The Internal Effects of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Reprioritization
Audit Report 04-39
Office of the Inspector General
Part I - OIG Response to FBI Comments
In its response, the FBI questioned certain data values we obtained in our analyses, disagreed with information contained in three paragraphs, and expressed problems with three exhibits. The following are our responses to each of the FBI's comments.
The FBI commented on the second paragraph found on page i of the Executive Summary of the draft audit report, which stated:
Prior to 9/11, the FBI was a more traditional, reactive law enforcement agency; a crime occurred and the FBI investigated it. According to the FBI, since the reprioritization it is striving to incorporate more proactive, intelligence based tactics and operations into its procedures, particularly in terrorism related matters.
The FBI's response states:
The second paragraph is not fairly stated considering the number of proactive investigations being pursued against organized criminal enterprise, white collar crime, and public corruption. The paragraph, as written, would be fine if we were only engaged in violent crimes and civil rights.
In order to clarify the meaning of the paragraph in question, we have altered it slightly. Our changes are noted in bold text, as follows:
Prior to 9/11, the FBI utilized more of its field agent resources to investigate traditional criminal activity than to investigate matters related to terrorism. According to the FBI, since the reprioritization it is striving to incorporate more proactive, intelligence based tactics and operations into its procedures, particularly in terrorism related matters.
Incorrect Data Values
The FBI claimed that certain OIG-determined AOB values in Exhibit 3 11 on page 37 of the draft audit report are incorrect. The FBI response states:
Exhibit 3 11 reflects an AOB change for 196C cases with numbers reflected as 73 and 54. CID could not determine the significance of these numbers. AOB for 196C cases were as follows: 159 in 2000, 177 in 2001, 182 in 2002, and 250 in 2003. Overall, the purpose of the last column of numbers is suspect.
Using FBI source data, we determined the AOB for 196C cases to be 135 in FY 2000 and 208 in FY 2003. We contacted the FBI's TURK Program Manager, and she confirmed that the values we computed were correct. As to the purpose of the last column of the exhibit being "suspect," its purpose is to provide additional information on the percentage change in AOB from FY 2000 through FY 2003. We believe that such an analysis is valid and consistent with our audit objective.
The FBI also questioned the accuracy of FSL data presented in Exhibits 4 2 and 4 3 on pages 49 and 50, respectively. The FBI states, "Exhibit 4-2 should reflect 491 agents for the Drug Program in FY 2002," and "Exhibit 4 3 should reflect 1677 for the 2002 FSL (not considering the FSL for CEI)."
We reviewed our analyses of FSL data and determined the discrepancy the FBI notes in its response resulted from the FBI reviewing material from a different data set. For all of our analyses, we utilized the final adjusted FSLs for each fiscal year, provided to us by the FBI's Resource Management and Allocation Office. The FBI, on the other hand, appears to have utilized the initial FSLs established for each fiscal year. In order to clarify this issue, we spoke to an official in the Resource Management and Allocation Office, who advised that, essentially, both data sets could be considered correct. Because we consistently utilized the final adjusted FSLs throughout our report, we did not make the change that the FBI suggested. However, in order to clarify this issue, we added footnote 12 on page 9 of the report, stating that we utilized final adjusted FSLs in every analysis we have included in our report.
Missing, Unreadable, and Incomplete Materials
In its response, the FBI noted that four exhibits in the draft audit report were either missing data, were unreadable, or were incomplete. The FBI states that on:
We reviewed these issues and found that on page 12, data for the Organized Crime/Drug Program is listed as the second entry under the Field Agent FSL Subtotal header. Additionally, we were able to read the classifications and names in the exhibits on pages 40 and 46, as were other FBI personnel who performed a line item sensitivity and classification review on both charts. Finally, while the FBI states Exhibit 4 6 on page 55 is incomplete, it provides no further details to explain what the exhibit is missing. We believe the exhibit contains all necessary and pertinent data.
