The Investigations and Forensic Science (IFS) Program serves as the investigative arm of FDLE, conducting independent and multi-jurisdictional investigations in partnership with local, state, and federal authorities in accordance with the Department’s Investigative Strategy. The Investigative Strategy focuses investigative efforts in five key areas:
- Domestic security
- Major drugs
- Violent crime
- Public integrity
- Fraud/economic crime
FDLE also provides specialized training, such as cyber security, gang investigations, and computer crime
, and gathers and shares information and intelligence with other criminal justice agencies through the Florida Fusion Center. Investigative services are delivered to Florida’s criminal justice community through a network of seven Regional Operations Centers and 14 field offices.
FDLE is responsible for administering the Florida Mutual Aid Plan which coordinates state and local law enforcement response during a declared state of emergency, including natural or man-made mass disasters. In addition, FDLE serves as the agency responsible for coordinating and directing counterterrorism efforts for the state of Florida, and works closely with the Division of Emergency Management and other federal, state, and local agencies to implement Florida’s Domestic Security
Strategy. The strategy is executed through Florida’s seven Regional Domestic Security Task Forces
, multi-disciplinary teams in place throughout the state to plan, prepare for, and respond to a terrorist attack. Each task force is co-chaired by a local sheriff or police chief and the FDLE Special Agent in Charge from the region and is comprised of representatives from law enforcement, emergency management, health, fire/rescue, agriculture, education, and private business partners.
In recent years, FDLE has implemented several innovative regional team concepts to add value to local investigations, including Child Abduction Response Teams (CART). Established in 2004, CART is a pool of pre-identified professionals from numerous agencies who rapidly deploy to child abduction cases with pre-established protocols and a multitude of resources to work in concert with local law enforcement to handle all aspects of the investigation. The program has been nationally recognized by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Department of Justice, the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.