Inspection of the Violent Crime Task Forces
in the Southern District of New York
Report Number I-2000-03
INSPECTION OBJECTIVES, SCOPE, AND METHODOLOGY
The objectives of our inspection were to determine whether the Violent Crime Task Forces (VCTF) met their goals and objectives as identified in the task force proposals, whether the VCTFs expended funds for approved purposes, and whether program managers provided adequate oversight. We conducted the inspection at the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York (USAO), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) New York Office, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) New York Field Division, and the New York City Police Department (NYPD), all located in the New York City metropolitan area. We performed field work from June 8 through October 16, 1998, with some follow-up in May 1999.
We reviewed the USAO's quarterly financial and progress reports, EOUSA guidance, transfer documents approving the expenditure of VCTF funds, and Public Law 103-317 (the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary, and Related Agencies Appropriation Act, 1995). We analyzed the Financial Management Information System for all four task forces. We also interviewed the USAO Deputy Administrative Officer and EOUSA Resource Management and Planning Staff to assess administrative and financial controls over the VCTF funds. In addition, we interviewed the EOUSA review committee members, including representatives from the FBI, Criminal Division, Immigration and Naturalization Service, United States Marshals Service, and the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. We did not interview the DEA representatives because of scheduling conflicts or the representative from the Office of the Deputy Attorney General who did not vote on reprogramming requests. We reviewed 111 requests to reprogram VCTF funds from various USAOs.
USAO ASIAN GANG VCTF
We interviewed an Inspector in the NYPD Management Information System Division, and discussed the photo-imaging system (PIMS) with FBI and NYPD investigative personnel. We reviewed New York Times newspaper articles on Asian gang activities in the Chinatown area and obtained case data from the Legal Information Office Network System. We interviewed the Director of the New York-New Jersey High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, the USAO Deputy Administrative Officer, Justice Management Division Contracting Officers, the FBI New York Office Special Agents involved with Asian gang investigations, officials in the State of New York, Division of Criminal Justice Services, and various EOUSA personnel.
USAO LATIN KINGS VCTF
To assess the results of the Latin Kings VCTF funding, we interviewed the USAO Chief of Crime Control Strategies, Chief of the Violent Gangs Unit, the Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA) involved in Latin Kings prosecutions, and FBI officials from the New York Office. We also interviewed the Director of Research Administration and a research associate from the Center for Applied Studies of the Environment at Hunter College who worked on the case and cooperator mapping system (CCMS). We also reviewed the National Institute of Justice grant to Hunter College.
DEA HOUSING AUTHORITY VCTF
To assess the results of the Housing Authority VCTF funding, we interviewed former group supervisors of the task force, current group supervisors of the three enforcement groups, former and current Associate Special Agents in Charge (ASAC), a NYPD sergeant, and the DEA Liaison. We also interviewed the contract data analysts, Program Manager, and the Northeast Regional Manager; the Contracting Officer and the Contracting Officer's Technical Representative. We reviewed DEA case files, USAO case information, and contractor invoices and timesheets.
We requested information and documentation regarding Housing Authority VCTF accomplishments associated with the expenditure of VCTF funds, i.e., case, arrest, and seized asset information for the three DEA enforcement groups assigned to this task force. However, the DEA did not provide the documents we requested during our field work. Our additional efforts to obtain accurate and detailed information on the results of the Housing Authority VCTF also were hindered by the continuous turnover and conflicting recollections of DEA officials who participated in the Housing Authority VCTF and of others in the New York Field Division.
Over a three month period, we performed two inventories of computer equipment purchased by the USAO for the Housing Authority VCTF. In total, we interviewed eleven DEA officials and VCTF participants in an attempt to inventory all property items.
We interviewed FBI officials from the New York Office and the AUSA overseeing the acquisition of computer and investigative equipment for the six task force squads.
EOUSA DELEGATION OF AUTHORITY
We reviewed pertinent DOJ Orders and relevant statutes in determining the correctness of EOUSA's delegation of authority to the USAOs. In addition, we solicited the opinion of our Office of General Counsel in making this determination.