The DEA enforces federal laws and regulations related to the growth, production, or distribution of controlled substances. In addition, the DEA seeks to reduce the supply of and demand for illicit drugs, both domestically and internationally. The DEA has approximately 10,800 employees staffing its 21 division offices in the United States and the Caribbean and 80 offices in 58 other countries.
During this reporting period, the OIG received 210 complaints involving the DEA. The most common allegations made against DEA employees included misuse of a credit card, job performance failure, theft, and making false statements.
At the close of the reporting period, the OIG had 29 open cases of alleged misconduct against DEA employees. The following are examples of cases investigated during this reporting period:
- An investigation by the OIG’s Miami Field Office and the DEA led to an indictment alleging that a DEA office assistant stole $1,560 from the office’s imprest fund to pay her personal bills. During the OIG investigation, the office assistant admitted to taking the money. Judicial proceedings continue.
- The OIG’s Miami Field Office investigated allegations that a DEA special agent accepted an $80,000 loan from the family of a convicted drug trafficker, stole $12,000 in a fictitious traffic stop, and assisted a former confidential source in avoiding criminal charges. An OIG polygraph examination of the complainant, who was facing criminal charges, indicated signs of deception. In a post-test interview, the complainant admitted that he fabricated the allegations against the special agent in exchange for possible consideration concerning his pending criminal charges. The special agent was exonerated of the allegations.
Payments to Informants by the DEA
The OIG is assessing the DEA’s compliance with regulations and controls over its payments to confidential informants.