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Department of Homeland Security - ICE Undercover Operations Handbook, 2008

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Department of Homeland Security

Office of Investigations

Undercover Operations
Handbook
OI HB 08-04
April 14, 2008

OFFICIAL USE ONLY

Foreword
The Undercover Operations Handbook provides a single source of national policies, procedures,
responsibilities, guidelines, and controls for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Office
of Investigations (01) personnel when conducting undercover activities, investigations, and operations.
This Handbook contains instructions and guidance that will help to ensure uniformity and operational
consistency for personnel at 0 1 field ofices and 01 Headquarters. Policy and administrative oversight
of 0 1 undercover activities, investigations, and operations is the purview of the Unit Chief, Undercover
Operations Unit, Investigative Services Division, 01. This Handbook is available in the Handbook
section of the 01 Proprietary Web site.
Undercover operation resources designated for a specific certified undercover operation may be used
only when the desired expenditure is "reasonable and necessary for the conduct of the certified
undercover operation." Any deviation from the 01 statutory authority (1 9 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C.
5 1363a) will not be tolerated by 01 management. Failure to comply with the provisions of the 01
Undercover Operations Handbook or subsequent policies may result in disciplinary action, including
written reprimand up to removal. (See the ICE Table of Offenses and Penalties, Section 1-2, entitled
"Neglect of Duty.")
The ICE 0 1 Interim Undercover Operations Handbook dated September 2003, and all previous
policies, directives, handbooks, and other issuances regarding undercover operations are hereby
superseded. (See Appendix I for a more detailed list.)
The policies contained in this Handbook do not supersede any requirements of 0 1 directives or policies
related to general investigative activities unless specifically stated.
The mere existence of an undercover operation is considered law enforcement sensitive; sharing of any
information relating to an operation or this Handbook is restricted to a need-to-know basis. Individuals
who are not engaged in the conduct of operational investigations (or the direct support thereof) shall
not be permitted to have access to undercover assets, accounts, identifications, methods, techniques,
facilities, personas, or vehicles (leased via the undercover operation or Government-owned).
The Undercover Operations Handbook is an internal policy of 01 and is not intended to confer any
right or benefit on any private person or party. If disclosure of this Handbook or any portion of it is
demanded in any judicial or administrative proceeding, the 01 Information Disclosure Unit, Mission
Support Division (MSD), as well as the appropriate ICE Counsel and/or U.S. Attorney shall be
consulted so that appropriate measures can be taken to invoke privileges against disclosure. This
Handbook contains information which may be exempt from disclosure to the public. Any further
request for disclosure of this Handbook or information contained herein should be referred to the 0 1
Information Disclosure Unit.
The 01 Policy Unit, MSD, is responsible for coordinating the development and issuance of 01 policy.
All suggested changes or updates to this Handbook should be submitted to the 01 Policy Unit which
will coordinate all needed revisions with the 01 Undercover Operations Unit.
Approved
Date

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Undercover Operarions Handbook

OFFICIAL USE 0 i V f . l

UNDERCOVER OPERATIONS HANDBOOK
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE.........................................................................................1
Chapter 2 BACKGROUND AND AUTHORITY...................................................................1
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2.1
2.2
2.2.1
2.2.2
2.3
2.4
2.4.1
2.4.2
2.4.3

Objectives of Undercover Activities.........................................................2
Statutory Authority ...................................................................................2
Certification and Exemptions ...................................................................3
Misuse of Certification and Exemptions...................................................3
Department of Homeland Security Policy ................................................3
Sensitive Circumstances ...........................................................................4
DHS Sensitive Circumstances ..................................................................4
ICE Sensitive Circumstances....................................................................4
Use of Approved Electronic Documentation............................................4

Chapter 3 LEGAL/LIABILITY ISSUES ................................................................................4
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3.1
3.2
3.2.1
3.2.2
3.2.3
3.2.4
3.2.5
3.2.5(1)
3.2.6
3.3
3.4
3.4.1

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3.4.2
3.5
3.5.1
3.5.2
3.5.3
3.6
3.6.1
3.6.2
3.6.3
3.7

Procedures for Obtaining Legal Guidance................................................4
Participation in Otherwise Illegal Activities.............................................5
Justification ...............................................................................................5
Minimization.............................................................................................5
Prohibitions ...............................................................................................6
Self-Defense..............................................................................................6
General Authorization to Engage in Otherwise Illegal Activity...............6
Specific Authorization to Engage in Otherwise Illegal Activity ..............7
Authorization of Unforeseen Otherwise Illegal Activity..........................7
Criminal Activities that Result in Violence ..............................................8
Entrapment Issues .....................................................................................8
Inducements to Engage in Criminal Activity (Authorization
Requirements) ...........................................................................................8
Exception to Inducement Policy (Waiver)................................................9
Search Authority of Undercover Operatives.............................................9
Suspect’s Premises..................................................................................10
Oral Communications .............................................................................10
Removal/Copying of Documents or Property.........................................10
Alterations to Conveyances ....................................................................11
Documentation Required ........................................................................11
Transfer or Destruction ...........................................................................12
Non-Recovery .........................................................................................12
Third-Party Assistance............................................................................12

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3.7.1
3.7.2
3.8
3.8.1
3.8.2
3.9
3.9.1
3.9.2
3.9.3
3.10

Offers of Third-Party Gifts or Bequests..................................................12
Indemnification and Hold Harmless Agreements...................................13
Personal Assistance Agreement..............................................................13
PAA (When One is Required for an Undercover Operation) .................14
PAA (When One is Not Required for an Undercover Operation) ..........14
The Use of Private Insurance Within Certified Undercover Operations 14
Automobile Insurance.............................................................................14
Other Insurance.......................................................................................15
Insurance Claims to Maintain Covertness ..............................................15
Confidentiality ........................................................................................15

Chapter 4 ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES ...................................................................16
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4.1
4.2
4.3
4.3.1
4.3.2
4.4
4.5

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4.6
4.7
4.8
4.9
4.10
4.11
4.12
4.13
4.14
4.15
4.16
4.17
4.18
4.18.1
4.19
4.19.1
4.20

Assistant Secretary of ICE ......................................................................17
Director of OI..........................................................................................18
Undercover Review Committee (DHS and ICE)....................................19
DHS URC ...............................................................................................19
ICE URC.................................................................................................19
Deputy Assistant Director, Investigative Services Division...................20
Assistant Directors, Operations, and Deputy Assistant Directors,
Investigative Programs............................................................................21
Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit ................................................22
Undercover Liaison Coordinators...........................................................23
Unit Chiefs in ISD, Investigative Programs, and Operations .................23
Special Agent in Charge .........................................................................24
CUC Administrative Overseer(s)............................................................28
CUC Lead/Administrative Group Supervisor.........................................29
Investigative Group Supervisor ..............................................................30
CUC Program Manager ..........................................................................31
Case Agent ..............................................................................................32
Undercover Operative.............................................................................33
Cover Agent ............................................................................................35
Contact Agent .........................................................................................36
CUFFS Administrator.............................................................................36
CUFFS Administrator – Rotation ...........................................................37
Separation of Duties................................................................................37
Waiver of Requirement for Separation of Duties ...................................38
Position Titles (Savings Provision).........................................................38

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Chapter 5 UNDERCOVER OPERATION APPLICATION AND APPROVAL
PROCESS ...............................................................................................................39
• 5.1
• 5.2

Assessing the Need for an Undercover Operation..................................39
Who May Make Application for and Conduct Undercover
Operations ...............................................................................................39
• 5.3
Types of Undercover Investigations/Operations and Approval
Levels......................................................................................................40
• 5.3.1
Group Supervisor-Approved Undercover Investigations .......................40
• 5.3.2
SAC-Approved Investigations/Projects ..................................................40
• 5.3.3
Director of OI-Approved Operations......................................................40
• 5.3.3(1)
More Than 6 but Less Than 12 Months..................................................40
• 5.3.3(2)
Sensitive Circumstances Requiring Review by the URC .......................41
• 5.4
Undercover Operation Flow Chart..........................................................42
• 5.5
Certified Undercover Operation Application and Reauthorization
Procedures...............................................................................................43
• 5.5.1
Expansion to Additional Investigative Program Areas...........................43
• 5.5.2
Application and Reauthorization Proposal Format.................................43
• 5.5.2(1)
Application..............................................................................................43
• 5.5.2(2)
Reauthorization .......................................................................................45
• 5.5.3
Application and Reauthorization Procedures: Steps..............................45
• 5.5.3(1)
Application and Reauthorization Procedures: Scrub Meeting...............46
• 5.5.3(2)
Application and Reauthorization Procedures: Additional
Documents Required with Proposal........................................................47
• 5.5.3(3)
Applications and Reauthorization Procedures: Presentation
to the URC ..............................................................................................47
• 5.5.4
Review and Final Approval ....................................................................48
• 5.5.4(1)
Review by the ICE URC.........................................................................48
• 5.5.4(2)
Review by the DHS URC .......................................................................49
• 5.5.4(2.1) Review by the DHS URC: Department of Justice Non-Concurrence ...49
• 5.5.5
Title 21 Operations – Memorandum of Understanding with DEA.........50
• 5.5.5(1)
Title 21 Operations – DEA Non-Concurrence........................................51
• 5.6
Records of the URC to Be Maintained by the Undercover
Operations Unit.......................................................................................52
• 5.7
Exigent Approval ....................................................................................52
• 5.7.1
Exigent Approval – Procedures ..............................................................52
• 5.7.2
Exigent Approval – Procedures – Activities Involving the
DEA MOU ..............................................................................................53
• 5.8
Emergency Approval ..............................................................................54
• 5.9
Program Code Assignment/Case Tracking.............................................55
• 5.10
Duration of Authorization.......................................................................56
• 5.11
Unforeseen Circumstances......................................................................56
• 5.11.1
Unforeseen Circumstances: Operational Enhancements .......................56
• 5.11.2
Unforeseen Circumstances: Additional Sensitive Circumstances .........56
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• 5.11.3
• 5.12

Unforeseen Circumstances: Legal Issues...............................................57
Joint Undercover Operations ..................................................................57

Chapter 6 ADMINISTRATIVE AND FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT OF
UNDERCOVER OPERATIONS .........................................................................58
• 6.1
• 6.2
• 6.2.1
• 6.2.2
• 6.2.3
• 6.2.4
• 6.2.5
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6.3
6.4
6.4.1
6.4.1(1)
6.4.1(2)
6.4.1(3)

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6.4.1(4)
6.4.1(5)
6.4.2
6.4.3
6.4.4
6.4.5

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6.5
6.5.1
6.5.2
6.5.3
6.5.4
6.6
6.7
6.7.1
6.7.2
6.8
6.8.1

Certification Authority............................................................................58
Expending Funds from Certified Undercover Operations ......................58
Expenditures Must be Necessary and Reasonable for the Conduct of
the Operation...........................................................................................59
Expenditure Authorization (6-Month Expenditure Authorization
Plan) for Certified Undercover Operations.............................................59
Unforeseen Expenses that Will Exceed the Limit of the 6-Month
Expenditure Authorization Plan for Certified Undercover Operations ..60
Expenditure Flow Chart..........................................................................61
Use of Funds and Business/Purchase Exemptions (Purchases
Outside FAR) ..........................................................................................62
Use of CUC-Appropriated Funds ...........................................................62
Use of Proceeds.......................................................................................62
Control of Proceeds.................................................................................62
Reimbursement of Supporting Operations (within OI) ..........................63
Reimbursement of Other Participating Agencies ...................................63
Splitting Proceeds with Another OI Certified Undercover
Operation.................................................................................................64
Splitting Proceeds with Other Participating Agencies............................64
Splitting Proceeds with Foreign Law Enforcement Agencies ................65
Purchase of Information Using Proceeds................................................65
Purchase of Evidence Using Proceeds....................................................66
Payment of Overtime Using Proceeds ....................................................66
Payment of Travel Expenses Associated with Field Reviews of
Undercover Operations Using Proceeds .................................................67
Regulating the Amount of Proceeds Held by an Operation....................68
Limit on Amount of Proceeds Held ........................................................68
SAC Review of Proceeds Held ...............................................................68
Seizure of Proceeds from Ongoing Operations ......................................69
Deposit of Proceeds into the U.S. Treasury............................................70
Petty Cash Fund ......................................................................................70
Cash Advances........................................................................................70
SAC-Approved 30-Day Cash Advances.................................................71
Advances to Confidential Informants .....................................................71
Transactions Involving Confidential Informants ....................................72
Transactions Involving CIs – Payment of Stipends and/or
Commissions...........................................................................................72

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• 6.8.2
• 6.8.3
• 6.8.4
• 6.8.5
• 6.8.6
• 6.8.7
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6.8.7(1)
6.9
6.9.1
6.9.2
6.9.3
6.10
6.10.1
6.10.2
6.10.3
6.11
6.11.1
6.11.2
6.12
6.12.1
6.13

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6.14
6.14.1
6.14.2
6.14.3
6.14.4
6.14.5
6.14.5(1)
6.14.5(2)
6.15

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6.16
6.16.1
6.16.2
6.16.2(1)
6.17
6.17.1

• 6.17.2

Transactions Involving CIs – Approval of Stipend and/or
Commission Payments............................................................................73
Transactions Involving CIs – Methods for Paying Stipends and/or
Commissions...........................................................................................73
Transactions Involving CIs – Tracking and Documentation of
Stipends and/or Commissions.................................................................74
Transactions Involving CIs – POI...........................................................74
Transactions Involving CIs – Operational Expenses Incurred by a CI...75
Transactions Involving CIs – Payments to Third-Parties for Illegal
Services and/or POE ...............................................................................76
Transactions Involving CIs – Payments to CIs by Third-Parties............76
Currency Pick-up Operations..................................................................77
Currency Pick-up Log.............................................................................77
Currency Pick-up Transaction Approval ................................................77
Currency Pick-up/Target Directed Funds ...............................................77
File Systems Required for Undercover Activity.....................................78
Undercover Operations Unit File Requirements.....................................78
SAC Office File Requirements ...............................................................78
Certified Undercover Operation File Requirements ...............................79
Financial Records of a Certified Undercover Operation ........................80
Required Details (CUFFS Transactions) ................................................81
Backup of Data for CUFFS.....................................................................82
CUFFS Administrator for Certified Undercover Operations..................83
CUFFS Administrator – Separation of Duties ........................................83
Use of Undercover Credit Cards in Certified Undercover
Operations ...............................................................................................83
Bank Accounts (Covert and Overt).........................................................84
Control of Bank Accounts ......................................................................85
Bank Accounts with On-line Access ......................................................86
Reconciliation of Operational Bank Accounts .......................................86
Accounts in the Name of OI (Overt).......................................................87
Foreign Bank Accounts...........................................................................87
Establishing a Foreign Bank Account.....................................................88
Control of Funds in Foreign Bank Accounts ..........................................89
Deposit of Foreign Government Law Enforcement Funds into
ICE Undercover Accounts (Covert and Overt).......................................89
Safeguarding Funds ................................................................................90
Funds Deposited in Financial Institutions...............................................90
Safeguards Related to the Investment of Funds......................................91
Authorization Required to Place Funds in High-Risk Investments ........91
Expenditure Approval Levels (FAR and Non-FAR) ..............................91
Levels of Approval for Non-Property (Items That Will Not
Be Inventoried) .......................................................................................92
Levels of Approval for Property (Items That Will Be Inventoried) .......92

