Semiannual Report to Congress

October 1, 2006-March 31, 2007
Office of the Inspector General

Message from the Inspector General

This was a busy and productive semiannual period for the Office of the Inspector General (OIG). Our audits, investigations, inspections, and special reviews continued to have an important impact on Department of Justice (Department) programs and operations.

The OIG issued two reviews required by the USA Patriot Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005 (Patriot Reauthorization Act) that examined the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) use of national security letters (NSL) and Section 215 orders to obtain business records. Our report on Section 215 orders did not find improper uses of that authority. However, our report on NSLs found significant problems in the FBI’s use of these letters, including inaccurate reporting to Congress on the number of letters issued by the FBI as well as a significant number of misuses of these letters. We are continuing to review the FBI’s use of NSLs and Section 215 orders and are monitoring the FBI’s corrective measures to address the problems that our review of NSLs identified.

We also conducted other noteworthy reviews and investigations. For example, we issued reports examining the Department’s reporting of terrorism statistics, the Department’s attempts to develop an Integrated Wireless Network that would permit federal law enforcement officers to communicate across agencies, the Department’s grant close-out process, the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) handling of cash seizures, the FBI’s control over its weapons and laptop computers, and the FBI’s efforts to develop its Sentinel electronic case management system. In addition, our Investigations Division handled sensitive criminal and administrative investigations of misconduct related to Department programs and operations.

The OIG also began a review of the Department’s involvement with the National Security Agency’s (NSA) program called the “terrorist surveillance program” or “warrantless surveillance program.” In addition, the OIG initiated a joint investigation with the Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility to examine issues related to the recent removal of several U.S. Attorneys.

During this period, the Department organized the National Procurement Fraud Task Force, which seeks to prevent, detect, and prosecute procurement and grant fraud. As part of that effort, the OIG is chairing the Grant Fraud Committee of the task force. We believe this task force and the Grant Fraud Committee are important initiatives that can help detect and deter fraud that can be committed with the billions of dollars in grants and contracts that the Department issues each year.

Finally, I want to express my appreciation for the cooperation and support we regularly receive from the Department and Congress. I also want to recognize the extraordinary dedication and professionalism of the OIG’s staff. With limited resources, the OIG has completed a wide range of significant reports and investigations, and OIG employees deserve great credit for their hard work.

Glenn Fine's signature
Glenn A. Fine
Inspector General
April 30, 2007

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