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FBI Has Doubled Number of Agents Assigned to Counterterrorism since 2001; Numbers Down for Criminal Matters

fbi logo largeBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — In what really comes as no surprise, the FBI has doubled the number of agents assigned to counterterrorism since 2001.

Jeff Stein of Spy Talk, a blog for the Washington Post, reports that Justice Department Inspector General Glenn A. Fine reported in fiscal 2009 “the FBI used 26 percent of its field agents to address counterterrorism matters, while using 51 percent to address criminal matters.”

“This is a significant change from FY 2001 when the FBI used 13 percent of its field agents on counterterrorism matters and 72 percent on criminal matters,” Fine said, according to Stein.

The report goes on to say that “we found that the FBI generally issued field agents in line with its allocation for its highest national priorities in FY 2009, including counterterrorism, counterintelligence, cyber crime, and civil rights. However, the FBI continued to use fewer field agents than allocated to address its lowest national priorities, including criminal enterprises, white collar crime and violent crime.”

And the report, according to Spy Talk,  said the FBI still faces problems retaining intelligence analysts, and is losing 6 percent to 12 percent a year.

“FBI officials stated the rate of attrition and time it takes to hire applicants affected the FBI’s ability to fill vacant intelligence analyst positions,” the Inspector General report stated.

“We also determined that, overall,” the report said, ” the FBI reduced its number of active cases between FYs 2005 and 2009 related to violent crime, counterterrorism, and white collar crime. During that time period, the FBI increased the number of active cyber crime, public corruption, civil rights, and criminal enterprise cases.”

The FBI responded to the report on Monday with a statement:

“We are pleased that this follow-up report concludes the FBI has improved its ability to monitor and evaluate its allocation and utilization of resources over the past five years. The FBI’s establishment of the Resource Planning Office has helped to manage personnel resources and ensure those resources are aligned with the FBI’s strategic goals. As reported, most FBI divisions are using resources as planned and did not experience significant change in the number of active investigations on priority matters over the last five years.”

Read the complete IG report

FBI Statement


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