International Police Cooperation

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  • International Police Cooperation

    Do US/UK police ever team up with each other - ie: one travels to the other's country and work an investigation? I would assume not because they have no legal powers in a foreign country. I'd also assume any international stuff would be handled at a CIA/FBI--Mi5/Mi6 level but, well, I don't know. Maybe they do the whole foreign exchange thing - and get special dispensation to act like a resident copper?

    If the answer is "no" and I need to have one copper emigrate to a new country and join the police there, would he have to start at the bottom as a rookie, regardless of how many years experience he has, or could be go in higher or at least be fast tracked?

    Re: the CIA/FBI, I understand the feds deal with internal threats whilst the CIA deals with external yet I've heard of FBI busts in foreign countries, how come?

    There are so many US agencies - ICE, DEA, ATF, NSA etc. Where do they rank amongst each other? Where does one's jurisdiction ends and another begins?

    Cheers me dears.

  • #2
    Re: International Police Cooperation

    In my experience, local and state agencies do not. As soon as you get to the level that you're dealing with international matters, it's a fed matter.

    I believe the external/internal thing with FBI/CIA is more principle than than practice. The FBI does quite a bit outside the US, particularly dealing with terrorism (they investigated Osama extensively well before 9/11), and, well, we all know how much self-control the US exercises when it comes to spying within the US.

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    • #3
      Re: International Police Cooperation

      Originally posted by SundownInRetreat View Post
      There are so many US agencies - ICE, DEA, ATF, NSA etc. Where do they rank amongst each other? Where does one's jurisdiction ends and another begins?
      A favorite scene of mine, from "Sleepless in Seattle" -
      Code:
       EXT. THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING - DAY
      
       And pull back to reveal that it's a shot from "An Affair 
       To Remember."
      
       And pull back to reveal:
      
       INT. JESSICA'S HOUSE - DAY
      
       JONAH is watching with his little girlfriend JESSICA, 
       who's crying.
      
                    JESSICA
                  (weeping)
               This is the best movie I've 
               ever seen in my life.
      
                    JONAH
               I don't get it.
      
                    JESSICA
               You have to go to her, Jonah.  
               You have to find her.
      
       Jonah nods.  But he isn't sure how he's going to do it.
      
                    JONAH
               Do you know how much it costs 
               to go to New York?
      
                    JESSICA
               Nobody knows.  It changes 
               practically every day.  
      In some instances, pretty much the same with those agencies.

      In any event, it seems to be accepted by audiences that, for example, MI-5/6 might work directly in the field with NYPD. After all, in "Homeland", they get sooo many things wrong as to what U.S. agency does what/where/to whom, but it passes the Audience Test.

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      • #4
        Re: International Police Cooperation

        Cooperation is pretty much seen as observer only. I worked for Customs and Border Protection and we have officers placed all around the world to inspect cargo before it ever gets to America. But if you were to really break it down, those officers are really only advisers. They do not have law enforcement authority and they are not armed. Think of it as they looked at something and then advised the local authorities to seize it before it gets to America. (That is a very simplistic explanation, but you get the point).

        As for the FBI overseas. Yes, they do operate overseas, but still at the invite of local governments. They aren't really making arrests or seizures overseas. A good example would be Thailand. They are trying to vigorously crack down on the sex tourism trade and are working closely with us in that effort. There was an American fugitive in Thailand who was wanted for several child molestation charges. Thai officials found him and the FBI flew over to pick him up, but they did not technically arrest him and had to wait to get to America to do so. Even when home the FBI did not arrest him, I did. When he entered the US he was in CBP authority until we released him into the country. So I arrested him on the outstanding warrant and then turned him over to the FBI. The process took about 5 minutes and he was always in their control. I just took his passport, booked the arrest and waived him out. We did it that way so as to not cross jurisdiction boundaries. Turf wars are everywhere, so you don't want to give anyone an inch.

        Yes, we did have officers from foreign countries move to America, get citizenship here and then join our agency. Yes, they started as rookies and had to work their way up.

