DSS special agents serving as assistant regional security officer-investigators (ARSO-Is) are at the frontline of conducting transnational investigations and collaborative training with DSS international and foreign partners. These law enforcement officers work to protect U.S. national and border security before threats reach U.S. shores.
As it does each year, the Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) punched above its weight in 2019 especially in the areas of overseas investigations and training.
Here is a snapshot of one of their cases in 2019:
Due to its strategic location in Europe, Romania is a hotbed for transnational crimes, many of which affect U.S. national security. The ARSO-I team in Bucharest is working with DSS colleagues and Romanian and U.S. law enforcement partners to combat visa fraud, human trafficking, human smuggling and related crimes. In 2019, ARSO-I Bucharest collaborated with the Romanians and other partners to identify and arrest members of a country-based organized crime group that uses fraudulent U.S. visas to perpetuate human smuggling, trafficking, violent crimes and international, industrial-scale ATM skimming. ARSO-I Bucharest also worked with Moldovan officials to thwart similar criminal networks seeking to exploit Romanian identification and travel documents. Upon learning of the scheme, the Bucharest police arrested and prosecuted members of the criminal network. These types of cases demonstrate the cost-effective capabilities of the ARSO-I program that makes DSS a force multiplier in the fight against transnational crime.