Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime: Strengthen Interdiction, Investigations, and Prosecutions

This Strategy sets priorities and objectives to help law enforcement and other applicable agencies at the Federal, State, local, territorial and tribal levels work together in a collaborative manner to target TOC networks—their leaders as well as their enabling means and infrastructure—in the United States and abroad. It is equally important that we build strong working relationships with our international partners to harmonize our efforts, and to ensure that they have the capabilities and regulatory and legislative frameworks to prevent, reduce, and eliminate TOC threats.

Building upon the improved information sharing described earlier, the United States will leverage consolidated TOC databases to provide more accurate intelligence on known TOC members and their associates so they can more easily be denied entry to the United States or access to lawful immigration status, employment, or secure facilities.

This Strategy pursues TOC through criminal investigations and interdiction focused on both the net- works and their leadership. Criminal investigations will use an integrated approach that incorporates financial, weapons, and TOC-related corruption investigations into a comprehensive attack on the entire criminal organization. Interdiction efforts will focus on depriving TOC networks of their products, proceeds, infrastructure, and enabling means. The use of multi-agency task forces such as the ICE-led Border Enforcement Security Task Forces will remain essential to our efforts to investigate and interdict TOC threats at our borders.

To address recent TOC trends, the Administration will work with Congress on a range of legislative solu- tions to allow or enhance the prosecution of TOC enterprises and significant TOC activity that affects the United States. We will also enhance our anti-money laundering and forfeiture authorities to target TOC networks that pose threats to national and international security.


  1. Work with Congress to enhance U.S. authorities to identify, investigate, interdict, and prosecute top transnational criminal networks.
  2. Utilize rewards programs to assist in gathering information leading to the arrest or conviction of top transnational criminals.
  3. Issue a new Presidential Proclamation under the Immigration and Nationality Act to refuse visas/ deny entry to TOC-affiliated aliens, corrupt foreign officials, and other persons designated for finan- cial sanctions pursuant to the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.
  4. Develop a strategy that denies TOC networks and individuals in the United States access to their infrastructure and their enabling means.
  5. Deny visas to TOC members and associates and capture top TOC figures who take refuge in the United States or partner countries.
  6. Fully integrate financial, weapons, and TOC-related corruption investigations into comprehensive organizational attack activities and operations.
  7. Strengthen cooperation with international police organizations, such as Interpol, Europol, Ameripol, and the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), to facilitate cross-border police cooperation.
  8. Strengthen efforts to interdict illicit trafficking in the air and maritime domains.
  9. Develop and implement a whole-of-government plan to counter kidnapping for ransom in order to disrupt the funding for terrorists, pirates, and other bad actors.
  10. Deny TOC access to secure facilities and locations.

The U.S. Secret Service’s Cyber Intelligence Efforts

The U.S. Secret Service leverages technology and information obtained through private partnerships to monitor developing technologies and trends in the financial payments industry. The information obtained is used to enhance the U.S. Secret Service’s capabilities to prevent and mitigate attacks against the financial and telecommunications infrastructures. This approach to intelligence collection and sharing has resulted in the successful apprehension of individuals charged with committing some of the world’s most advanced cybercrimes during such investigations as those of the Heartland and TJX Intrusions, Maksym Yastremskey, Albert Gonzalez, and others. In FY 2010, the U.S. Secret Service arrested 1,217 suspects for cybercrime related violations, with a fraud loss of $507 million.

Defending U.S. Borders against TOC

In 2006, amidst rising crime on the Southwest border, ICE and CBP worked with other Federal, State, local, and foreign partners to establish the Border Enforcement Security Task Force (BEST), designed to attack TOC networks that exploit our borders and threaten the American public. Since then, this initiative has grown to 21 BESTs arrayed along the Southwest and Northern borders as well as at major seaports. These BESTs have seized more than 36,000 pounds of cocaine, 550 pounds of heroin, 485,000 pounds of mari- juana, 4,300 weapons, and $68 million, and led to the arrests of 5,910 individuals.