutions, building rule
of law and promoting regional cooperation against shared
threats, we are seeing positive results and an improved
security, as well as a greater "return" on the
U.S. foreign-assistance "investment."
I appreciate your interest and attention,
and welcome any questions you wish to ask.