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6.18
6.18.1
6.18.2
6.18.3
6.19
6.19.1

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6.19.2
6.19.2(1)
6.19.2(2)
6.20
6.21
6.22
6.22.1
6.22.2
6.22.3
6.23
6.23.1
6.24
6.24.1
6.24.2
6.24.2(1)
6.24.3
6.24.4
6.24.5
6.24.6
6.25
6.26

Approval of Expenditures .......................................................................92
Approval of Expenditures (Exigent Circumstances) ..............................93
Receipts for Expenditures .......................................................................93
Substitute Receipts for Expenditures ......................................................94
Operational Purchases.............................................................................94
Purchases Outside the Scope of FAR Using the Business/Purchase
Exemption (Covert) ................................................................................94
Purchases Under FAR (Overt) ................................................................95
FAR Purchases Under $2,500 for Services or $3,000 for Supplies........95
FAR Purchases Over $2,500 for Services or $3,000 for Supplies..........95
Prohibited Expenditures..........................................................................96
Accounting for Certified Undercover Operation Property .....................97
Travel in Support of Undercover Operations..........................................98
Travel at Actual Expense (Approval and Documentation).....................98
Premium (Including First and Business) Class Travel ...........................99
Travel by Confidential Informants........................................................100
Covert Expenditures for Safety and Security........................................100
Cover Agent Expenses..........................................................................100
Funding Sources for Certified Undercover Operations ........................101
Proceeds ................................................................................................101
CUC-Appropriated Funds.....................................................................102
Reallocation (Reprogramming) of CUC-Appropriated Funds .............102
Recoverable Funds for Money Laundering ..........................................102
SAC Funds ............................................................................................103
Other ICE Funds ...................................................................................103
Non-Agency Funds ...............................................................................103
Lease Agreements.................................................................................103
Leased Vehicles ....................................................................................104

Chapter 7 MANAGEMENT CONTROLS AND REPORTING REQUIREMENTS
FOR UNDERCOVER OPERATIONS ..............................................................104
• 7.1
• 7.1.1
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7.2
7.3
7.3.1
7.3.2
7.3.2(1)
7.4
7.4.1
7.4.2
7.4.3

SAC Monthly Reports (Financial) ........................................................105
SAC Financial Reporting - Operation’s Financial Records to
Headquarters .........................................................................................106
SAC Petty Cash Review .......................................................................107
Headquarters Oversight ........................................................................107
Headquarters Oversight – Programmatic Units ....................................108
Headquarters Oversight – Undercover Operations Unit.......................108
National Program Managers - Undercover Operations Unit ................108
On-site Field Reviews of Certified Undercover Operations.................108
Frequency of On-site Field Reviews.....................................................109
On-site Field Reviews (Interviews) ......................................................110
On-site Field Reviews (Assessment) ....................................................111

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7.4.4
7.5
7.6
7.7
7.7.1
7.7.2
7.8
7.9
7.10

Independent Audits of Certified Undercover Operations .....................112
Financial Reporting – Headquarters Internal........................................112
Reporting Investigative Activities ........................................................112
Use of TECS CUC Program Codes ......................................................113
Primary Case File (TECS) ....................................................................113
Case Reports (ROI, Incident Reports) ..................................................113
Property Inventories of Certified Undercover Operations....................113
Undercover Identification Annual Inventory........................................115
Managing Transgressions Within Certified Undercover Operations....115

Chapter 8 TRAINING...........................................................................................................116
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8.1
8.1.1
8.1.2
8.1.3
8.1.4
8.1.5

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8.1.6
8.2
8.2.1
8.3
8.3.1
8.4
8.4.1
8.5

Undercover Operatives School .............................................................116
Requirements ........................................................................................116
Supervisors Acting in an Undercover Capacity....................................116
Non-ICE Employees Acting in an Undercover Capacity .....................117
Waiver for Undercover Operatives School...........................................117
Exemption for Equivalent Training for Other Federal and State
Agency Undercover Operatives............................................................118
Failure to Become Accredited ..............................................................118
Undercover Managers School...............................................................118
Waiver for Undercover Managers School ............................................119
Undercover Liaison Coordinator School ..............................................119
Requirements ........................................................................................119
CUFFS Administrator School...............................................................119
Waiver for CUFFS Administrator School ............................................119
Undercover Operations Unit Jump Team .............................................119

Chapter 9 UNDERCOVER IDENTIFICATION AND BACKSTOPPING.....................120
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9.1
9.1.1
9.1.1(1)
9.1.2
9.1.3
9.1.4
9.1.5
9.1.6
9.2
9.2.1
9.2.2
9.3
9.3.1

Personal Undercover Identification ......................................................120
Who May Obtain Personal Undercover Identification .........................121
Undercover Identification for CIs/Cooperating Defendants.................121
Federally-Issued Identification .............................................................121
State-Issued Identification ....................................................................122
Foreign Government-Issued Identification ...........................................122
Private Business-Issued Identification..................................................123
Control of Personal Undercover Identification.....................................123
Maintaining a Personal Financial History.............................................125
Individual (Personal) Undercover Bank Accounts ...............................125
Individual (Personal) Undercover Credit Cards ...................................127
Corporate Backstopping........................................................................128
Using Multiple Undercover Businesses................................................129

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Chapter 10 UNDERCOVER LIAISON COORDINATOR PROGRAM.........................129
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10.1
10.2
10.2.1
10.2.2
10.3
10.3.1

National ULC........................................................................................130
Primary/Secondary Field ULC .............................................................130
Primary/Secondary Field ULC – Prerequisites.....................................130
ULC Responsibilities ............................................................................131
Selection Procedures for Undercover Operatives (ULC’s Role)..........133
Exempt from Training Waiver for Operative Candidates.....................134

Chapter 11 TRAUMATIC INCIDENT RESPONSE (PSYCHOLOGICAL
SERVICES) .......................................................................................................134
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11.1
11.1.1
11.2
11.2.1
11.2.2

ULC Assistance ....................................................................................134
Contract Psychologist ...........................................................................135
Employee Assistance Program .............................................................135
Use of the EAP to Cope with Traumatic Incidents...............................135
EAP Assistance for Managers ..............................................................135

Chapter 12 UNDERCOVER ACTIVITY IN FOREIGN COUNTRIES..........................136
• 12.1
• 12.2

Domestic Undercover Investigations Involving Undercover
Activity in Foreign Locations ...............................................................136
Certified Undercover Operations Conducted in Foreign Locations .....136

Chapter 13 UNDERCOVER INTERNET ACTIVITY......................................................137
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13.1
13.2
13.3
13.4

Limited Undercover Internet Investigative Activities ..........................137
Certified Undercover Internet Investigative Activities.........................138
Maintenance of Electronic Subject Records .........................................139
Special Circumstances ..........................................................................139

Chapter 14 PROCEDURES FOR CLOSING CERTIFIED UNDERCOVER
OPERATIONS ...................................................................................................139
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14.1
14.2
14.3
14.3.1
14.3.1(1)
14.3.1(1.1)
14.3.1(1.2)
14.3.1(2)
14.3.2
14.3.2(1)

Notification of Intent to Close ..............................................................140
Closeout Report ....................................................................................140
Liquidation of Assets ............................................................................141
Monetary Assets (Proceeds and CUC-Appropriated Funds) ................142
Proceeds ................................................................................................142
Forfeiture...............................................................................................142
Deposit of Proceeds as Miscellaneous Receipts ...................................142
Return of CUC-Appropriated Funds.....................................................143
Property.................................................................................................144
Purchases Outside the Scope of FAR Using the Business/Purchase
Exemption (Covert) ..............................................................................144

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14.3.2(1.1)
14.3.2(1.2)
14.3.2(1.3)
14.3.2(1.4)
14.3.2(2)

• 14.4
• 14.5

Sale........................................................................................................144
Transfer .................................................................................................144
Forfeiture...............................................................................................146
Destruction............................................................................................146
Property Acquired Through the Use of the FAR Requirements
(Overt)...................................................................................................146
Closeout Audits.....................................................................................146
Closeout of CUFFS...............................................................................147

APPENDICES
Appendix A
Appendix B
Appendix C
Appendix D
Appendix E
Appendix F
Appendix G
Appendix H
Appendix I
Appendix J

Authorities.............................................................................................A-i
CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form...........................................B-i
Pick-Up Log for Undercover Operations..............................................C-i
Property/Equipment Log for Undercover Operations...........................D-i
Undercover Operation Monthly Financial Review Worksheet ............E-i
Table of Transgressions and Corrective Actions ..................................F-i
Glossary ................................................................................................G-i
Index .....................................................................................................H-i
Superseded Documents.........................................................................I-i
Acronyms..............................................................................................J-i

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UNDERCOVER OPERATIONS HANDBOOK
Chapter 1. PURPOSE AND SCOPE
The Undercover Operations Handbook establishes the United States (U.S.) Immigration
and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Office of Investigations (OI) policies and procedures
for the conduct of undercover activities, investigations, and operations within OI. (Note:
For the purposes of this Handbook, the term “covert” will be used interchangeably with
the term “undercover.”)
The policies in this Handbook will:
A. provide the greatest degree of flexibility to conduct undercover investigations
within the limits of the law and applicable regulations;
B. establish uniform and effective standards of oversight and accountability for
undercover activities; and
C. promote innovation and creativity to develop effective and successful
undercover investigations and operations.
The ICE OI Interim Undercover Operations Handbook dated September 2003, and all
previous policies, directives, handbooks, and other issuances regarding undercover
operations are hereby superseded. (See Appendix I for a list of additional documents that
are being superseded by this Handbook.)
The policies contained in this Handbook do not supersede any requirements of OI
directives or policies related to general investigative activities unless specifically stated.

Chapter 2. BACKGROUND AND AUTHORITY
With the enactment of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, Congress authorized ICE to
conduct undercover investigative operations to obtain evidence or information
concerning violations of laws enforced by ICE and stemming from the authorities of its
legacy agencies, the U.S. Customs Service (USCS) and the Immigration and
Naturalization Service (INS). Historically, ICE and its legacy agencies have effectively
conducted undercover operations that have resulted in some of their most successful
investigations. Undercover operations are highly effective tools when proper planning
and resources are available to support the inherent demands placed on operational
personnel. It is essential to recognize that the frequently changing scenarios influence the
operational and administrative needs of undercover operations. A commitment to
provide adequate support and managerial oversight is vital to the success of such
endeavors. OI is committed to targeting the highest level of organized criminal activity
possible while employing statutory exemptions and certifications found in Title 8, United
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States Code (U.S.C.), Section 1363a and 19 U.S.C. § 2081. Additionally, OI is
committed to adhering to policy authorizations necessary to conduct these types of
undercover operations.
2.1

Objectives of Undercover Activities

The following are potential objectives for conducting undercover activities or operations:
A. determine if a violation of law has occurred or is in progress;
B. identify specific violations of law;
C. identify violators, conspirators, and their methodologies;
D. disrupt and/or dismantle criminal organizations;
E. locate the violation sites and equipment used;
F. obtain evidence for prosecution and asset forfeiture;
G. determine the safest and most advantageous time to make arrests, execute
search warrants, and make seizures;
H. identify witnesses and cooperating individuals;
I. identify associations between conspirators;
J. check the reliability of sources of information and cooperating defendants;
and
K. gather intelligence that allows management to evaluate threats, reallocate
resources, and organize enforcement activity.
2.2

Statutory Authority

USCS was vested with the authority to conduct certified undercover (CUC) operations
through the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986, which enacted 19 U.S.C. § 2081; INS
received similar authority through the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant
Responsibility Act of 1996, specifically 8 U.S.C. § 1363a. With the enactment of the
Homeland Security Act of 2002, these statutory authorities transferred to the newlycreated Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and delegated to the Assistant
Secretary of ICE in DHS Delegation Number 7030.2, “Delegation of Authority to the
Assistant Secretary for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement,” and further
redelegated to the Director of OI in ICE Delegation Order 04-002 entitled, “Authority to
Certify the Exemption of Undercover Operations From Certain Laws Within U.S.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement.” In addition to granting the authority to engage
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in certain undercover activities without regard to particular provisions of the United
States Code, certain requirements were included that must be met when conducting
certified undercover operations.
2.2.1 Certification and Exemptions
8 U.S.C. § 1363a and 19 U.S.C. § 2081 provide for the granting of specific statutory
exemptions which allow ICE to engage in certain activities when conducting undercover
operations without violating particular federal statutes that would otherwise apply.
These exemptions may be employed only when the Assistant Secretary or designee as
allowed by statute (i.e., the Director of OI) certifies in writing that any actions authorized
under the exemptions are necessary for the conduct of the undercover operation. This
certification occurs through the application and approval process described in Chapter 5
of this Handbook. When it is necessary for the detection and prosecution of offenses
against the United States that are within the jurisdiction of the Secretary of Homeland
Security, the exemptions in 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a (see Appendix A for
the exact statutory language) allow ICE to:
A. use appropriated funds and/or proceeds to purchase/lease property, buildings,
and other facilities;
B. establish or acquire proprietary corporations or business entities as part of an
undercover operation, and to operate them on a commercial basis;
C. deposit appropriated funds and proceeds in financial institutions; and
D. expend proceeds from the operation to offset necessary and reasonable
expenses incurred in the operation.
2.2.2

Misuse of Certification and Exemptions

The use of a certified undercover operation’s operational assets acquired by and within
the operation for other than the conduct of the operation is strictly prohibited. The
Assistant Secretary may approve, in writing, the use of operational assets for other than
the conduct of the undercover operation in cases of national emergency.
2.3

Department of Homeland Security Policy

OI will comply with all DHS policy and procedures governing undercover operations.
Any DHS policy for undercover operations conducted by enforcement agencies within
DHS promulgated after the date of this Handbook must be complied with upon issuance.

