Kaiser, FBI Assistant Director for the
Criminal Investigative Division, discusses
a new anti-gang partnership in El Salvador
in early October. Also attending the announcement
was, from left to right, Rodrigo Avila
Avilez, Director General of the Policia
Nacional Civil; U.S. Ambassador to El
Salvador Charles Louis Glazer; and Elizardo
Gonzalez Lovo, Presidente de la Commission
de Seguridad Publica y Combata al la Narcoactividad.
GLOBAL ON GANGS
New Partnership Targets MS-13
it a case of having friends in the right places:
last week, we joined with our partners in
El Salvador in announcing our latest initiative
targeting MS-13—the extremely violent, fast-spreading
street gang that has tentacles in more than
40 U.S. states and 10 different nations across
called the Transnational Anti-Gang, or
TAG, initiative (the Centro Antipandillas
Transnacional in Spanish), and its centerpiece
is eyeball-to-eyeball communication and collaborationnamely,
two FBI agents permanently stationed in San
Salvador, working alongside 20 investigators
and 10 analysts from the Policia Nacional
Civil, or PNC, the national law enforcement
agency of El Salvador, to share intelligence
information on gang activities across Central
America and the U.S.
partnership makes operational sense: At
least 40 of our field offices today have ongoing
investigations into MS-13 and at least 15
field offices have investigations targeting
the 18th Street Gang, many with direct links
to El Salvador. Along with some 10,000 members
in the U.S., MS-13 has an estimated 60,000
combined members in El Salvador, Honduras,
initiative is an outgrowth of another partnershipthe
MS-13 National Gang Task Force (NGTF),
launched by the FBI three years ago to coordinate
intelligence and emphasize national-level
takedowns of MS-13 and the 18th Street Gang.
According to Ken Kaiser, head of our Criminal
Investigative Division in Washington, an "excellent
working relationship" was built between
the FBI and the PNC through this task force,
making this new anti-gang program possible.
how the Transnational Anti-Gang initiative
officers will identify and track gang members
in El Salvador, gleaning as much information
as possible about each member: their tattoos,
their street names, their associates, their
families, and their typical hideouts and
hangouts in the U.S. and Central America.
information will be channeled through the
two FBI agents assigned to the TAG, then
forwarded to the task force at FBI Headquarters.
The task force will ensure the information
is shared with appropriate field divisions.
the same time, we will share information
and intelligence with the PNC and law enforcement
partners throughout Central America when
our domestic gang cases have a connection
to their investigations.
nations will also conduct joint investigations,
and we will provide operational assistance
to the Central American region as needed.
team is already off to a good start. Last
month, its first joint operation led to the
arrest of ten MS-13 gang members in El Salvador
affiliated with four different groups or cliques,
including two of the most violent, "Los
Teclanos" and "Los Pinos Locos Salvatruchos."
The investigation was part of a larger case
involving 41 key MS-13 members indicted for
33 different murders. During the arrests,
a three-year-old boy missing since the murder
of his mother in December 2005 was safely
gang members in El Salvador and in neighboring
countries will be aided by the Central
American Fingerprint Exploitation initiative,
or CAFÉ, created in May 2006. Under
the initiative, criminal fingerprint and other
biometric records from Mexico, El Salvador,
Guatemala, Belize, and Honduras are entered
into the FBI's fingerprint databases, which
can be searched by U.S. law enforcement and
by the participating nations.
more information on how we protect your streets
and neighborhoods from gang violence and crime,
see our Violent