The Transnational Organized Crime Rewards Program was established by Congress in 2013 as a tool to assist the U.S. Government to identify and bring to justice members of significant transnational criminal organizations.
The program gives the Secretary of State statutory authority to offer rewards for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of members of transnational criminal organizations who operate outside the United States. It is a key element of the White House Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime, which recognizes that transnational criminal networks are not only expanding in size and scope, but also diversifying their illicit activities.
The program complements the Narcotics Rewards Program by authorizing rewards for information on members of transnational criminal organizations involved in activities beyond drug trafficking that threaten national security, such as human trafficking, money laundering, and trafficking in arms and other illicit goods.
The Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs manages the program in close coordination with U.S. federal law enforcement agencies.
Proposals to pay rewards are submitted to the Department of State by the Chief of Mission at a U.S. Embassy at the behest of a U.S. law enforcement agency. Reward proposals are carefully reviewed by an interagency committee, which makes a recommendation for a reward payment to the Secretary of State. Only the Secretary of State has the authority to determine if a reward should be paid. In cases where there is federal criminal jurisdiction, the Secretary must obtain the concurrence of the Attorney General.
The U.S. Government will ensure confidentiality to individuals who provide information on members of transnational criminal organizations, and, if appropriate, will relocate these individuals and their families.
Overseas, individuals wishing to provide information on major transnational criminal organizations may contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. In the United States, individuals should contact the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), or the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) directly. Government officials and employees are not eligible for rewards.