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2.4

Sensitive Circumstances

A certified undercover operation is required for all undercover activities, investigations,
and operations involving DHS and/or ICE sensitive circumstances (defined in the
Glossary of this Handbook; see “Sensitive Circumstances – DHS and ICE”).
2.4.1

DHS Sensitive Circumstances

For the purposes of this Handbook, DHS sensitive circumstances will apply only to OI
undercover activities, investigations, and operations involving DHS employees, as well
as federal, state, and local task force officers (TFOs) or confidential informants (CIs)
acting under the direct and immediate supervision of an OI agent or TFO.
2.4.2

ICE Sensitive Circumstances

For the purposes of this Handbook, ICE sensitive circumstances will apply only to OI
undercover activities, investigations, and operations involving DHS employees, as well
as federal, state, and local TFOs or CIs acting under the direct and immediate supervision
of an OI SA or TFO.
2.4.3

Use of Electronic Documentation

The Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, may approve the use of electronic
documentation to meet the requirements set forth in this Handbook.

Chapter 3. LEGAL/LIABILITY ISSUES
The nature of undercover operations often requires an agent of the U.S. Government to
appear to be engaged in a criminal enterprise. While this is crucial to the successful
integration of undercover operatives (defined in the Glossary of this Handbook) with
those who commit illegal acts, it also creates unique legal issues. Managers and
undercover operatives must be cognizant of these issues to minimize legal challenges and
ensure successful prosecutions.
3.1

Procedures for Obtaining Legal Guidance

Undercover operations involve unique operational and administrative situations that have
resulted in many questions related to the practical application of legal principles. Policies
and procedures that address these questions must incorporate:
A. management’s obligation to ensure that adequate controls are in place; and
B. legal opinions and guidance obtained from ICE Counsel.

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This Handbook provides policies and procedures developed in consultation with ICE
Counsel. However, new situations and questions develop continually.
When questions arise related to legal matters and associated undercover policies,
A. OI operational management will contact the Undercover Operations Unit to
determine whether the issue has been previously addressed by Headquarters
ICE Counsel and/or existing policy; and
B. if the issue has not been addressed and the question implicates a national
policy or an issue likely to occur in more than one area, the Undercover
Operations Unit will request that Headquarters ICE Counsel provide an
opinion and/or develop new policies as needed; or
C. if the issue is determined to be of local concern, operational management will
contact the local ICE Counsel to request guidance. The local ICE Counsel
will coordinate with Headquarters ICE Counsel as necessary.
3.2

Participation in Otherwise Illegal Activities

Except when authorized pursuant to ICE policy and this Handbook, no undercover
operative will participate in any activity that would constitute a crime under federal, state,
or local law if engaged in by a private person acting without authorization. For the
purposes of this Handbook, such activity is referred to as an “otherwise illegal activity.”
The Special Agent in Charge (SAC) will consider, and approve when appropriate,
participation by an undercover operative in otherwise illegal activity only when such
participation is justified.
3.2.1 Justification
Possible justifications for otherwise illegal activity include the need to:
A. obtain information or evidence necessary to the success of an investigation not
reasonably available without participation in the otherwise illegal activity;
B. establish or maintain credibility of a cover identity where that credibility is
required for the investigative and/or operational activity and/or the safety of
the undercover agent or any other person; or
C. prevent death or serious bodily injury to any person.
3.2.2

Minimization

The SAC shall ensure that reasonable steps are taken to minimize the participation of an
undercover operative in any otherwise illegal activity.

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3.2.3

Prohibitions

Except as provided in this Section, an undercover operative shall not:
A. participate in any act of violence except in self-defense or the defense of
others (see the Interim ICE Use of Force Policy, dated July 7, 2004, or as
updated);
B. initiate, instigate, or induce others to initiate or instigate any plan to commit
criminal acts, except in accordance with Section 3.4.1 of this Handbook,
“Inducements to Engage in Criminal Activity (Authorization Requirements)”;
or
C. participate in conduct that would normally constitute unlawful investigative
techniques (e.g., illegal wiretapping, illegal mail openings, breaking and
entering, or trespass), unless approved by the local U.S. Attorney’s Office.
3.2.4

Self-Defense

Nothing in this Handbook prohibits an undercover operative from taking all reasonable
measures of self-defense in any emergency to protect his or her own life or the lives of
others.
Reasonable measures of self-defense include engaging in proscribed conduct when there
is a reasonable belief that to do otherwise would seriously endanger the life of an
undercover operative or another person. All incidents of self-defense or defense of others
involving such proscribed conduct must be reported through the local OI chain of
command to the SAC as soon as possible. In addition, the local ICE Counsel should be
notified. The SAC must immediately report such activity to the appropriate U.S.
Attorney’s Office as well as the Director of OI, who will in turn inform the ICE Assistant
Secretary and Headquarters ICE Counsel as appropriate.
3.2.5

General Authorization to Engage in Otherwise Illegal Activity

Approval of an undercover investigation or operation utilizing the appropriate procedures
described in this Handbook shall constitute authorization to participate in certain
otherwise illegal activity that is considered a crime under federal, state, or local law
except malum in se crimes (e.g., murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault). Otherwise
illegal activity includes:
A. the purchase of stolen or contraband goods;
B. the purchase of illegal and/or fraudulent immigration documents;
C. the delivery, sale, use, ownership, or possession by the U.S. Government of
contraband or stolen property whose ownership cannot be determined;
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D. the controlled delivery of drugs or other contraband that will not enter the
commerce of the United States;
E. the domestic transportation or concealment of illegal aliens when the undercover
operative does not have substantial control or direction of the scheme involving
the domestic transportation or concealment of illegal aliens (contact the Human
Smuggling and Trafficking Unit for the current policy and procedures related to
human smuggling and trafficking);
F. the payments of bribes which are not included in the other sensitive
circumstances;
G. the making of false representations to third parties in the concealment of personal
identity or the true ownership of a proprietary business (this exception does not
include any statement under oath or subject to the penalties of perjury); and
H. consensual monitoring of communications, even if it is a crime under state or
local law.
3.2.5(1) Specific Authorization to Engage in Otherwise Illegal Activity
Additional specific authorization to engage in otherwise illegal activity can be obtained
through the certified undercover operations process. (Refer to Sensitive Circumstances
(DHS and ICE) defined in the Glossary of this Handbook.)
3.2.6

Authorization of Unforeseen Otherwise Illegal Activity

If an undercover operative believes that it is necessary and appropriate, under the
standards set out in Section 3.2.1 above, “Justification,” to participate in otherwise illegal
activity that was not foreseen or anticipated, he or she should make every effort to consult
with the SAC who shall:
A. make all reasonable efforts to confer with the appropriate U.S. Attorney’s
Office;
B. seek approval following the standard procedures in this Section; and/or
C. approve the activities under exigent authorization, as appropriate.
If consultation with the SAC is impractical and the undercover operative concludes that
there is an immediate and grave threat to life, physical safety, or property, the undercover
operative may participate in the otherwise illegal activity, as long as the operative does
not take part in, and makes every effort to prevent, any act of violence. In cases where a
life or personal safety is immediately threatened, all reasonable force (discussed in the
Interim ICE Use of Force Policy, dated July 7, 2004, or as updated) may be employed in
self-defense or the defense of others to prevent death or serious injury.
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Reckless disregard for undercover policy may be grounds for disciplinary action or
criminal sanctions. If an undercover operative participates in such unforeseen otherwise
illegal activity, the following steps shall be taken:
A. The incident shall be reported through the local OI chain of command to the
SAC as soon as possible.
B. The SAC shall promptly submit a written report to the Deputy Assistant
Director (DAD), Investigative Services Division (ISD).
C. If necessary, the DAD, ISD, shall promptly present a request for retroactive
authorization to the Director of OI.
3.3

Criminal Activities that Result in Violence

If, during the course of an otherwise illegal activity, an undercover operative participated
in any manner in activities that resulted in violence, including injury to any person, the
events must be reported through the local OI chain of command as soon as possible. The
local ICE Counsel office shall also be notified. The SAC shall immediately thereafter
inform the appropriate U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Director of OI. The Director of OI
shall in turn notify the ICE Assistant Secretary and Headquarters ICE Counsel as
appropriate.
3.4

Entrapment Issues

Entrapment (as defined in the Glossary of this Handbook) is a complete defense to a
criminal charge and must be vigorously avoided to ensure that criminal prosecutions are
not adversely affected.
To succeed with an entrapment defense, the defendant must establish (1) government
inducement and (2) lack of predisposition to commit the crime.
Mere solicitation to commit a crime is not inducement, nor does the government’s use of
deceit or pretense establish inducement. Rather, inducement requires a showing of at
least persuasion or mild coercion. For purposes of inducements and entrapment,
government conduct includes conduct by government employees and contractors, as well
as CIs.
Additionally, the act of inducing a target to participate in a specific course of action does
not always give rise to the legal defense of entrapment. While the two are similar, an
inducement is an element of entrapment and, as such, does not in and of itself constitute
entrapment.
3.4.1 Inducements to Engage in Criminal Activity (Authorization Requirements)
Generally, no undercover operation may induce a person to engage in criminal activity.
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Exceptions to the general rule may be made under certain circumstances with specific
limitations:
A. The SAC must authorize all inducements. No undercover activity involving
an inducement to an individual to engage in a crime shall be authorized,
unless the SAC is satisfied that:
1) the illegal nature of the activity is reasonably clear to potential subjects;
2) the nature of any inducement offered is justifiable in view of the character
of the illegal transaction in which the individual is invited to engage;
3) there is a reasonable expectation that offering the inducement will produce
evidence of other illegal activities; and
4) one of the following criteria is met:
a) there is a reasonable indication that the subject is engaging, has
engaged, or is likely to engage in the illegal activity proposed or in
similar illegal conduct; or
b) the opportunity for illegal activity has been structured so that there is a
reasonable expectation that any persons drawn to the opportunity, or
brought to it, are predisposed to engage in the contemplated conduct.
B. All inducements should be closely coordinated with the appropriate U.S.
Attorney’s Office.
3.4.2

Exception to Inducement Policy (Waiver)

While not required by law, the requirement to meet one of the two criteria set forth in
Section 3.4.1(A)(4) is imposed to ensure that ICE does not offer inducements to engage
persons in criminal activity who are not predisposed to do so. These standards may be
waived by the Director of OI upon a written finding that the activities are necessary to
protect life or prevent other serious harm. The SAC should consult with the appropriate
U.S. Attorney’s Office concerning the need for any such waiver.
3.5

Search Authority of Undercover Operatives

It is constitutionally permissible for law enforcement officers to conduct criminal
investigations without revealing their official status or their clandestine purpose.
However, the extent of a search, the ability to seize or copy evidence, and the recording
of oral communications raise numerous complex legal issues. The courts have addressed
many of these issues, while others remain untested. If legal questions arise, managers
should obtain legal guidance from ICE Counsel (through the Undercover Operations Unit

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when national issues are involved) and/or the U.S. Attorney’s Office when appropriate.
This Section provides general guidelines in this area.
3.5.1

Suspect’s Premises

An undercover operative may legally enter a suspect’s premises if that operative has the
suspect’s consent, whether expressed or implied.
An operative may obtain evidence:
A. within the scope of the consent by which the operative gains entry; and/or
B. that is voluntarily revealed by the suspect (i.e., the plain view doctrine).
Free access to an area over a period of time may significantly expand the scope of a legal
search to those items to which the operative has reasonable access by virtue of the scope
of the suspect’s consent. For example, if an operative were a houseguest, it would be
reasonable to have access to the closet in the room where he or she was to sleep.
Under certain circumstances where an operative may have access to customer
information in a financial institution, a subpoena may be required to comply with the
Right to Financial Privacy Act. In these circumstances, consultation with the appropriate
U.S. Attorney’s Office and/or ICE Counsel is recommended.
3.5.2

Oral Communications

All conversations:
A. in which the operative participates; and/or
B. which can be overheard by an operative who has a legitimate right to be in a
location and where the person being overheard has no reasonable expectation
of privacy
can be testified to or recorded.
OI policy for obtaining approval regarding consensual monitoring and recordings shall be
followed. The current OI technical surveillance handbook should be consulted for further
legal and procedural guidance.
3.5.3

Removal/Copying of Documents or Property

Documents or property may be removed or copied:

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A. under the plain view doctrine if the operative has a lawful right to be in a
location and there is probable cause to believe that the item removed or copied
is seizeable (e.g., evidence of a criminal violation); or
B. if consent has been granted to be in that location or on the premises, and the
scope of the consent allows access to, and/or removal of, the documents
and/or property.
Examples include: (1) an operative employed as an accountant for a business or
company who is allowed access to records and documents; and (2) an operative acting as
an employee responsible for cleaning the warehouse or office and removing company
trash.
3.6

Alterations to Conveyances

Sometimes, during the course of an undercover investigation, it becomes necessary to
make alterations to vehicles, vessels, or aircraft. Whenever such alterations are made, a
Report of Investigation (ROI) shall be written which will include:
A. the reason for the alteration;
B. the specific description of the conveyance (vehicle, vessel, or aircraft)
including identification numbers;
C. a specific description of the changes made;
D. the names of any individuals involved in approving and making the
alterations; and
E. the applicable qualifications of the individual performing the work
(alterations).
3.6.1 Documentation Required
All documentation concerning the conveyance must reflect the use and maintenance
which occurred while the conveyance was used in support of an operation. When a
conveyance is no longer needed for an operation, it must be returned to its original state,
meeting all applicable federal, state, and local safety and administrative requirements.
When an aircraft is returned to its original state for general use, the flight logs to the
aircraft and service records must be modified to reflect activity during the operation.
All modifications and/or alterations to any aircraft must be completed by a Federal
Aviation Administration (FAA) certified mechanic (see the Federal Aviation Regulations,
Code of Federal Regulations, Title 14, Parts 43, 91[e], and 135, Maintenance and
Alterations). No alterations and/or modifications are authorized to any vehicle or

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conveyance if the alteration will cause risk to the life or safety of the violators or innocent
third parties without the written approval of the ICE Assistant Secretary.
3.6.2

