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April 2, 2021Washington, DC, United StatesFirearms, Ammunition and Explosives

US, Canada establish cross-border task force to disrupt gun smuggling and trafficking

WASHINGTON, DC – A U.S.-Canada task force dedicated to disrupting and dismantling the illegal movement of firearms, ammunition, and explosive weapons across the U.S.-Canadian border was announced today by U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) in another step forward to address gun smuggling and trafficking.

The new task force will ensure that law enforcement partners on both sides of the border benefit from shared intelligence and information so that they can detect and intercept the illegal movement of firearms at the border, while ensuring the legal movement of goods and services remains uninterrupted. The U.S. and Canada partnering agencies include HSI, CBSA, the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), US Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Public Safety Canada, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), and various U.S. and Canadian police forces.

“As the primary federal law enforcement agency responsible for investigating international smuggling operations, we have full confidence in our ability to identify and prosecute criminal networks and individuals attempting to break these laws,” said HSI Ottawa Attaché Michael Buckley. “Through our strong partnership with Canada and our partnering law enforcement agencies, we will work to prevent the illegal export weapons and ensure they do not end up on the streets where they can be used to commit acts of violence.”

HSI is the primary federal law enforcement agency responsible for investigating international smuggling operations and enforcing U.S. export laws. The investigative strategy includes the identification and prosecution of criminal networks and individuals responsible for the acquisition and movement of firearms and other dangerous weapons from the United States, as well as the seizure and forfeiture of money and valuable property derived from or used to facilitate this criminal activity.

HSI is a directorate of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel, and finance move. HSI’s mission is to investigate, disrupt and dismantle terrorist, transnational and other criminal organizations that threaten or seek to exploit the customs and immigration laws of the United States.

HSI’s workforce of over 10,400 employees consists of more than 7,100 Special Agents assigned to 220 cities throughout the United States, and 80 overseas locations in 53 countries. HSI’s international presence represents DHS’s largest investigative law enforcement presence abroad and one of the largest international footprints in U.S. law enforcement.