        Hope that helps.

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        • #5
          Re: International Police Cooperation

          Originally posted by dave22 View Post
          A good example would be Thailand. They are trying to vigorously crack down on the sex tourism trade and are working closely with us in that effort. There was an American fugitive in Thailand who was wanted for several child molestation charges. Thai officials found him and the FBI flew over to pick him up, but they did not technically arrest him and had to wait to get to America to do so. Even when home the FBI did not arrest him, I did..
          Leave it to the FIBs to not be able to figure out how to open a door mid-flight.
          wry

          The rule is the first fifteen pages should enthrall me, but truth is, I'm only giving you about 3-5 pages. ~ Hollywood Script Reader

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          • #6
            Re: International Police Cooperation

            You could always have your UK law enforcement agent take a "vacation" to the US in pursuit of his nemesis, and team up with a maverick FBI agent for an unofficial partnership.

            As far as jurisdiction over this or that - willing suspension of disbelief should cover almost any situation. But all our agencies have websites that are chock full of info - just slap .gov on the appropriate initials and research away.

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            • #7
              Re: International Police Cooperation

              Dave, BMC, Sbbn, some very useful info, guys, thanks. I agree about suspension of disbelief but it's always good to know the facts so you know just how far you're bending reality.
              Last edited by SundownInRetreat; 02-17-2014, 12:14 PM.

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              • #8
                Re: International Police Cooperation

                Originally posted by SundownInRetreat View Post
                I agree about suspension of disbelief but it's always good to know the facts so you know just how far you're bending reality.
                It depends on the type of story you are trying to tell. If it is a gritty drama or thriller, you don't really have that much latitude. Fringe is a great show that strives to get the details right, but they still missed on some important details that would really piss off my friend from the FBI (yes, I do like one person over there). She actually emailed me yesterday just railing on the show White Collar. I have a friend who was a Ranger. He participated in Operation Red Wings (the mission to save the SEALS in Lone Survivor) He hates that film, not because it's a bad story, but because they marketed as being as true and realistic as possible when they actually changed some really key plot points. Like the part their target having killed 20 Marines the week before (20 Marines hadn't died in the whole war at that point). If you're striving for real, make sure it's real.

                On the other hand, I absolutely love 21 Jump Street even though they got nearly every single thing wrong about police work. It doesn't bother me at all because it's a comedy and they weren't striving for realism. I just sit back and let it make me laugh.

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                • #9
                  Re: International Police Cooperation

                  Originally posted by wrytnow View Post
                  Leave it to the FIBs to not be able to figure out how to open a door mid-flight.
                  No comment, but please take my lack of willingness to comment as my comment.

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                  • #10
                    Re: International Police Cooperation

                    Jurisdiction has more to do with the subject covered than geography or law - the different agencies have different areas of focus. It's fairly easy to research what these are even just from their own websites.

                    Most agencies have officers in other countries but they don't need particular powers to operate there. They are usually described as 'liaison' staff -they liaise with the equivalent department in that country and share information and inquiries. Specific criminal inquiries are usually handled through Interpol and each member country has Interpol-designated staff and offices.

                    In a few instances some departments do need to have legal authority to act in other countries. For example, when the Secret Service arrive in other countries they are often sworn in as temporary officers or constables because otherwise they would not legally be allowed to carry firearms in that country. In criminal matters, warrants and court-issued extradition papers enable local authorities to act on behalf of other agencies depending on the agreement between the two countries - these agreements are often known as treaties or memorandums of understanding (MOU). Customs departments routinely share intelligence amongst the same agency in different countries. National intelligence agencies also share, but in a more controlled and strategic manner amongst allies. They often have job titles to disguise their actual role, for example 'Economic Affairs Adviser'. Etc. etc. etc. ...