Transfer or Destruction

If a conveyance that was altered for an ICE operation permanently leaves the control of
ICE because it is turned over to another authorized agency or was destroyed, the
circumstances of the loss of custody must immediately be recorded in an ROI. All effort
shall be made to acquire documentation that demonstrates that the altered conveyance
will not end up in the possession of an innocent third party (e.g., photographs of a
crashed aircraft or a written agreement from another agency).
3.6.3

Non-Recovery

If an altered conveyance is not recoverable because it is in the possession of a violator or
because it was inadvertently lost, the appropriate lookouts must be entered into the
National Crime Information Center and the Treasury Enforcement Communication
System (TECS) Case Management and linked to the case record. A copy of the lookout
will be included in the case file.
3.7

Third-Party Assistance

During the course of an undercover operation, ICE is sometimes in a position to benefit
from the assistance of private individuals or corporations. Although the assistance of
third parties can greatly facilitate the conduct of the operation, it can also raise serious
legal, ethical, and liability issues. Managers must ensure that, if third party assistance is
accepted, it conforms to legal limitations and does not give the appearance of conflict or
impropriety. It is recommended that any such assistance be discussed with ICE Counsel
prior to acceptance.
3.7.1

Offers of Third-Party Gifts or Bequests

A federal agency may not accept gifts or donations that would augment its appropriation
without specific statutory authority. Consequently, ICE cannot accept gifts of money or
property that aid and facilitate its work without congressional approval. Due in part to
legal considerations and, in particular, the appearance that private entities may be
influencing federal prosecutions, ICE may be reluctant to seek congressional approval.
Accordingly, all offers of gifts or bequests must have appropriate approval. To request
consideration for acceptance of property or money offered by a third party, a
memorandum from the SAC requesting concurrence will be sent to the Director of OI.
The memorandum shall include:
A. the name of the potential donor;
B. the donor’s past or present business and/or relationship with DHS;
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C. any restrictions on the use of the gift offered;
D. a statement of how acceptance of the gift will facilitate the work of DHS;
E. if the gift is physical property, the estimated fair market value at the time of
the donation;
F. a statement regarding the reason ICE is not paying for the item; and
G. a statement advising of the concurrence on the acceptance of the proposed gift
by both the local U.S. Attorney’s Office and the local ICE Counsel.
If the Director of OI concurs, a cover memorandum recommending approval will be
issued and the package will be forwarded to the Assistant Secretary for approval.
3.7.2 Indemnification and Hold Harmless Agreements
As a practical matter, indemnification and hold harmless agreements raise similar issues.
The legal effect of each is to provide security or protection against loss, damage, or
liability by creating an obligation or duty for one party to be responsible to the other.
Absent express statutory authority to the contrary, the U.S. Government may not enter
into an agreement to indemnify an individual, business, or other entity where the
Government’s liability is indefinite, indeterminate, or potentially unlimited. Such an
agreement would violate both the Anti Deficiency Act, 31 U.S.C. § 1341 et seq., and the
Adequacy of Appropriations Act, 41 U.S.C. § 11, because it would be uncertain if
sufficient funds would be appropriated to cover the contingency.
Certified undercover operations are exempt from the application of specific laws,
including, under certain circumstances, those governing indemnification and hold
harmless agreements. If there is a demonstrated need for such an agreement, the SAC
shall contact local ICE Counsel, which will coordinate with Headquarters ICE Counsel as
appropriate.
Undercover operations or activities that include indemnification and/or hold harmless
agreements in which the U.S. Government is agreeing to indemnify or hold harmless a
third party are listed as an ICE sensitive circumstance and should be treated as such.
3.8

Personal Assistance Agreement

A Personal Assistance Agreement (PAA) is an agreement between a CI and a SAC that
must be approved and signed by the Unit Chief, Investigative Support Unit (ISU), ISD,
which details the general activities and responsibilities expected of the CI. (See the ICE
Memorandum entitled, “New Headquarters Guidance on Confidential Informants,” dated
March 17, 2004, or as updated). The PAA places limitations on the CI’s behavior and

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states the amounts and methods of compensation, monetary or otherwise, which the CI
may receive if he or she adheres to the PAA.
The principal reason for a PAA is to limit the U.S. Government’s liability arising out of a
CI’s activities in connection with an undercover operation or investigation. Generally,
PAAs are recommended for all CIs who are working for a certified undercover operation.
(The ISU, ISD, should be contacted for the current policy regarding the documentation of
CIs.)
3.8.1

PAA (When One is Required for an Undercover Operation)

A PAA is required when a CI participates in an undercover activity associated with a
certified undercover operation and he or she receives a stipend or commission as a result
of services rendered in furtherance of that operation. In the case of a CI who receives
payments by electronic funds transfer (EFT), the PAA must contain the details of the
EFT (i.e., the CI’s bank name, address, and account number).
3.8.2 PAA (When One is Not Required for an Undercover Operation)
A PAA is not required when a CI is only providing information or participating in the
activity without receiving a stipend or commission as a result of services rendered in
furtherance of the operation.
Note: This Handbook does not supersede any requirements of ICE or OI policy related
to meeting with and debriefing sources of information or source file requirements. The
requirements and policies related to sources of information/CIs are the purview of the
ISU, ISD.
3.9

The Use of Private Insurance Within Certified Undercover Operations

The U.S. Government is “self insured”; as such, government funds are not to be used
to purchase insurance in order to protect against financial loss. This long-standing
government policy is based on guidance from the Comptroller General of the
Government Accountability Office. The magnitude of the U.S. Government’s resources
makes it more advantageous for the government to carry its own risk. (See 19 Comp.
Gen. 211, 214 (1939) and 798, 800 (1940).) However, the Comptroller General has
recognized exceptions to this general rule, including the purchase of insurance within
undercover operations, if the purpose is to maintain the cover and security of the
operation, not to protect against financial loss. (See Comp. Gen. B-204486, Jan. 19,
1982.) OI certified undercover operations may acquire minimal undercover insurance
policies to protect the covertness of their undercover endeavors.
3.9.1

Automobile Insurance

Operational personnel may have undercover vehicles (leased and/or owned) covered by
minimal insurance so that, if necessary, an undercover operative will not have to break
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from an undercover role and potentially compromise the operation or an investigation.
The undercover insurance policy should guard against exposure of the operation in cases
involving losses caused (or claimed to be caused) by an undercover vehicle.
When an accident involves serious bodily injury or death, the operator of the undercover
vehicle should identify himself or herself as a U.S. Government employee. However, if
circumstances are such that the immediate revelation of the operative’s true identity
would subject the operative or others to an immediate risk of bodily harm, then
covertness may continue.
3.9.2

Other Insurance

In situations (other than automobile) that require insurance policies in order to protect the
covert nature of the operation, operational personnel should follow the guidance above.
Undercover operations that have propriety storefronts and/or warehouses may purchase
adequate minimal undercover insurance policies in order to protect the operation’s
covertness and security.
3.9.3

Insurance Claims to Maintain Covertness

Filing a claim for financial loss against an undercover insurance policy requires
additional consideration under proper management discretion. During the course of an
undercover operation, the filing of an insurance claim against an undercover insurance
policy can be done when operational personnel can articulate the need to protect the
covertness and security of the operation. OI personnel have the authority to continue in
an undercover role in order to avoid compromising the operation.
Filing an insurance claim in an undercover capacity is an unresolved legal issue. Each
claim should be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. The SAC shall contact the
Undercover Operations Unit and local ICE Counsel prior to filing a claim in an
undercover capacity.
In situations where there is a management decision to remove the undercover persona
(e.g., there is absolutely no need at the time to maintain cover), claims against the
undercover insurance policy would not be proper. In these situations, operational funds
may be used (depending on the circumstances) to reimburse financial loss (U.S.
Government or third party), as the expense may be necessary and reasonable for the
conduct of the operation.
3.10

Confidentiality

The mere existence of an undercover operation is considered law enforcement sensitive;
sharing of any information relating to an operation or this Handbook is restricted to a
need-to-know basis. Individuals who are not engaged in the conduct of operational
investigations (or the direct support thereof) shall not be permitted to have access to

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undercover assets, accounts, identifications, methods, techniques, facilities, personas, or
vehicles (leased via the undercover operation or Government-owned).
The Undercover Operations Handbook is an internal policy of OI and is not intended to
confer any right or benefit on any private person or party. If disclosure of this Handbook
or any portion of it is demanded in any judicial or administrative proceeding, the OI
Information Disclosure Unit, Mission Support Division (MSD), as well as the appropriate
ICE Counsel and/or U.S. Attorney shall be consulted so that appropriate measures can be
taken to invoke privileges against disclosure. This Handbook contains information which
may be exempt from disclosure to the public. Any further request for disclosure of this
Handbook or information contained herein should be referred to the OI Information
Disclosure Unit.

Chapter 4. ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
This Chapter details the roles and responsibilities of those individuals involved in
undercover activities, investigations, and operations. It is intended to clearly define areas
of responsibility (AORs) to ensure that undercover activity is well-coordinated,
conducted safely, and conforms to policy.

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Undercover Investigations/Operations Management Organization Chart
Assistant Secretary
ICE
Director
Office of Investigations
Undercover Review
Committee

Unit Chief
Undercover Operations Unit
Special Agent in Charge

Certified Undercover
Operation

Undercover Investigative Activity
May or may not be part of a CUC Operation

CUC Administrative Overseer
(ASAC or higher)

Investigative ASAC
Reports all certified undercover
administrative issues to the
Administrative Overseer

Administrative Overseer may have dual
role as Investigative ASAC

Investigative GS

CUC Lead/Administrative
GS

Reports all certified undercover
administrative issues to the Lead/
Administrative GS

Administrative GS may have dual role
as Investigative GS

CUC Program Manager

ULC

Case Agent

Undercover Operative

Cover Agent

CUFFS Administrator

Note: The URC advises the Director of OI on matters related to certification and
authorization. The Undercover Liaison Coordinator (ULC) is responsible for matters
related to the well-being of the undercover operative, as enumerated in Section 10.2.2.
4.1

Assistant Secretary of ICE

The Assistant Secretary has the statutory authority to:

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A. provide written certification for any of the exemptions contained in 8 U.S.C. §
1363a and 19 U.S.C. § 2081 (delegated to the Assistant Secretary of ICE in
DHS Delegation Order Number 7030.2, entitled, “Delegation of Authority to
the Assistant Secretary for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement,”
dated March 1, 2003);
B. delegate this authority (delegated to the Director of OI in ICE Delegation
Order 04-002, entitled, “Authority to Certify the Exemption of Undercover
Operations From Certain Laws Within U.S. Immigration and Customs
Enforcement.”)
4.2

Director of OI

The Director of OI is responsible for:
A. providing written certification for the exemptions contained in 8 U.S.C. §
1363a and 19 U.S.C. § 2081 (delegated by the Assistant Secretary in ICE
Delegation Order Number 04-002);
B. approving, amending, or disapproving undercover operations involving
sensitive circumstances after considering the recommendations of the DHS or
ICE Undercover Review Committee (URC);
C. granting exigent certification for 30 days or less (with one additional 30-day
extension) in the event of exigent factors within an investigation/undercover
operation which otherwise requires review by the DHS or ICE URC;
D. approving the expense plan (6-month expenditure authorization) contained in
an operation’s undercover proposal and any subsequent revisions to a
previously approved level of expense authorization;
E. determining if expenses associated with an undercover operation are
necessary and reasonable for the conduct of the operation;
F. determining if any sensitive investigative matter not requiring review under
the current guidelines should be referred to the URC for review and
recommendations;
G. informing the Assistant Secretary, as appropriate, of incidents where an
undercover operative was required to use deadly force in the course of an
undercover assignment;
H. informing the Assistant Secretary, as appropriate, if an undercover operational
activity resulted in violence in the course of criminal activity, and if an
undercover operative participated, in any manner, in the criminal activity; and

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I. reporting to the Assistant Secretary, on a monthly basis, all premium class
travel approved by the Director of OI for undercover operations.
4.3

Undercover Review Committee (DHS and ICE)

4.3.1

The DHS URC is responsible for:
A. considering proposals, including funding requests and expenditure
authorization requests, for undercover operations that involve DHS sensitive
circumstances;
B. making recommendations, through the chairperson (DAD, ISD), to the
Director of OI regarding the approval, amendment, or disapproval of
undercover proposals;
C. when appropriate, recommending changes or additions to the undercover
operation’s administration and/or operational activities;
D. consulting with ICE Counsel about any significant and/or unsettled legal
issues concerning the authority for, or the conduct of, proposed undercover
operations;
E. considering any undercover operation that has been approved, reauthorized,
expanded or enhanced under exigent circumstances and making
recommendations per (A) and (B);
F. reviewing ongoing operations that have had or are planned to have a
significant change in direction or objective and making recommendations per
(A) and (B); and
G. considering any other business related to undercover operations assigned by
the Director of OI.