Violent Crime Program
The FBI noted that some of our statements on page 55 of the draft audit report regarding the FBI's violent crime program are inaccurate. The relevant paragraph on page 55 of our report states:
Direction to Field Offices - According to FBI officials, little written direction was given to the field with regard to the reprioritization and the specific impact it would have on violent crime investigations. Rather, the FBI incorporated aspects of this reprioritization into the program plans it issues annually to the field. We reviewed the program plans related to violent crime matters for FYs 2001 and 2003 and found that field offices were given a list of national priorities for violent crime matters as a guide for prioritizing investigations. Although we observed slight changes in the priority list between the two fiscal years, as shown in Exhibit 4-7, the FBI's national priorities for violent crime matters have essentially remained the same since FY 2001.
In its response, the FBI states:
This paragraph seems to implicitly criticize that our priorities within the program have not changed as a result of 9-11, and that we should have reprioritized based on their resource utilization analysis. This is incorrect. Priorities are based on the crime problem and not resource utilization. All of our intelligence and latest crime survey indicates that the crime problems identified as priorities have not changed and, thus, the priorities should not be changed.
The FBI further disagrees with information in the same paragraph on page 55. The FBI response states:
The paragraph also seems to imply criticism about the lack of written direction given to the field based on input from (unnamed) FBI officials. The program plan contains specific direction and course of action for the field in the SAC Guidance section for each goal and objective. In addition to the program plan and the field guidance ECs on the list previously provided, CID also issued guidance regarding priorities in EC dated 10/21/2003, 66F-HQ-A1246974-A, Serial 582. In addition to previous guidance VCS recently issued updated guidance on appropriate response to bank robberies in same file, Serial 963. There are other specific ECs regarding on specific initiatives such as the Child Prostitution Initiative, Retail Theft Initiative, Violent Cities Initiative, as well as guidance ECs related to dealing with FAMS and TSA.
In order to clarify the meaning of our statements, we have altered the paragraph in question. Our changes are noted in bold text, as follows:
Direction to Field Offices - According to FBI officials, written direction was provided to the field detailing changes within the violent crime program necessitated by the FBI's reprioritization. This direction took the form of electronic communications and announcements of investigative initiatives related to specific types of violent crime. Additionally, the FBI incorporated aspects of its reprioritization into the program plans it issues annually to the field. We reviewed the program plans related to violent crime matters for FYs 2001 and 2003 and found that field offices were given a list of national priorities for violent crime matters as a guide for prioritizing investigations. These priorities are based upon the violent crime problems identified by each field office. Although we observed slight changes in the priority list between the two fiscal years, as shown in Exhibit 4-7, the FBI's national priorities for violent crime matters have essentially remained the same since FY 2001. This implies that the nation's violent crime problems have not changed.
The FBI also disagrees with aspects of the following portion of a paragraph found on page 56 of the draft audit report:
…As was the case with other criminal investigative programs, FBI officials stated that the FBI's violent crime efforts would focus primarily on the "big players." However, SACs were advised to use their discretion in allocating limited violent crime resources to matters that were most problematic within their jurisdictions.
The FBI's response states:
This is also misleading. First of all, CID did not issue guidance of this kind to SACs, as stated. SACs are supposed to establish priorities based on the national priorities and the crime problem identified in their divisions, and allocate resources accordingly. This guidance is also contained in the program plan.
Based on the material we collected and information we obtained during the audit, we continue to stand behind our statement that SACs were to use their discretion in allocating violent crime resources to the most problematic areas in their jurisdictions. Specifically, our support includes: 1) the FBI's 2003 Program Plans, 2) an EC issued by the Criminal Investigative Program Management and Coordination Unit, and 3) a statement made by the Assistant Director of the Criminal Investigative Division during an interview with OIG personnel. In order to further clarify our statements, we have altered the relevant portion of the paragraph in question. Our changes are noted in bold text, as follows:
…As was the case with other criminal investigative programs, the FBI's violent crime program was directed to leverage its limited resources. Specifically, according to an FBI memorandum, field offices were to concentrate their violent crime efforts primarily on criminal enterprises. Additionally, SACs were advised to keep the FBI's national priorities in mind while directing their limited violent crime resources to matters that were most problematic within their jurisdictions.
Part II - Status of Recommendations and FBI Actions Necessary to Close the Audit
Redacted and Unclassified