                    Between some countries it is possible for police to emigrate and be fast-tracked via an induction course, e.g. between Australia and UK, but the countries need to have a lot in common (in terms of culture, law, and policing practices) for this to be possible.
                    "Friends make the worst enemies." Frank Underwood

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                    • #11
                      Re: International Police Cooperation

                      Originally posted by DavidK View Post
                      Jurisdiction has more to do with the subject covered than geography or law - the different agencies have different areas of focus. It's fairly easy to research what these are even just from their own websites..
                      As a former police officer from a family of cops, lawyers and politicians, I disagree. Jurisdiction is about the boundaries of authority. A Park Policeman in a certain city has the full authority of any police officer, but no authority whatsoever outside the boundaries of the park. The sheriffs handle prisoners anywhere in the city, but have no powers of arrest. The police have blanket authority to act in all areas in all capacities. Social services has the authority to order a child removed from a home, but they have no authority to physically remove the child. These are all jurisdictional issues. They might be defined as they are in some cases because of the scope or focus of the agency, but they are based in geography and law.

                      Whether or not one is authorized to use a firearm isn't a jurisdictional issue, it is a strict matter of law. If one can only obtain that authorization by being "deputized," the extension of the individual's jurisdiction would be a by-product.

                      In the case of Secret Service, FBI, Homeland Security, NSA and other countries. Pretty much everyone is just doing whatever the hell they want and keeping the public in the dark, anyway, so write whatever you wish.
                      wry

                      The rule is the first fifteen pages should enthrall me, but truth is, I'm only giving you about 3-5 pages. ~ Hollywood Script Reader

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: International Police Cooperation

                        There have been several international paedophile rings broken in the past few years that involved police networks from Canada, US, Australia and various Asian countries. Check them out - how they worked together.

                        Re espionage - I can tell you categorically that the NSA was/is active in Australia. My husband was US Military Intell for most of his career - a crypto - and we were stationed here (Australia) at our "Pentagon" in Canberra. His bosses were all NSA - American spies working in cooperation with Australian Intell. (He took the position so I could come home.)

                        Lots of really smart people - code crackers, mathematicians, IT geniuses... Information sharing between some countries is pretty active - some more than others.

                        The Edward Snowden stuff is exposing a lot of this now, but it was pretty well known. What they were doing, specifically, however, was not.
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                        • #13
                          Re: International Police Cooperation

                          Originally posted by wrytnow View Post
                          As a former police officer from a family of cops, lawyers and politicians, I disagree. Jurisdiction is about the boundaries of authority. A Park Policeman in a certain city has the full authority of any police officer, but no authority whatsoever outside the boundaries of the park.

                          Whether or not one is authorized to use a firearm isn't a jurisdictional issue, it is a strict matter of law. If one can only obtain that authorization by being "deputized," the extension of the individual's jurisdiction would be a by-product.

                          In the case of Secret Service, FBI, Homeland Security, NSA and other countries. Pretty much everyone is just doing whatever the hell they want and keeping the public in the dark, anyway, so write whatever you wish.
                          We might be talking about slightly different things / at cross purposes - I don't have time to write an elaborate reply but I don't disagree with you. When I speak of geographical vs non-geographical distinctions I'm talking about different agencies, not about policing within and between 'zones', in other words different areas of the law are enforced by different departments/agencies. Of course there are areas of overlap and inter-agency co-operation. Yes the use of a firearms is a matter or law but I know for fact that when the secret service arrive in some countries the agents are 'deputized' in order that they may legally carry firearms - that's the only point I was making. And yes, some agencies do whatever they want under whatever guise they choose, but there is also a level at which they operate completely legitimately according to agreement between the respective governments.
                          "Friends make the worst enemies." Frank Underwood

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                          • #14
                            Re: International Police Cooperation

                            Batman has no jurisdiction.

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                            • #15
                              Re: International Police Cooperation

                              At least a few years ago, the NYPD had "offices in eleven different countries," with folk from their intelligence division "working with" their local counterparts.

                              NY Mag article: http://nymag.com/nymetro/news/features/n_8286/

                              Washington Post: http://voices.washingtonpost.com/spy...ay_outsid.html

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