4.3.2

The ICE URC is responsible for:
A. considering proposals, including funding requests and expenditure
authorization requests, for undercover operations that involve ICE sensitive
circumstances;
B. making recommendations, through the chairperson (DAD, ISD), to the
Director of OI regarding approval, amendment, or disapproval of undercover
proposals;
C. when appropriate, recommending changes or additions to the undercover
operation’s administration and/or operational activities;

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D. consulting with ICE Counsel about any significant and/or unsettled legal
issues concerning the authority for, or the conduct of, proposed undercover
operations;
E. considering any undercover operation that has been approved, reauthorized,
expanded, or enhanced under exigent circumstances and making
recommendations per (A) and (B);
F. reviewing ongoing operations that have had or are planned to have a
significant change in direction or objective and making recommendations per
(A) and (B);
G. considering any other business related to undercover operations assigned by
the Director of OI; and
H. reviewing and making recommendations to the Director of OI regarding
retention requests for forfeited property that will be utilized in an undercover
operation.
4.4

Deputy Assistant Director, Investigative Services Division

The DAD, ISD, is responsible for:
A. ensuring full compliance with the OI undercover operations policy;
B. chairing the DHS and ICE URC and providing recommendations of the URC
to the Director of OI;
C. when appropriate, making recommendations to the SACs regarding proposals
for the establishment or reauthorization of an undercover operation prior to its
presentation to the URC;
D. making recommendations to the Director of OI regarding exigent requests for
approval, reauthorization, expansion, enhancement, or addition of sensitive
circumstances to an undercover investigation/operation;
E. making recommendations to the Director of OI regarding the allocation of
funding for undercover operations, including expenditure plans (6-month
expenditure authorization);
F. reporting to the Director of OI any known violation of law by an undercover
operative, employee, or source outside the scope of their authorization;
G. providing administrative and operational support to the SACs relating to
undercover investigative and operational needs and approvals; and

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H. approving waivers for separation of duties and training requirements related to
undercover activities.
4.5

Assistant Directors, Operations, and Deputy Assistant Directors,
Investigative Programs

The Assistant Directors (ADs), Operations (East and West), and the DADs, Investigative
Programs (National Security Investigations; Financial, Narcotics and Public Safety; and
Critical Infrastructure and Fraud), working in conjunction with the DAD, ISD, are
responsible for:
A. participating and voting in meetings of the DHS and ICE URC and ensuring
that appropriate personnel from their AOR attend the DHS and ICE URC;
B. making recommendations, through the DAD, ISD, to the Director of OI
regarding exigent requests for approvals, reauthorizations, expansions, or
enhancements of undercover operations;
C. when appropriate, making recommendations to the SACs regarding proposals
for the establishment or reauthorization of an undercover operation prior to
presentation to the URC;
D. making recommendations, through the DAD, ISD, to the Director of OI
regarding the funding and expenditure plan (6-month expenditure
authorization) for undercover operations;
E. coordinating administrative and operational matters with the SACs regarding
the creation and submission of proposals for undercover operations within
their respective AORs;
F. providing input at the scrub meeting on proposals in light of current
programmatic priorities and initiatives;
G. ensuring that all ongoing undercover operations are monitored regarding each
operation’s stated operational and programmatic objectives and that they are
being conducted within the required operational and programmatic policy
limitations (as applicable);
H. providing support to the SACs relating to undercover operational needs and
approvals; and
I. ensuring staff availability for participation in the undercover operation
application and reauthorization process, as well as undercover operation field
reviews.

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4.6

Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit

The Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, is responsible for:
A. the development and interpretation of OI’s undercover operations policy,
including conflict resolution, and for ensuring compliance with OI’s
undercover operations policy;
B. coordinating the authorization and certification of undercover operations by:
1) tracking the progress of the application and reauthorization process for
undercover operations;
2) scheduling and administering the scrub meeting related to application and
reauthorization proposals;
3) distributing copies of application and reauthorization proposals received
from the SACs to URC members prior to the URC meeting;
4) scheduling and coordinating URC meetings; and
5) maintaining the records of the URC;
C. providing input and advising SACs concerning the application and
reauthorization proposals in light of current policies, procedures, and
programmatic experience;
D. ensuring that individuals making presentations before the URC are properly
prepared;
E. conducting, maintaining the records of, and providing support to the field for
undercover programs related to the:
1) Certified Undercover Fundamental Financial System (CUFFS);
2) Undercover Backstopping and Identification Program;
3) Undercover Liaison Coordinators;
4) Undercover Field Review Program;
5) Undercover Training Program;
6) Undercover Policies;
7) Undercover Review Committee; and
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8) other undercover programs as directed;
F. liaise with other agencies on policy and procedural matters related to
undercover operations that require other agency Headquarters participation;
G. ensuring the appropriate dissemination of programmatic information that may
come directly to the Undercover Operations Unit at Headquarters; and
H. providing the DAD, ISD, with an assessment of administrative and
investigative performance through:
1) participation in the review, approval, and recertification process for
undercover operations;
2) review of monthly financial reports and related documentation;
3) participation in on-site field reviews of ongoing undercover operations;
4) review and evaluation of closeout reports and closeout audits; and
5) creation of undercover programmatic management reports as needed.
4.7

Undercover Liaison Coordinators
A. The National ULC is a Program Manager in the Undercover Operations Unit
is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the ULC Program.
B. The Primary Field ULC is responsible for overseeing the ULC Program
within the SAC’s AOR.
C. The Secondary Field ULC is responsible for reporting to the Primary Field
ULC.
Note: The ULC Program, along with its roles and responsibilities, are discussed
in detail in Chapter 10 of this Handbook.

4.8

Unit Chiefs in ISD, Investigative Programs, and Operations
The Unit Chiefs, ISD, Programs, and Operations (East and West), are responsible
for:
A. participating in, and voting at, the DHS and ICE URC;
B. coordinating all programmatic area concerns with the SACs regarding the
creation and submission of proposals for undercover operations within their
respective AORs;

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C. participating in the scrub meeting and providing input regarding the
application and reauthorization proposals in light of current programmatic
priorities and initiatives;
D. advising the SACs of the results of the scrub meeting for proposals for which
they are the designated lead program;
E. ensuring that personnel representing their AORs who are making
presentations before the URC are properly prepared and on time for the
presentation;
F. monitoring all ongoing undercover operations within their program area to
ensure that they are addressing national strategy goals and stated
programmatic objectives and that they are being conducted within any set
limitations, as applicable;
G. ensuring staff availability for participation in the undercover field reviews, as
needed;
H. providing the Undercover Operations Unit with all information related to the
administration of ongoing undercover operations as it relates to policy and the
review and approval/reauthorization process; and
I. making recommendations to the DAD, ISD, regarding funding of, and
expenditure authorizations for, undercover operations.
4.9

Special Agent in Charge

The SAC is responsible for every aspect of undercover activity, investigations, and
operations within his or her AOR. This responsibility encompasses all administrative and
operational aspects of an undercover operation.
The SAC is responsible for ensuring that all undercover investigative activity complies
with current policy and procedure, as well as overseeing OI’s obligation to utilize the
undercover statutory authority of 8 U.S.C. § 1363a and 19 U.S.C. § 2081 within his or
her AOR in a prudent and judicious manner.
The statutory authority and architecture of OI undercover operations allow extreme field
flexibility and discretion in order to maximize the use of OI’s resources while adhering to
statutory and policy requirements.
During the course of an undercover operation, the SAC is responsible for the periodic
review of the conduct (including any proposed or reasonably foreseeable conduct) of the
undercover operation, operational personnel, undercover employees, and others
participating in the undercover operation, and for:

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A. discussing any findings of impermissible conduct with the individuals
involved;
B. reporting any findings of impermissible conduct to the DAD, ISD; and
C. consulting with ICE Counsel on pertinent legal issues, especially agent/agency
liability.
Issues Related to the Administration of Undercover Operations
D. approving undercover operations that do not exceed his or her emergency
approval authority (as specified in Section 5.8 of this Handbook, “Emergency
Approval”) when emergency circumstances exist;
E. ensuring that all applications for undercover operations and proposals for the
reauthorization of current operations are in the correct format, contain all
information required, and are transmitted to OI Headquarters in a timely
fashion;
F. ensuring that all additional required documentation related to undercover
activity is forwarded to OI Headquarters in a timely fashion;
G. appointing the CUC Administrative Overseer(s);
H. reviewing and certifying the monthly financial statement of operations (see
Chapter 7, “Management Controls and Reporting Requirements for
Undercover Operations”);
I. determining that expenditures are necessary and reasonable for the conduct of
the operation, as well as within the spending levels (6-month expenditure
authorization) approved by the Director of OI;
J. ensuring that the CUFFS (QuickBooks) monthly financial email report is
transmitted to the Headquarters Undercover Operations Unit (see Chapter 7,
“Management Controls and Reporting Requirements for Undercover
Operations”);
K. reviewing and approving requests for operational travel regarding actual
expenses and/or expenses exceeding 150% of per diem (this authority may not
be delegated);
L. ensuring that all undercover operations are in compliance with reporting
requirements and internal controls established to provide financial and
administrative accountability, and that all damaged, lost or stolen CUC
property and lost or stolen monies is reported in a timely and accurate manner.

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M. providing timely notification to the DAD, ISD, of an intent to close a certified
undercover operation;
N. approving the operational necessity for the use of leased vehicles (every 6
months).
Issues Related to the Undercover Investigative Activity
O. ensuring that all investigations under a certified undercover operation involve
undercover activity or a direct nexus to undercover activity;
P. ensuring that the appropriate federal prosecutor is consulted on a continuing
basis by the appropriate OI manager, particularly with respect to legal
sufficiency and quality of evidence being produced;
Q. ensuring that adequate manpower and resources are provided for the safety
and security of the operation;
R. ensuring that undercover activities, investigations, and operations are
conducted and supervised in compliance with these guidelines.
Issues Related to Employees Acting in an Undercover Capacity
Prior to an undercover activity or operation (other than limited undercover work),
the SAC will ensure that employees acting in an undercover capacity:
S. are aware of the conduct that they are expected to adopt, as well as their
responsibilities enumerated in Section 4.15, “Undercover Operative”;
T. have successfully completed the Undercover Operatives School (UCOS),
except when a written exemption for completion of the UCOS has been
obtained from the DAD, ISD;
U. are fully aware of any of the sensitive circumstances (as defined in the
Glossary of this Handbook) that are reasonably likely to occur;
V. have been instructed in the law of entrapment;
W. are aware, if they learn that persons under investigation intend to commit a
violent crime, that they will make every reasonable effort to avert the violence
and shall report the information in an expeditious manner to OI management;
X. are instructed not to participate in any act of violence, initiate or instigate any
plan to commit violent criminal acts, use unlawful investigative techniques to
obtain information or evidence, or, except in an emergency situation as set out

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in Chapter 3 of this Handbook, engage in any otherwise illegal activity for
which prior authorization has not been obtained; and
Y. ensure that each undercover operative is assigned to, is aware of, and has
access to a SAC ULC.
In consultation with the Primary Field ULC, Deputy SAC, Assistant SAC (ASAC),
Resident Agent in Charge (RAC) (as appropriate), and Group Supervisor (GS), the SAC
will:
AA. nominate qualified candidates for the UCOS;
BB. select SAs, after consultation with the Primary Field ULC, for specific
undercover assignments, based on careful consideration of temperament,
type of investigation, and role to be undertaken, as well as the number of
recent undercover projects in which the agent has participated;
CC. submit requests for a waiver from undercover training requirements for
potential undercover operatives to the DAD, ISD, through the Unit Chief,
Undercover Operations Unit. This requirement applies to both OI agents
and any other law enforcement officers working under or attached to OI (see
Section 8.1, “Undercover Operatives School”);
DD. ensure that undercover operatives are not utilized to such an extent that the
stress of undercover work or their repeated use as undercover operatives
adversely affects their psychological well-being, safety, or career;
EE. approve all requests for undercover identification;
FF. ensure that a file containing all undercover identification is maintained and
that an annual inventory of undercover identification is completed. The file
shall have all original undercover identification not currently being used by
the undercover operative, as well as copies of all undercover identification
currently being used by the undercover operative; the file should also
include (as appropriate) a memorandum, signed by the SAC, approving the
retention of undercover identification and the issuance of any personal
undercover bank accounts and credit cards, including their account numbers
(see Section 9.1, “Personal Undercover Identification”); and
GG. ensure that all federally-issued undercover identification which is no longer
needed is returned to the Undercover Operations Unit and that any loss of
federally-issued identification is promptly reported via memorandum to the
Undercover Operations Unit.

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4.10

CUC Administrative Overseer(s)

The SAC-appointed CUC Administrative Overseers shall be second-line supervisors
(ASACs or higher-graded officials) with undercover investigative/operational
management experience. This position is mandatory in SAC Offices that maintain
certified undercover operations. The CUC Administrative Overseer(s) is responsible for:
A. serving as the primary decision-maker for matters which relate to the
administration (including operational expenditures) and oversight of certified
undercover operations assigned by the SAC;
B. ensuring that an operation’s resources are used for the greatest benefit of the
OI mission;
C. ensuring that the operation has the authorization to conduct investigations
involving DHS and/or ICE sensitive circumstances that are involved or are
reasonably likely to be involved;
D. oversight of the Undercover Operation’s CUC Lead/Administrative GS
related to the administration of the certified undercover operation;
E. ensuring that all operational personnel are aware of, and in compliance with,
current undercover policies and procedures;
F. advising the SAC of needed changes to any local undercover policies and
procedures;
G. ensuring that the required separation of duties is maintained within the
undercover operation;
H. ensuring that a complete annual physical inventory of all items on the
Property/Equipment Log for the certified undercover operations (Appendix D)
is conducted in a timely manner;
I. ensuring that expenditures are necessary and reasonable for the conduct of the
operation, as well as within the spending levels (6-month expenditure
authorization plan) approved by the Director of OI;
J. ensuring that assigned undercover operations are in compliance with reporting
requirements and internal controls established to provide financial and
administrative accountability; and
K. ensuring that the CUC Lead/Administrative GS and Investigative GS(s) carry
out their respective roles and responsibilities.

