Armenian Power Group Case Study Analysis
Competencies Addressed in This Assignment
- Competency 1: Apply white collar and organized crime investigation concepts.
- Competency 2: Analyze legal implications related to white collar and organized crime.
- Competency 3: Employ best practice techniques in evidence collection and documentation in relation to white collar and organized crime investigations.
- Competency 4: Communicate effectively in a variety of formats.
AP organized crime group has posed a significant challenge even for the EOCTF. No one agency has the technical expertise or experience to handle an organized crime group of this sophistication. The EOCTF would have to first begin placing the crime in context as to the size of the criminal enterprise; the crimes that were alleged to have been committed; the number of victims, if known; and the number of defendants. This information will be of paramount importance to the DOJ attorneys who would be prosecuting the case (DOJ, 2011).
Typically, when multiple agencies come together in a task force to investigate organized crime, the crime at issue is a pervasive, serious crime as with the AP. When investigating such crime, challenges are bound to surface. This is especially true when you integrate multiple law enforcement agencies into the investigation and form a multiagency task force like the EOCTF. From a multiagency response standpoint, building on the strengths of different agencies and individuals who are working on the investigation makes good sense.
When working with different agencies, and within the parameters of law, ethics, and agency protocols, the investigators should strive to maximize resources and knowledge for those involved in the investigation. Dismantling and disrupting major international and national organized criminal enterprises is a longstanding area of the FBI expertise. It has the experience and training to target criminal enterprises, the broad statutory jurisdictions to bring down entire organizations rather than just individuals, and a presence throughout the nation and the world (FBI, n.d.).
Once a case is initiated, task force members need to develop a working foundation for the criminal investigation and potential legal issues that could surface in conjunction with the investigation. There are many potential issues primarily related to the 4th and 5th Amendments that could surface in conjunction with grand jury testimony, executing a search warrant, processing a scene, and interviewing witnesses and suspects. These issues can be compounded in multiagency investigations, such as the AP case, where multiple cities throughout the country are involved and the use of wiretaps and informants is common. It is important to understand how jurisdiction, agency protocols, agency standards, and law come into play to provide a basis for a successful investigation and case conclusion. AP has been widely recognized as the quintessential example of an organized crime case that played out in the federal system. The case would become the largest and most complex organized crime investigation in the history of the FBI and spawn a unique investigative task force of prosecutors, agents, and analysts in California, Miami, and Denver. Their job: to learn how the AP perpetrated acts such as extortion, kidnapping, firearms trafficking, health care fraud, and identity theft; build a strong criminal case; and hold accountable those who are responsible for the crimes (FBI, 2011).
The AP organized crime group investigation would indeed prove to be formidable and complex for the EOCTF. During the multiagency investigation into the AP criminal enterprise, the task force was also able to identify the source of an information leak within the federal district court clerk’s office in Los Angeles. A clerk’s office employee and her husband were charged and later convicted for their roles in a scheme to access and disclose information contained in sealed court documents to tip off organized crime figures and gang members prior to their arrests. Some of those compromised records concerned individuals who were members or associates of the AP criminal enterprise and subjects of pending federal arrest warrants.
Additionally, in the AP crime group investigation court-authorized wiretaps on 25 different phone numbers were a key part of the case as was a series of complex undercover operations. Through these undercover operations and conversations, the task force were able to obtain a wealth of incriminating evidence as defendants spoke about targeting wealthy Armenians for robbery, planning check fraud activity, making illegal firearms deals, installing skimmers on ATMs, watering illegal marijuana plants in a warehouse, mailing illegal narcotics to customers, planning kidnappings, and extorting money from victims using threats of violence (FBI, 2015).
For this assignment, assume the role of an agent trainee for the FBI at the training academy in Quantico, Virginia. In this role, you are studying a broad range of subjects on the fundamentals of law, ethics, behavioral science, interviewing and report writing, basic and advanced investigative, interrogation, and forensic science. For one of your classes, you have been asked to conduct a case study analysis on a major organized crime case. You chose the AP case.
Using the resources provided, conduct a case study analysis on the AP group and write a 4–5-page paper on the analysis. Use the Case Study Template given in the resources.
In your case study analysis:
- Lay out an examination of organized crime investigation concepts in the context of the case study. The investigation concepts should include:
- A short description of what happened.
- Names of the offenders (both individuals and business entities). Include full names and occupations.
- Time period over which the offense occurred.
- Number and type of victims. Victims can include employees, consumers, investors, or governmental agencies.
- Assess the legal implications and impact of organized crime in the context of the case study by identifying the following:
- What are the alleged violations (charges)?
- When and where did the violations occur?
- What are the amount and type of losses?
- Examine the techniques in evidence collection and documentation in relation to organized crime in the context of the case study by including the methods used to:
- Gather evidence.
- Document evidence.
Your paper should meet the following requirements:
- Written communication: Must be free of errors that detract from the overall message.
- Resources and citations: Format according to current APA style and formatting guidelines.
- Length of paper: 4–5 typed, double-spaced pages, not including the title page, abstract, and reference page.
- References: A minimum of three references.
- Font and font size: Times New Roman, 12 point.