Working Group Meets in Sochi
The Counternarcotics Working Group (CNWG) held its eighth meeting May 29 – 31 in Sochi, Russia. During the event, U.S. co-chair Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) Director Gil Kerlikowske and Russian co-chair Federal Drug Enforcement Service (FSKN) Director Victor Ivanov shared views on a wide range of working group collaborative exchanges.
CNWG sub-working group reports highlighting the continued productive cooperation between the Federal Drug Control Service of the Russian Federation and the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and between the Ministry of Health of Russia and the United States Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) were presented during the plenary meeting.
Additionally, discussions were held regarding countermeasures against money laundering within the illicit narcotics trade. Finally, the co-chairs heard reports on Russian and U.S. counter narcotic activitives and programs in Central and South American countries.
The co-chairs of the Working Group agreed to continue the cooperation between the FSKN and ONDCP in supporting the two governments’ shared goals to eliminate global centers of drug production and drug trafficking. They also agreed to hold the next meeting of the Working Group in the United States in the second half of 2013.
Two-Week Intelligence Analysis Course
In August 2012, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Moscow Country Office accompanied two Russian Federal Drug Control Service intelligence analysts to San Antonio, Texas, to participate in a two week intelligence analysis course. The program was hosted by the DEA’s Office of Training and the DEA’s San Antonio District Office. Topics covered included the use of charting software, telephone analysis software, open source research, and strategic and tactical report writing.
Tour of Counternarcotics Facilities
In September 2012, the DEA Moscow Country Office traveled with senior representatives from the Russian Federal Drug Control Service, Russian Federal Customs Service, and the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs, to Miami for a tour of two counternarcotics facilities. In Florida, the participants visited the DEA Miami Field Division, and received presentations on the structure and operation of DEA operations in southern Florida. The group also traveled to Key West, where participants were provided a tour and presentation on the operations of the Joint Interagency Task Force – South (JIATF-S). JIATF-S is a joint military and civilian operation, which brings together resources to target and interdict significant drug flows from South America to the United States.
“Drug Czars” Hold Plenary Session
White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) Director Gil Kerlikowske and Russian Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN) Director Viktor Ivanov co-chaired the sixth plenary session of the Counternarcotics Working Group and held various site visits in St. Petersburg, May 23-25. The delegations were briefed by the respective interagency teams on progress made over the last six months in the field of counternarcotics cooperation. The co-chairs confirmed continued cooperation between the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Russian FSKN and continued support for the Government of Afghanistan’s effort to eliminate narcotics networks. They worked out a common position on exchanging data on combating global drug traffic flows, and agreed to continue to exchange information on effective drug treatments and rehabilitation programs. They decided to hold the next plenary in the United States in the second half of 2012 to mark the three-year anniversary of the creation of the Working Group. The delegations also visited the St. Petersburg City Narcological Hospital, where the members spoke with recovering drug-addicted patients participating in a treatment and rehabilitation program.
At the FSKN North-West Institute of Advanced Training, the U.S. and Russian delegations attended a graduation ceremony for counternarcotics officers from Central Asia and Afghanistan and also observed a live training demonstration conducted by the FSKN Special Operations Forces.
Counternarcotics Leaders Meet in Austria
Co-chairs of the Counternarcotics Working Group, Director R. Gil Kerlikowske, White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), and Director Victor Ivanov, Russian Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN), met on the margins of the annual United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) meeting in Vienna, March 11-13. In addition to bilateral discussions and the CND activities, their meetings included an ONDCP-hosted breakfast with representatives from 10 countries. That event focused on enhancing coordination on current drug policies and encouraging all countries to sharpen public messaging on the importance of science-based drug policies and the health risks of drug legalization. Participants agreed to meet again at the World Federation Against Drugs meeting in Stockholm, Sweden, which will provide an opportunity to advance discussions towards influencing drug policy on the global level by working with anti-drug NGOs.
Top Russian and U.S. Officials Meet Once Again on Counternarcotics Cooperation
White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) Director R. Gil Kerlikowske hosted a Russian delegation in Chicago, Illinois, for the fifth meeting of the BPC Counternarcotics Working Group. Viktor Ivanov, Director of the Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN), led the Russian delegation, which included several Russian senior staff members. On November 16, the co-chairs and attendees received updates covering the Working Group’s activities in the areas of illicit finance, law enforcement cooperation, and demand reduction as well as an update on the Central Asia Counternarcotics Initiative (CACI). Afterward, participants attended a presentation on the Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) program at John Stroger Hospital in the Chicago Medical District. The following day included presentations focused on a family-based drug treatment program at the Haymarket Center and a law enforcement meeting at the DEA Chicago Field Division. Read more»
FSKN Chemists Visit DEA Laboratory
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) hosted two chemists from the Russian Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN) in the Washington, D.C. area, November 14-18. The Russian visitors met their DEA counterparts and toured the Special Testing Laboratory in Dulles, Virginia. The group attended a course on the laboratory analysis of controlled substances and emerging trends in testing methods.