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4.11

CUC Lead/Administrative Group Supervisor

The CUC Lead/Administrative GS is a first-line supervisor, appointed by the SAC, with
the responsibility and authority to manage, monitor, coordinate, and direct all
administrative aspects of the certified undercover operation.
Note: This supervisor may, and presumably will, have the dual role of CUC
Lead/Administrative GS and Investigative GS (see Section 4.12, “Investigative Group
Supervisor”).
Note: In certified undercover operations that involve more than one GS or multiinvestigative group operations, it is recommended that the CUC Lead/Administrative GS
report directly to the CUC Administrative Overseer on matters related to the certified
undercover operation. It is highly recommended that the CUC Lead/Administrative GS
be in the CUC Administrative Overseer’s direct chain of command.
The CUC Lead/Administrative GS is responsible for:
A. ensuring the development and submission of undercover application and
reauthorization proposal which conforms to current policy;
B. ensuring that the proposal for application or reauthorization is complete and
transmitted to Headquarters in a timely fashion;
C. reviewing the CUFFS monthly financial report prior to transmittal to OI
Headquarters and ensuring the proper maintenance and updating of the
CUFFS (QuickBooks) record-keeping system;
D. reviewing monthly financial reports for the proper use of funds, the accuracy
of their recordation, and making recommendations to the SAC regarding the
approval of the monthly financial reports;
E. ensuring that reports, fiscal requests, and recertification proposals are
submitted in a timely manner;
F. ensuring that the records and files specified in Section 6.10.3, “Certified
Undercover Operation File Requirements,” are established and properly
maintained;
G. ensuring that the expenditures are necessary and reasonable for the conduct of
the operation as well as within the spending levels (6-month expenditure
authorization plan) approved by the Director of OI;
H. ensuring that the information necessary to comply with undercover policy is
provided to the CUC Administrative Overseer;

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I. ensuring that the CUFFS Administrator for the operation is changed at an
appropriate time (see Section 4.18.1, “CUFFS Administrator – Rotation”).
J. Ensuring that, for the purposes of deconfliction, undercover operational bank
account numbers are placed in TECS Case Management, as appropriate (only
the UC account number and SAC contact information are required).
K. assigning a property officer and ensuring that proper documentation
pertaining to the permanent assignment or temporary use of property listed in
the Property/Equipment Log for Undercover Operations is in accordance with
the provisions of this Handbook.
4.12

Investigative Group Supervisor

The Investigative GS is a first-line supervisor responsible for managing, coordinating,
and directing investigations within his or her supervisory control that are using the
statutory exemptions and sensitive circumstances authorization of a certified undercover
operation.
Note: The CUC Lead/Administrative GS who administers the certified undercover
operation may have a dual role of both Lead and Investigative GS.
The Investigative GS is responsible for:
A. providing supervision relating to day-to-day operational and strategic
decisions and on-site guidance relating to undercover policies and procedures
for undercover activities conducted under his or her supervisory control;
B. ensuring that full and complete operational plans are generated and approved,
and for conducting complete operation briefings prior to any undercover
activity;
C. ensuring that the operation has the authorization to conduct investigations
involving DHS and/or ICE sensitive circumstances that are involved or are
reasonably likely to be involved within investigations under his or her
authority; immediately advising the undercover operation’s CUC
Lead/Administrative GS of any anticipated additional sensitive circumstances
that are not included in the operation’s authorization;
D. ensuring that all investigations under his or her control involve undercover
activity or a direct nexus to undercover activity prior to being placed under the
certified undercover operation;
E. ensuring that sufficient resources are in place to provide necessary safety and
security measures prior to undercover activities, including making sure that an

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undercover activity pre-briefing is held and attended by all law enforcement
officers who will be involved in the activity;
F. monitoring the overall health of the undercover operatives, in consultation
with the Primary Field ULC, to ensure that investigative objectives do not
take precedence over the well-being of the operative;
G. ensuring proper coordination of undercover operational activities with OI
Headquarters, foreign offices, and other agencies;
H. ensuring that all activities and enforcement results under his or her control
related to an operation are promptly entered into TECS Case Management and
linked to the program code of the undercover operation;
I. ensuring that information under his or her control needed for reports, budget
requests, and recertification proposals are provided to the operational CUC
Lead/Administrative GS in a timely manner;
J. ensuring that all expenditures under his or her control are properly approved,
documented, and transmitted to the CUC Lead/Administrative GS (all
operational expenses should be coordinated with the CUC
Lead/Administrative GS prior to the expense);
K. ensuring full coordination with the SAC Asset Identification and Removal
Group (AIRG), as applicable;
L. ensuring that target telephone numbers are provided to the OI Special
Operations Unit personnel, as appropriate;
M. ensuring that all undercover related telephone numbers, including but not
limited to, numbers established in ICE offices, at undercover off-sites, or
under the control of undercover operatives, informants, and cooperating
defendants are provided to the OI Special Operations Unit for inclusion into
its Undercover Database for the purpose of deconfliction; and
N. ensuring that target bank and other financial account numbers are entered into
TECS Case Management, as appropriate.
4.13

CUC Program Manager

The CUC Program Manager is a Senior Special Agent (GS-1811-13) selected by the
CUC Lead/Administrative GS and/or the CUC Administrative Overseer(s) and approved
by the SAC. The CUC Program Manager will be in the CUC Lead/Administrative GS’s
chain of command. The CUC Program Manager will have the responsibility and
authority (through the CUC Lead/Administrative GS) to coordinate all administrative
aspects of a particular certified undercover operation. If the individual holding this
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position does not have approval authority within an operation, he or she will coordinate
approvals with the appropriate supervisor.
Note: If no CUC Program Manager is designated for an operation, the responsibilities
enumerated fall to the CUC Lead/Administrative GS.
The CUC Program Manager is responsible for:
A. developing and submitting to the CUC Lead/Administrative GS the
undercover proposal for reauthorization which conforms to current policy;
B. providing guidance relating to the day-to-day operational and strategic
decisions and on-site guidance relating to undercover policies and procedures
for undercover activities conducted under the operation;
C. reporting any issues regarding the overall health of the undercover operatives
to the appropriate supervisor and Primary Field ULC;
D. monitoring the maintenance and updating of the CUFFS (QuickBooks)
record-keeping system;
E. advising the CUC Lead/Administrative GS regarding the appropriate time for
changing the operation’s CUFFS Administrator as appropriate and required by
policy (see Section 4.18.1, “CUFFS Administrator – Rotation”);
F. facilitating the investigative GS’s responsibility for the proper coordination of
operational activities with OI Headquarters, foreign offices, and other
agencies;
G. reviewing monthly financial reports for proper use of funds and accuracy;
H. monitoring all activities and enforcement results related to an operation and
facilitating their proper placement in TECS Case Management;
I. determining that required reports, budget requests, review/audit responses,
and recertification proposals are submitted in a timely manner;
J. determining that the records and files specified in Section 6.10.3, “Certified
Undercover Operation File Requirements”, are established and properly
maintained; and
K. determining that all expenditures are properly approved and documented.
4.14

Case Agent

The Case Agent (including any assigned TFO) is responsible for:
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A. making the day-to-day operational and strategic decisions involving
undercover investigations and activities in conjunction with the undercover
operation’s management;
B. ensuring that full and complete operational plans are generated and approved
and complete operation briefings take place prior to any undercover activity;
C. preparing and presenting investigative findings to the U.S. Attorney’s Office
for prosecution;
D. making frequent contact with the undercover operative to monitor case
activities and identify operational requirements (except in cases of deep,
isolated undercover (see Section 4.17, “Contact Agent”));
E. continually directing case activities toward a successful conclusion;
F. reporting all case activities and statistics in TECS Case Management in a
timely manner;
G. providing target telephone numbers to the OI Special Operations Unit, as
appropriate;
H. ensuring that target bank and other financial account numbers are entered into
TECS Case Management, as appropriate;
I. keeping his or her Investigative GS apprised of all case-related activities;
J. immediately advising his or her Investigative GS and the undercover
operation’s CUC Lead/Administrative GS of any anticipated additional
sensitive circumstances that are not included in the operation’s authorization;
and
K. providing a written case summary to his or her Investigative GS for inclusion
in the operation’s reauthorization proposal.
4.15

Undercover Operative

An undercover operative is most often an OI agent (or any other ICE officer approved in
writing by the Director of OI) acting in an undercover capacity. An undercover operative
may also be a law enforcement officer of another federal, state, or local law enforcement
agency who voluntarily works under the direction and control of OI in a particular
investigation. An undercover operative’s relationship with law enforcement is concealed
from third parties during the course of an investigative operation.

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The performance of an undercover role is a voluntary activity, and refusal to perform in
such a role is not grounds, in and of itself, for disciplinary action. The undercover
operative, in consultation with the Investigative GS, must be familiar with the safety
precautions to be utilized for a particular undercover activity.
No ICE employee will perform in an undercover role (except in limited undercover
activities, as defined in the Glossary of this Handbook – see “Undercover Activity”)
without (1) attending, passing, and being accredited through an undercover operative
training course sanctioned by the OI Undercover Operations Unit (see Section 8.1,
“Undercover Operatives School”), or (2) a temporary waiver signed by the DAD, ISD.
(See Section 8.1, “Undercover Operatives School.”)
Note: OI SAs are required to have 3 years of criminal investigative experience prior to
attending the ICE OI Undercover Operatives School and performing in an undercover
role other than limited undercover activity. (See Section 8.1, “Undercover Operatives
School.”)
With the exception of OI personnel, no employee of a government and/or law
enforcement organization shall perform the functions of an undercover operative (except
limited undercover activities) within an ICE undercover investigation without written
approval from both the Director of OI (such approval may be delegated to the DAD, ISD)
and a senior manager who is equivalent to a second-line supervisor (ASAC or higher)
from the organization where the operative is employed. Attendance and successful
completion of the UCOS shall constitute such approval.
OI supervisors and managers shall not act as undercover operatives except in situations of
extraordinary circumstances and need, and with the written approval of the DAD, ISD.
The undercover operative is responsible for:
A. immediately advising his or her supervisor, as well as the Case Agent and the
Field ULC, of any reluctance to continue participation in undercover
activities;
B. understanding what activities are expected;
C. understanding what activities are likely to occur in undercover scenarios;
D. knowing the objectives and strategy of the undercover activities;
E. knowing the elements of the crimes being investigated;
F. understanding all legal and policy matters related to undercover
investigations, in particular those relating to:
1)

sensitive circumstances;

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2)

proper conduct;

3)

entrapment;

4)

search authority;

5)

acts of violence; and

6)

the carrying of a firearm and the use of alcohol in an undercover
capacity as defined in the Interim ICE Firearms Policy and the Interim
ICE Use of Force Policy, both dated July 7, 2004, or as updated.

G. immediately informing his or her GS of participation in otherwise illegal
activity that was unforeseen and not previously authorized in accordance with
Chapter 3, “Legal/Liability Issues”;
H. immediately informing the appropriate law enforcement authority of credible
information suggesting that the life or safety of any person is in serious
danger;
I. refraining from undercover activities (excessive drinking, immoral acts, and
misconduct) that could jeopardize the prosecution of targets of undercover
investigations;
J. ensuring that an undercover activity pre-briefing is held and attended by all
law enforcement officers who will be involved in the activity; and
K. being cognizant of possible issues with inadvertent meetings with undercover
targets.
4.16

Cover Agent

The cover agent is an SA or TFO whose primary purpose during an undercover meeting
is to ensure the security of the undercover operative. The cover agent is responsible for:
A. placing the safety and security of the undercover operative first;
B. ensuring that his or her role in the security of undercover activities is clearly
understood for all operational contingencies, including the use of pre-briefings
attended by all law enforcement officers who will be involved in the activity;
C. reporting any relevant case activities in TECS Case Management in a timely
manner; and
D. keeping the Case Agent apprised of all case-related activities.

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4.17

Contact Agent

The contact agent is a Senior SA or higher-graded official (with undercover identity and
experience) used in deep undercover (as defined in the Glossary of this Handbook)
situations and responsible for maintaining regular contact with the undercover operative
to:
A. pass on and receive information relating to investigative activity and strategies
without compromising the undercover operative’s role;
B. relay to management any instances of unforeseen illegal activity or threat to
the safety of the undercover operative and/or third persons; and
C. monitor the undercover operative for safety concerns, signs of stress, or any
reluctance to continue, and report these to the appropriate manager(s) and the
ULC.
4.18

CUFFS Administrator

The CUFFS Administrator is an OI employee who maintains the books and records of the
certified undercover operation.
Note: The CUFFS Administrator (Record-Keeper) of a certified undercover operation
must be an OI employee. The Director of OI may waive this requirement on a case-bycase basis.
CUFFS Administrators who occupy the position as a collateral duty are prohibited from
simultaneously being the CUFFS Administrator for more than one certified undercover
operation. Upon a showing of compelling need, the DAD, ISD, may waive this
prohibition on a case-by-case basis for a period not to exceed 1 year. It is highly
recommended that the CUFFS Administrator be in the chain of command of the CUC
Lead/Administrative GS.
For financial control and oversight in a certified undercover operation, it is imperative to
maintain a separation of duties between the requesting, approving, and recording
functions of/for expenditures within an operation; therefore, no waiver shall be issued for
the separation of these functions.
The CUFFS Administrator is responsible for:
A. maintaining the financial books and records of the certified undercover
operation in compliance with the CUFFS Manual;
B. ensuring that all financial transactions are entered into CUFFS in an accurate
and timely manner;

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C. ensuring that sufficient documentation (i.e., receipts, invoices, memoranda,
etc.) is maintained for each expenditure in order to meet audit requirements;
D. immediately notifying the CUC Lead/Administrative GS and/or the CUC
Program Manager of any improper expenditures;
E. generating the required monthly financial reports and providing them to the
CUC Lead/Administrative GS and/or the CUC Program Manager for review;
F. ensuring that all property purchased with operational funds is properly listed
in the Property/Equipment Log for Undercover Operations (Appendix D);
G. reporting any gross violations of OI undercover operational financial policy to
the Headquarters Undercover Operations Unit.
4.18.1 CUFFS Administrator – Rotation
Because of the high demands that can be associated with the job of CUFFS
Administrator, managers need to ensure that the CUFFS Administrator is not kept in a
position where either stress-related problems or career stagnation occurs. To guard
against these possibilities, the CUFFS Administrator shall have the option of being
rotated out of that position without any adverse effects. Recommended rotations are as
follows: SA or Criminal Research Specialist, 2 years; administrative or clerical series
personnel, 4 years. This time limitation may be waived by the Unit Chief, Undercover
Operations Unit, on a case-by-case basis upon written request of the SAC and a showing
of extreme resource limitations.
The CUFFS Administrator will have the option of remaining in the position if he or she
so desires. If the CUFFS Administrator is an agent or a Criminal Research Specialist, he
or she must submit a written request to remain as CUFFS Administrator, through the
appropriate channels, to the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit. The request must
be approved in writing by the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, for the requesting
employee to remain as CUFFS Administrator for more than 2 years. If the CUFFS
Administrator is from an administrative or clerical series, a written request by the
employee must be submitted through the appropriate channels to the Unit Chief,
Undercover Operations Unit, and approved in writing in order to remain as CUFFS
Administrator for more than 4 years.
This policy regarding time limitations on the CUFFS Administrator position does not
apply if the position description of the employee includes financial CUFFS Administrator
duties.
4.19

Separation of Duties

Due to the intensive requirements of the positions and the need for internal controls, a
separation of duties must be maintained between the following operational roles:
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A. CUC Administrative Overseer(s)
B. GS (Lead and Investigative) and CUC Program Manager
C. Case Agent(s)
D. Undercover Operative(s) (other than limited undercover activity)
E. CUFFS Administrator
4.19.1 Waiver of Requirement for Separation of Duties
If the SAC determines that, because of resource limitations and the nature of the
undercover operation, an exception to the separation of duties policy is warranted, a
justification and waiver request memorandum must be prepared and forwarded to the
DAD, ISD, through the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, requesting a waiver and
providing the need and a justification for the non-separation of duties.
If approved, a memorandum documenting the waiver will be transmitted to the initiating
SAC and maintained by operational personnel. Additionally, a copy of the waiver will be
maintained in the undercover operation’s master file maintained by the Undercover
Operations Unit.
Unless otherwise stated, waivers for separation of duties will expire 1 year from the date
of the approval. Continuation of dual roles will require a renewal of the waiver prior to
its expiration.
Except in extraordinary circumstances, the following will apply:
A. a separation of duties waiver will not be granted for a GS and undercover
operative.
B. a separation of duties waiver will not be granted for a Case Agent and
undercover operative (other than an operative involved in limited undercover
activity for which no waiver is required) within the same investigation.
4.20

Position Titles (Savings Provision)

The position titles (job titles) used in this Handbook shall be changed as the Agency’s
position titles change; this savings provision allows for the transition of position titles. In
the event of position title and management structure changes, the position titles in this
Handbook will be assumed by the new position titles that have the responsibilities of the
previous position titles. When position responsibilities are split or when there is no
logical position responsibility migration, the Director of OI shall identify, by means of a
memorandum, the new position titles for the previous position titles’ responsibilities.

