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T5 B64 GAO Visa Docs 1 of 6 Fdr- 5-21-03 GAO Interview of FBI-DOJ Re GAO Findings on Visa Revocation 507

T5 B64 GAO Visa Docs 1 of 6 Fdr- 5-21-03 GAO Interview of FBI-DOJ Re GAO Findings on Visa Revocation 507

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FBI
"2..
5
Prepared
by: J.McCloskeyDate
Prepared:
5/23/03
Index:
FBI 2.5
DOC
Number:
888594
Job
Code:
320172
Record
of
Interview
Title
Dept.
of
Justice/FBI Exit Conference
Purpose
Toobtain
DOJ and FBI
officials'
views
on our findings
regarding
the
FBI's
role in the
visa
revocation process.
Contact
Method
In
person
Contact
Place
Dept.
of
Justice
Contact
Date
May
21,2003
Participants
DOJ
Kris Kobach, Office
of the
Attorney General
Laura Baxter,
Office
of the
Deputy
Attorney General
Vickie
Sloan,
GAO
Audit Liaison
DOJ/FBI
Mr.
Robert
E.
Casey,
Jr., Office
of
Intelligence,
rnnntprtprrnrism/Counterintelligence DivisioniCounterterrorismDivision
\
Mr.
TomRuocco, Special
Assistant,
Office
ofIntelligence,
Counterterrorism/Counterintelligence
Division
GAO
liaison (leaving
soon)
AO
liaison (new)
GAO/IAT
Mr.
John
Brummet,
Assistant
Director
Ms.
KateBrentzel,
Analyst
Ms.
Judy
McCloskey,
Senior
Analyst
For
phone numbers,
see
attached
list
(included
in w/p FBI 2.5
as attachment I)
Comments/Remarks:
We
provided the
officials
with a written synopsis of our FBI-related findings. The
findings
arelisted belowinitalics, followedby thecommentsof
DOJ/FBI
officialsinregular type.
State's
Notification
Sent
to FBI and FBI Followup
While
State generally
sent
information cables
to FBI to
notify
it
of
the
revocations,
FBI
officials
could
not provide us with
evidence
that units in the Counterterrorism Division received thesecables
from
the
bureau's main communication center.
(FBI officials
said that
the
agency's maincommunication center received
the
notifications
but
could
not
confirm
if
they were thendistributed internally to
appropriate
investigative units at the FBI.)
Page 1
Record
of
Interview
 
9/11
Law
Enforcement
Privacy
Prepared
by: J.
McCloskey
Index:FBI 2.5
Date
Prepared: 5/23/03
DOC
Number: 888594
Job
Code:320172
.
in the
country; thus, they
did not
attempt
to
clear,
remove,
or
prosecute
any
of
them. According
to INS and
State
data,
at
least
30
of
the 240
individuals whose visas were revoked
may
still
be in
ihe country.
FBI
officials
told
us
that,
in the
past, they
did not
routinely attempt
to
locate
and
investigate
individuals with revoked visas
who may
have entered
the
United
States.
They
did notdo
so
because
the
notification
cables State sent
to the FBI
"were information
only"
did not
specify
"possible
terrorist"
as the
reason
for the
revocation
and did not
request
FBI
action
on the
case.
Moreover, State
did not
attempt
to
make other contact with
the FBI
that would indicate
any
urgency
in the
matter.
Mr.
Casey
and|
]had
a
copy
of a
sample visa revocation cable that
State sends
to the
FBI,
which
they used to highlight problems in
State's
revocation notices to the bureau. They told usthat the FBI did not routinely open investigations as the result of
visa
revocations on terrorism
grounds
because the cable did not clearly indicate that
visas
had been revoked because the visaholder was a possible terrorist. In general, the cable as currently
constructed
as an
insufficient
mechanism
for requesting FBI action. For example, the cables were
sent
as "information
only"
and
did
not
request specific
follow-up
action
from
the
FBI.
In
addition,
the
cable does
not use theword
"terrorism" in the text. It
only
says the visa is revoked under
INA
section
212(a)(3). FBIagents wouldn't necessarily know this is the national security provision of the INA, or that
212(a)(3)(B) is the
terrorism
provision. Moreover,
State
did notattemptto
make
othercontact
with the FBI
that would indicate
any
urgency
in
following
up on
visa
revocations,
for
example,
State
never called over to ask for FBI action. Mr. Casey said that State has the obligation of
notifying
the FBI
immediately
and
directly
if it
believes
a
possible
terrorist
has
entered
the
country.
State should includeapointofcontactforeach caseon therevocation cable.
The
FBI
officials
said that if the cable is uploaded into the
FBI's
ACS (automated
cable
system),
then if
that person
is
already
under
investigation
by the
FBI,
the
investigator would know that
the
person had his
visa
revoked. However, a visa revocation cable alone would not trigger the FBI to
open
an
investigation
for
reasons
stated above.
Mr.
Casey said that
we
should familiarizeourselves with
the
Attorney General's guidelines
for FBI
investigations
so
that
we
know what type
of
FBI
followup
is
allowed
and
under what circumstances. (Note: These guidelines
are
contained
in
w/pFBI
1.11.)
Page
'2
Record
of
Interview
 
prepared
by: J.
McCloskey
Index: FBI 2.5Date
Prepared:
5/23/03 DOC
Number:
888594
Job
Code: 320172
In
order for the FBI to take action in specific
cases,
State's
revocation notice would have toinclude more
information/evidence
on why
State
thinks the individual might be a terrorist. The
information
should
be
sent
to the
Counterintelligence/Counterterrorism Division, which wouldthen direct it to the appropriate unit within the division that would determine whether the personhad already entered the country, and, if so, whether the FBI should locate, investigate, and takeappropriate action in each
case. Possible
units for
this
followup
could be either the ForeignTerrorist Tracking Task Force or the National Joint Terrorism Task Force, who would
funnel
the
information
to the local Joint Terrorism Task Forces. Mr. Casey said that in our report, we should
not
specify which unit within
the
Counterintelligence/Counterterrorism Division should receive
the
revocation
notice; instead,weshould allowFBImanagementtomake that decision.
On
March
12,2003,
FBI's
Foreign
Terrorist
Tracking
Task
Force reported
to
Congress
that
it hadcleared
76
of
the 105
individuals
whose visas
had
been revoked
due to FBI delays in
completing
Visas
Condor
name checks.
We
asked
for
additionalinformation
on
this group
of
105 individualsin February
2003.
As
of
May
16,
%)03,
the Department
of
Justice
had not
released this
information
to us.
Mr.
Casey, until recently the Director of the Foreign Terrorist Tracking Task Force, said that hehadpreparedaresponseto ourquestionsbutthat
DOJ
had notclearedtheresponse.
After
theexit conference, Ms. Sloan called me to say that DOJ realized the department should provide the
response
to us
as
soon
as
possible.
I
received
the
response
via
courier
at
4:05
pm
that day.
We
'
changed some
of the
wording
in the
report
draft
dealing with
the
above
two findings to
account
for
this new information.
FBI
Watchlist
FBI
officials
in
mid-May
2003
had not
determined whether
the
agency's watch list units
had
received
any
notice
of
visa
revocations.
Mr.
Casey
said
thatthe FBIonlyhas onewatch list
unit,
rather than pluralas we
stated
in our
finding.
The Foreign Terrorist Tracking Task Force
uses
data
from
many
agencies' watchlists;
ithas no watchlist of its own.
Page
3 Record of Interview

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