FSKN Deputy Director Meets ONDCP Director Kerlikowske
Gil Kerlikowske, Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), met with Nikolay Aulov, Deputy Director of the Russian Federation’s Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN), in Washington, D.C., on September 15. They discussed topics on the agenda for the planned November 2011 session of the BPC Counternarcotics Working Group in Chicago.
Border Counternarcotics Seminar Takes Place in Chelyabinsk
Working with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement (DHS/ICE), and Russian Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN), the Embassy Moscow Law Enforcement Section led a border counternarcotics seminar, August 29-31, in Chelyabinsk. The State Department Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs funded the seminar, during which representatives from DEA, DHS/ICE, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection made presentations following Yekaterinburg Consul General Michael Reinert’s opening remarks. The event concluded with a trip to the Russian-Kazakh border at Troitsk. The U.S. visitors met their FSKN counterparts from the regions bordering Kazakhstan as well as from FSKN headquarters in Moscow.
Northern Route Working Group Convenes in Afghanistan
The DEA and FSKN participated in the 5th meeting of the Northern Route Working Group in Kabul, Afghanistan, September 7. Attendees included representatives of the Afghanistan Minister of Interior, the Drug Control Agency under the President of Tajikistan (DCA), the FSKN, and the DEA. At the meeting they discussed ongoing drug investigations targeting the distribution of Afghan heroin along the Northern Route and the possibility of future joint-counternarcotics operations.
FSKN and DEA Focus on Money Laundering
The FSKN participated in a DEA-led international money laundering symposium in The Hague, Netherlands. The September 12-16 events included law enforcement officers from throughout Europe. The goal of the symposium was to discuss tactics and trends in money laundering investigations.
Joint Investigation Results in Drug Trafficking Arrest
The DEA, Russian FSKN, and Brazilian National Police successfully completed a joint investigation following the August 1 arrest of a drug trafficking organization’s leader in Brazil on Brazilian charges. His organization had been responsible for shipping cocaine from South America to Russia by sealing the illicit narcotics in luggage.
Counternarcotics Seminar Held with Russian Officials
The Drug Enforcement Agency conducted a four-day seminar April 18-22 on illicit narcotics financing for representatives from the Russian Federal Drug Control Service, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Federal Security Service, and Rosfinmonitoring. The dialogue centered on investigative techniques used by DEA to conduct successful financial investigations of drug trafficking organizations using sophisticated money laundering techniques. Additionally, DEA representatives discussed U.S. laws and statutes that allow for successful seizure of monies and hard assets obtained from the proceeds of drug trafficking.
Counternarcotics Working Group Meeting
Working Group Co-Chairs, Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) Director Gil Kerlikowske and Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN) Director Viktor Ivanov chaired a working group meeting in Moscow on March 24. Read More»
U.S. and Russian Law Enforcement Agencies Step Up Cooperation to Fight Drug Trafficking
In October, Russian and American authorities supported an Afghan-government led mission to seize a ton of heroin in Afghanistan. Bilateral cooperation also led to the dismantling of drug rings in Vladivostok and Florida. In November, the DEA and the Russian Customs Service (FTS) again collaborated to intercept codeine tablets, cocaine, syringes, vials and other supplies smuggled from Vladivostok for distribution throughout the Florida-Louisiana region. Read Press Release»
U.S. and Russia Counter Narcotics Directors Discuss Supply Reduction and Drug Treatment in Washington
Russian Drug Control Service Director Ivanov visited Washington and discussed supply reduction including Afghanistan drug trafficking cooperation, targeting illicit financial flows, and joint prosecutions. They also visited several drug treatment sites in the Washington – Baltimore area and issued a joint statement on Working group progress and future cooperation. Prior to his visit to Washington, Director Ivanov visited Los Angeles and met with Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Sheriff Leroy Baca. Read More» Joint Statement»
Joint U.S. - Russian Law Enforcement Operation Dismantles International Drug Smuggling Channel
On July 22, officials from the Russian Drug Control Agency (FSKN) in cooperation with their American counterparts from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency conducted a special operation in St. Petersburg that resulted in the dismantling of a cocaine smuggling channel from the United States into Russia. Press Release»