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Chapter 5. UNDERCOVER OPERATION APPLICATION AND APPROVAL
PROCESS
5.1

Assessing the Need for an Undercover Operation

When considering the development of an undercover operation, the risks and benefits of
the operation must be considered. Some of the factors managers must consider are the:
A. risk of personal injury to individuals, property damage, financial loss to
persons or businesses, damage to reputation, or other harm to innocent
persons;
B. risk of civil liability or other loss to the U.S. Government;
C. risk that individuals engaged in undercover operations may become involved
in illegal activity that is not essential for producing the expected operational
results; and
D. suitability of law enforcement participation in the type of activity that is
expected to occur.
Undercover operations should be planned to minimize sensitive circumstances and reduce
the risks of harm and intrusion that are created by such circumstances.
Other factors to consider are:
A. coordination with other DHS agencies regarding the availability and suitable
use of DHS assets (e.g., U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) air and
marine assets);
B. coordination with the CBP National Law Enforcement Communications
Center when undercover activity is anticipated; and
C. coordination with the appropriate ICE Attaché (1811 series) regarding
undercover activity issues relating to foreign travel, the use of foreign bank
accounts, and the conduct of undercover activities in foreign countries (see
Chapter 12, “Undercover Activity in Foreign Countries”).
5.2

Who May Make Application for and Conduct Undercover Operations

Only OI agents (1811-series employees), under the supervision of a SAC, may make
application for and conduct undercover operations controlled by this Handbook.
Note: In the case of Headquarters-run undercover operations, “SAC” should be
replaced with “Unit Chief” throughout this Handbook.

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5.3

Types of Undercover Investigations/Operations and Approval Levels

5.3.1

Group Supervisor-Approved Undercover Investigations

The GS (through the authority of the SAC) may approve, in TECS Case Management or
otherwise in writing, undercover investigations/projects which:
A. are anticipated to last less than 6 months from the first undercover activity;
B. do not involve DHS and/or ICE sensitive circumstances (defined in the
Glossary of this Handbook); and
C. do not require the use of any of the statutory exemptions contained in 19
U.S.C. § 2081 and/or 8 U.S.C. § 1363a.
Note: The SAC must approve requests for the use of consensual monitoring.
5.3.2

SAC-Approved Investigations/Projects

The SAC may approve, in TECS Case Management or otherwise in writing, undercover
investigations/projects that require the use of consensual monitoring and/or electronic
audio surveillance of undercover conversations or activities and that do not involve
sensitive circumstances or the use of the statutory exemptions.
When it becomes apparent that an ongoing investigation/project will continue for more
than 6 months beyond the first undercover activity, the SAC must request the
authorization to continue the investigation/project from the Director of OI. This is
accomplished by submitting a memorandum, in the standard format, through the Unit
Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, to the Director of OI. The memorandum should
contain a synopsis of the relevant facts and a request for the authorization to continue the
investigation/project.
5.3.3

Director of OI-Approved Operations

5.3.3(1) More Than 6 but Less Than 12 Months
The Director of OI may approve undercover investigations/projects without review by the
URC when the activities:
A. do not involve DHS and/or ICE sensitive circumstances (defined in the
Glossary of this Handbook);
B. do not require certification for any of the exemptions contained in 19 U.S.C. §
2081 and/or 8 U.S.C. § 1363a; and

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C. the investigation/project will last longer than 6 months for the first undercover
activity.
The SAC shall submit a memorandum for review and approval of such
investigations/projects to the Director of OI, through the Unit Chief, Undercover
Operations Unit. The memorandum, in the standard format, should contain a synopsis of
the relevant facts and a request for the authorization for the investigation/project.
5.3.3(2) Sensitive Circumstances Requiring Review by the URC
The Director of OI may certify and approve undercover operations after review by the
URC when the activities:
A. involve DHS and/or ICE sensitive circumstances (as defined in the Glossary
of this Handbook); and
B. may or may not require certification for the exemptions contained in 19
U.S.C. § 2081 and/or 8 U.S.C. § 1363a.
Undercover activities and operations that involve sensitive circumstances must be
reviewed by the appropriate DHS or ICE URC as described in Section 4.3, “Undercover
Review Committee (DHS and ICE),” and Section 5.5.4, “Review and Final Approval.”
When ongoing activities will include sensitive circumstances, a proposal in the standard
format must be submitted by the SAC for the URC’s review and forwarded to the
Director of OI for authorization and certification.

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5.4

Undercover Operation Flow Chart
UNDERCOVER
INVESTIGATION / PROJECT

CERTIFICATION &
AUTHORIZATION*
STATUTORY
EXEMPTIONS
NEEDED

YES

SENSITIVE
CIRCUMSTANCE

DIRECTOR,
OFFICE OF
INVESTIGATIONS
8 U.S.C. § 1363a
19 U.S.C. § 2081

Y
E
S

NO

REVIEW
BY
UNDERCOVER
REVIEW
COMMITTEE

YES
SENSITIVE
CIRCUMSTANCE

URC
RECOMMENDATIONS

NO

GREATER
THAN
6 MONTHS

YES

AUTHORIZATION
DIRECTOR,
OFFICE OF
INVESTIGATIONS

NO

AUTHORIZATION
SAC LEVEL APPROVAL

* CERTIFICATION FOR STATUTORY AUTHORITY / AUTHORIZATION TO CONDUCT
INVESTIGATIONS THAT INCLUDE SENSITIVE CIRCUMSTANCES.

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5.5

Certified Undercover Operation Application and Reauthorization
Procedures

Depending on the circumstances involved and the requisite level of approval, the
procedures for the review and approval process of undercover operations will vary (see
Section 5.4, “Undercover Operation Flow Chart”).
Unless otherwise indicated, the procedures described in this Section are applicable to
both applications for new operations and requests for reauthorization of existing
operations.
Each office proposing an undercover operation must maintain files that include copies of:
A. operation proposals; and
B. correspondence to and from OI Headquarters regarding authorization and
certification.
Field managers are encouraged to work closely with the appropriate Headquarters
Program Managers/Desk Officers, the Undercover Operations Unit, and local ICE
Counsel when considering the submission of an undercover proposal. The Headquarters
Program Managers/Desk Officers will assist by providing advisory assistance to ensure
that the proposal adequately addresses national priorities and strategies. The Undercover
Operations Unit will provide advisory assistance to ensure that the application is
thorough and complete.
5.5.1

Expansion to Additional Investigative Program Areas

When an existing operation requires expansion to include additional programmatic areas,
the SAC will submit an expansion request in the appropriate format required by the
Undercover Operations Unit. An operational expansion can be accomplished concurrent
with the operation’s reauthorization. An expansion authorization may also be
accomplished under exigent circumstances following the requirements for exigent
approval specified in Section 5.7, “Exigent Approval.”
Note: Since the format for submitting expansion requests is subject to change, the
Undercover Operations Unit should be contacted to obtain the most recent version.
5.5.2

Application and Reauthorization Proposal Format

5.5.2(1) Application
Proposals for the initial authorization of certified undercover operations must conform to
the format dictated by the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit. The proposals should
be concise but contain enough details to identify, to the extent possible, known targets
and expected violations. The following information must be included in all proposals:
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A. date the application will be presented to the URC;
B. proposed name of the operation (the name must be vetted through the
Undercover Operations Unit to avoid duplication of operational names);
C. investigative programmatic area(s);
D. short overview (for each investigative programmatic area) concerning the
undercover methods to be employed by the operation to infiltrate the target
individual(s)/organization(s), including the specific investigative focus of the
operation (i.e., a contraband smuggling investigation that provides drug
transportation services);
E. identification of the targets (individuals, organizations, or systems) of the
operation and the significance of those targets and the illegal activities;
F. the objective(s) of the operation;
G. the investigative strategy which will be employed;
H. the need for the use of exemptions under 8 U.S.C. § 1363a and 19 U.S.C. §
2081 necessary for the conduct of the operation (justifications for the use of
each of the exemptions requested must be included);
I. a description of both DHS and ICE sensitive circumstances (defined in the
Glossary of this Handbook) likely to occur in the operation;
J. the results anticipated over the next 6 months;
K. expenditure authorization and funding requested;
L. source information;
M. the extent to which the operation can continue without compromise;
N. the extent to which the continuation of the operation may cause injury,
financial or otherwise, to the operatives or innocent third parties; and
O. other information required by the Director of OI and/or the URC.
Note: Since the format for submitting a proposal for the initial authorization of a
certified undercover operation is subject to change, the Undercover Operations Unit
should be contacted to obtain the most recent version.

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5.5.2(2) Reauthorization
Proposals for the reauthorization of certified undercover operations must conform to the
format dictated by the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit. The proposals should be
concise but contain enough details to identify, to the extent possible, known targets and
expected violations. The following information must be included in all proposals:
A. items listed in Section 5.5.2(1), “Application”;
B. a narrative incorporating any changes to the original proposal;
C. a summary of the preceding 6 months’ operational activity;
Note: Significant emphasis will be given by the URC only to those events or
enforcement activities occurring within the 6 months preceding
reauthorization and the enforcement activity anticipated in the following 6
months. The application for reauthorization should not reiterate the activity
reported in the initial application or previous reauthorization proposals.
D. the extent to which the operation has produced the results initially anticipated;
E. the potential for future success;
F. the extent to which the investment of resources is warranted in light of
identified targets of the operation and investigative priorities; and
G. other information required by the Director of OI and/or the URC.
Note: Since the format for submitting a proposal for the reauthorization of certified
undercover operations is subject to change, the Undercover Operations Unit should be
contacted to obtain the most recent version.
5.5.3

Application and Reauthorization Procedures: Steps
A. The SAC writes the proposal (Application/Reauthorization).
B. The SAC forwards the proposal to the Undercover Operations Unit and
Investigative Programmatic Unit(s).
C. The Undercover Operations Unit conducts the scrub meeting.
D. The SAC edits the proposal, based on the scrub meeting, and forwards it to the
Undercover Operations Unit.
E. The URC makes recommendations.

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F. authorization and certification are obtained from the Director of OI.
5.5.3(1) Application and Reauthorization Procedures: Scrub Meeting
The proposal and any other documentation not available in TECS Case Management,
including a memorandum from the appropriate ICE Counsel, letter(s) of support from the
appropriate U.S. Attorney’s Office, and a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) SAC
concurrence letter (if applicable) must be provided to the Unit Chief, Undercover
Operations Unit, and simultaneously to the appropriate Operations Chief and/or
Investigative Programmatic Unit Chief. (See Section 5.5.3(2), “Application and
Reauthorization Procedures: Additional Documents Required with Proposal.”)
The primary purpose of the scrub meeting is to determine if proposals meet the minimum
requirements for:
A. sufficiency of content and form;
B. compliance with programmatic priorities;
C. legality; and
D. specificity of operational mission.
The scrub meeting will take place on the first Wednesday of each month (unless
rescheduled by the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit). Participants in the scrub
meeting will review the proposal and related documentation available in TECS Case
Management. During this initial Headquarters review of undercover proposals, the
Undercover Operations Unit, in conjunction with the appropriate Unit Chief(s), will be
responsible for assessing any request for appropriated funds as well as any expenditure
authorization being requested.
The reviewers will also recommend the appropriate level of URC review (DHS or ICE)
of the proposal, according to the operation’s sensitive circumstances.
If the scrub meeting reveals issues that require a revision of the proposal:
A. the designated programmatic/operations Unit Chief will provide a detailed
account of the required changes via email (or memorandum) to the SAC,
incorporating the combined comments of the scrub meeting reviewers;
B. copies of the email or memorandum, along with the proposal, will be retained
by the appropriate programmatic/operations Unit Chief and by the Undercover
Operations Unit;
C. the SAC will provide a revised proposal to the designated programmatic/
operations Unit Chief and the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit; and
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D. the SAC will ensure that ICE Counsel, the U.S. Attorney’s Office, and/or any
other agency are notified of any substantive changes that are made to the
application and/or reauthorization package after the scrub meeting.
5.5.3(2) Application and Reauthorization Procedures: Additional Documents
Required with Proposal
A. SAC memorandum to the Director of OI requesting certification and
authorization/recertification and reauthorization.
B. U.S. Attorney concurrence letter (from the core U.S. Attorney’s Office) to the
SAC stating that:
1) the office has reviewed the proposed operation, including the sensitive
circumstances reasonably expected to occur;
2) the office concurs with the proposal and its legality; and
3) the office will prosecute meritorious cases that are developed;
C. U.S. Attorney acknowledgement letter(s) (from the U.S. Attorney’s Office
that has venue and is reasonably expected to prosecute operational cases) to
the SAC stating that:
1) the office understands that certified undercover operational assets will be
utilized in the U.S. Attorney’s AOR; and
2) the office will prosecute meritorious cases developed in the U.S.
Attorney’s venue.
D. ICE Counsel legal opinion memorandum to the SAC stating that there are no
legal impediments to the certification/authorization.
E. Local DEA SAC concurrence letter to the ICE OI SAC, if applicable.
F. Any additional documents as may be required.
5.5.3(3) Application and Reauthorization Procedures: Presentation to the URC
A. The individuals making the presentation of the proposal to the URC will be
determined by the DAD, ISD, in consultation with the Unit Chief, Undercover
Operations Unit, and the affected investigative programmatic Unit Chiefs,
along with the SAC.

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B. Presentations to the URC that require SAC personnel will be made by an
ASAC or higher. The Headquarters Program Manager(s) will make
presentations not requiring SAC personnel.
Note: Although it is not required, the SAC and the U.S. Attorney or any member of their
staff may attend URC meetings to provide additional details about an undercover
proposal.
5.5.4

Review and Final Approval

The appropriate procedure for review and approval of an undercover proposal is based on
the need for authorization to conduct investigations that include sensitive circumstances
(see Section 5.4, “Undercover Operation Flow Chart”).
5.5.4(1) Review by the ICE URC
The ICE URC will be chaired by the DAD, ISD, and will consist of the members
specified in the Glossary of this Handbook. The ICE URC will meet and review
proposals that involve ICE sensitive circumstances but not DHS sensitive circumstances.
The ICE URC will meet on the third Wednesday of every month unless rescheduled by
the Unit Chief, Undercover Operation Unit.
The following procedures will apply:
A. Following the satisfactory completion of the scrub meeting, the Undercover
Operations Unit will provide copies of the proposal to the members of the ICE
URC.
B. The ICE URC will meet, hear presentations, and review the proposal.
C. The ICE URC shall vote to recommend to the Director of OI the approval,
amendment, or denial of authorization and certification.
D. At the conclusion of the meeting, the Chairperson shall prepare a
memorandum documenting the recommendations of the URC and forward it
to the Director of OI for action (i.e., certification and authorization).
E. After action by the Director of OI, the SAC will be notified of the decision in
writing by the Undercover Operations Unit;
F. A copy of all relevant documents will be retained in the SAC office’s
undercover operation’s permanent records.
G. A copy of the complete proposal and certification package will be retained in
the Undercover Operations Unit’s permanent records.

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5.5.4(2) Review by the DHS URC
The DHS URC will be chaired by the DAD, ISD, and will consist of the members
specified in the Glossary of this Handbook. The DHS URC will meet and review
proposals that involve DHS sensitive circumstances. The DHS URC will meet on the
third Wednesday of every month unless rescheduled by the Unit Chief, Undercover
Operations Unit. ICE will have the final decision on operational matters such as
investigative techniques and resource allocation.
The following procedures will apply:
A. Following the satisfactory completion of the scrub meeting, the Undercover
Operations Unit will provide copies of the proposal to the members of the
DHS URC (non-DHS members will not receive expenditure (budget) and
source information).
B. The DHS URC will meet, hear presentations, and review the proposal.
C. The DHS URC shall vote to recommend to the Director of OI the approval,
amendment, or denial of authorization and certification.
D. At the conclusion of the meeting, the Chairperson shall prepare a
memorandum documenting the recommendations of the URC and forward it
to the Director of OI for action (i.e., certification and authorization).
E. After action by the Director of OI, the SAC will be notified of the decision in
writing by the Undercover Operations Unit.
F. A copy of all relevant documents will be retained in the SAC office’s
undercover operation’s permanent records.
G. A copy of the complete proposal and certification package will be retained in
the Undercover Operations Unit’s permanent records.
5.5.4(2.1) Review by the DHS URC: Department of Justice Non-Concurrence
If a DHS URC Department of Justice (DOJ) representative does not concur in the
recommendation for approval of a proposed operation based on legal or prosecutorial
considerations, the following procedures apply:
A. The Chairperson of the DHS URC shall promptly notify the Director of OI.
B. The DOJ representative shall promptly advise the Assistant Attorney General
for the Criminal Division.

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C. Within 2 business days, the DOJ representative to the DHS URC will provide
written notice to the DHS URC Chairperson regarding the nature and specific
reason for the non-concurrence.
D. No further action shall be taken on the proposal (except as required to ensure
compliance with any statutory requirements and/or to preserve investigative
accomplishments as they relate to the reauthorization of an ongoing operation)
until the Director of OI consults with the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal
Division.
E. If the Director of OI and the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division,
cannot resolve outstanding issues, the undercover operation must be
authorized and certified by the Assistant Secretary of ICE, in consultation
with DHS management, as appropriate.
5.5.5

Title 21 Operations – Memorandum of Understanding with DEA

Undercover operations that fall under the provisions (Title 21 of the United States Code)
of the current Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the former USCS and
DEA require additional considerations when determining the necessary steps for
approval. The Homeland Security Act of 2002 transferred USCS’ responsibilities within
the MOU to ICE through 6 U.S.C. § 552. ICE OI SACs will consult with their
appropriate DEA counterparts to initiate the necessary procedures required by the MOU.
It is highly recommended that ICE OI SACs establish local procedures with their DEA
counterparts for the coordination of these provisions.
When the proposal falls under the above-mentioned MOU, the following procedures
apply:
APPLICATIONS
A. Prior to submission to the scrub meeting, the new undercover proposal
(application for undercover operation) will be forwarded to the Unit Chief,
Contraband Smuggling Unit, and will undergo an initial review. DEA should
not be provided a copy at this time.
B. When this initial review is completed, the SAC will be notified by the Unit
Chief, Contraband Smuggling Unit, that the proposal (excluding budget and
source information) may be submitted to the local DEA SAC for concurrence.
APPLICATIONS and REAUTHORIZATIONS
C. The ICE OI SAC will send a copy of the sections of the proposal (excluding
budget and source information) related to Title 21 investigations to the local
DEA SAC, requesting written concurrence with the Title 21 aspects of the

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operation. (Note: In the case of multi-programmatic operations, only the
relevant Title 21 portions of the proposal should be sent to the DEA SAC.)
D. The local DEA SAC will review the proposal.
1) In case of concurrence, the DEA SAC will transmit a concurrence letter to
the ICE SAC.
2) In case of non-concurrence, see Section 5.5.5(1), “Title 21 Operations –
DEA Non-Concurrence”.
E. The OI SAC will forward the DEA concurrence letter, if received, to the
Undercover Operations Unit.
F. Prior to the URC meeting, the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, will
provide a copy of the proposal (excluding budget and source information) and
the DEA SAC concurrence letter to the appropriate DEA Headquarters Unit.
The DEA Headquarters Unit will provide comments concerning the sections
of the proposal relating to Title 21 to the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations
Unit, or to the URC, as applicable.
G. Depending on the degree of sensitive circumstances involved, one of two
procedures will be employed:
1) review by the ICE URC, including a DEA representative, as described in
Section 5.5.4(1), “Review by the ICE URC”; or
2) review by the DHS URC, including a DEA representative, as described in
Section 5.5.4(2), “Review by the DHS URC”.
5.5.5(1) Title 21 Operations – DEA Non-Concurrence
If the DEA Headquarters representative to the ICE or DHS URC does not concur with the
recommendation for approval of a proposed operation for any reason (including nonconcurrence by the local DEA SAC), the following will occur:
A. The Chairperson of the URC shall promptly notify the Director of OI.
B. The DEA Headquarters representative to the URC shall promptly notify the
Director of Operations, DEA.
C. Within 2 business days, the DEA representative will provide written notice to
the URC Chairperson regarding the nature and specific reasons for the nonconcurrence.

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D. No further action shall be taken on the Title 21 aspects of the proposal (except
as required to ensure compliance with any statutory requirements and/or to
preserve investigative accomplishments as they relate to the reauthorization of
an ongoing operation) until the Director of OI consults with the Director of
Operations, DEA.
E. If the Director of OI and the Director of Operations, DEA, cannot resolve the
outstanding issues, the undercover operation must be authorized and certified
by the Assistant Secretary of ICE, in consultation with DHS Management, as
appropriate.
Note: These DEA non-concurrence procedures may be superseded by procedures agreed
to by the ICE Director of OI and the DEA Director of Operations.
5.6

Records of the URC to Be Maintained by the Undercover Operations Unit

The Undercover Operations Unit shall retain a record of:
A. all proposals for approval of undercover operations submitted to the URC;
B. a written record of the URC’s action regarding the application/reauthorization
requests; and
C. a record of the certifications or other disposition by the approving official.
5.7

Exigent Approval

These procedures apply to the approval of undercover activities and operations under
exigent circumstances (defined in the Glossary of this Handbook). Failure to submit a
timely proposal for the recertification of an ongoing undercover operation does not
constitute exigent circumstances. The procedures detailed below generally require a 2business day turnaround in Headquarters after receipt of the request by the Undercover
Operations Unit.
Proposals that involve exigent circumstances pertaining to the MOU with DEA require
additional steps set forth in Section 5.7.2, “Exigent Approval – Procedures – Activities
Involving the DEA MOU.”
5.7.1

Exigent Approval – Procedures
A. The SAC will submit a memorandum to the Director of OI through the Unit
Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, requesting exigent approval and/or
certification.
B. The memorandum shall detail the circumstances warranting exigent approval,
but need only include enough information regarding past activity and potential

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to satisfy the need for exigent approval. A more detailed final proposal shall
be submitted through the URC for certification and will determine the full
scope of any long-term undercover operation.
C. The memorandum shall contain contact information (name, phone number,
email) of the Assistant U.S. Attorney (AUSA) who has verbally concurred
with the exigent approval.
D. The Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, will provide a copy of the
memorandum to the appropriate Headquarters managers and ICE
Headquarters Counsel and request immediate review and comments, as
appropriate.
E. An immediate initial review will be conducted and the appropriate documents
will be prepared for consideration for exigent approval by the Director of OI.
F. After considering the recommendation of the DAD, ISD, and any other
appropriate AD and/or DAD, the Director of OI will make a final
determination as to whether or not an exigent approval is warranted. If
approved, the Director of OI will authorize the operation in writing, on an
interim basis, not to exceed 30 days. An exigent reauthorization of an existing
operation will expire 30 days from the original expiration date of the
operation.
G. The authority to conduct investigations with sensitive circumstances granted
under these provisions must be reviewed by the ICE or DHS URC, as
applicable, at the earliest reasonable time.
5.7.2

Exigent Approval – Procedures – Activities Involving the DEA MOU

In addition to the above requirements for exigent approval, the following will apply when
Title 21 activities are involved. (See Section 5.5.5, “Title 21 Operations – Memorandum
of Understanding with DEA,” for more information on requirements in Title 21
operations.)
In undercover operations requiring exigent approval that include Title 21 investigative
issues, the following additional requirements will apply:
A. The ICE OI SAC will contact the local DEA SAC and relay all pertinent
information regarding the undercover activity and exigent circumstances.
B. The DEA SAC will advise the ICE OI SAC of any objections to the proposed
undercover operation in a timely manner.

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C. The memorandum requesting exigent approval will include information
regarding the communication with, and the concurrence (as applicable) of, the
local DEA SAC.
If an operation is initiated under the above-mentioned requirements (in Subsections A-C),
a written proposal in the standard format must be provided within 48 hours to the DEA
SAC and the OI Unit Chief, Contraband Smuggling Unit.
5.8

Emergency Approval

The SAC may approve undercover activities or operations involving sensitive
circumstances when emergency circumstances (defined in the Glossary of this
Handbook) exist. Emergency approval may be granted for a limited period, not to exceed
48 hours, only when the SAC has determined that, without immediate initiation,
extension, or renewal of an operation:
A. life and/or the personal safety of an individual would be placed in jeopardy;
B. danger that the security of the operation would be irreversibly damaged;
C. high value property would be placed in serious jeopardy; or
D. other potential emergency circumstances (defined in the Glossary of this
Handbook) exist.
Under these circumstances, the SAC shall make all reasonable attempts to consult with
the Director of OI for verbal emergency authorization. However, if attempts to contact
the Director of OI are unsuccessful or consultation would be impractical based on time
constraints, the SAC may authorize the required activities.
These provisions do not provide the SAC with the authority to:
A. approve or extend the certification requirement for the use of statutory
exemptions under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and/or 8 U.S.C. § 1363a;
B. approve activities which may require additional review and/or approval under
the provisions of the MOU with DEA; or
C. delegate the authority to approve sensitive undercover activities under
emergency circumstances.
Emergency authorizations of sensitive undercover activities or operations differ from
approvals under exigent circumstances in that emergency authorizations are granted
before documentation is submitted to Headquarters. If an operation is initiated or
extended under these emergency guidelines, the following will apply:

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A. A written memorandum to the Director of OI in the standard format must be
provided through the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, within 48
hours.
B. The memorandum must include the following information:
1) the initial findings and description of the emergency situation;
2) an account of the steps taken to contact the Director of OI or an account of
the circumstances that made this impractical;
3) a description of the activities that resulted from the emergency
authorization; and
4) a request for continued authorization, if required. (See Section 5.7,
“Exigent Approval.”)
If an emergency authorization requires a review by the ICE or the DHS URC, as
described in Section 5.5, “Certified Undercover Operation Application and
Reauthorization Procedures,” the SAC will prepare and submit a proposal in the standard
format for presentation to the next available URC.
If the proposal for approval of an operation that was initiated or extended under these
provisions is later denied during the review process, a full report of all activity
undertaken during the course of the operation must be submitted to the Director of OI
within 5 business days. If such a denied operation required review by the DHS or ICE
URC as described in Section 5.5.4, “Review and Final Approval,” the Director of OI will
promptly inform the Assistant Secretary of ICE, as applicable.
5.9

Program Code Assignment/Case Tracking

When a new certified undercover operation has received final approval/certification, a
program code from TECS Case Management will be assigned through the TECS System
Manager in the Executive Information Unit (EIU), MSD. This code transmits the
authorization and the certification of the operation to operational investigations.
Additionally, the code identifies all related case activities and enables the retrieval of all
case reports and statistics. It is the responsibility of the operation’s CUC
Lead/Administrative GS to ensure that a program code is obtained from the TECS
System Manager. It is the responsibility of operational personnel to ensure the proper use
of the program code when required (e.g., Case Management, ROIs, Incident Reports,
Purchase of Information (POI)/Purchase of Evidence (POE), etc.).
The following procedures apply after initial certification:
A. Operational personnel will request the TECS program code from EIU, MSD.

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B. Operational personnel shall provide a copy of the operation’s certification
signed by the Director of OI, to EIU, MSD.
C. The EIU, MSD, will ensure that a TECS program code is created with the
following description format:
CUC OPERATION [NAME].
5.10

Duration of Authorization

Except pursuant to extension under exigent or emergency circumstances as described in
Section 5.7, “Exigent Approval” and Section 5.8, “Emergency Approval,” no undercover
operation may continue longer than is necessary to achieve the objectives of the
operation, nor in any event longer than 6 months, without reauthorization.
5.11

Unforeseen Circumstances

If, during the course of the 6-month authorization period, there is significant change in
either the direction or objectives of an undercover operation, the SAC will submit an
amended proposal for review by the URC and action by the Director of OI.
5.11.1 Unforeseen Circumstances: Operational Enhancements
When unforeseen operational opportunities arise that require a substantial deviation from
the approved operational activities (e.g., a financial currency pick-up operation that
wishes to open an undercover real estate company), the SAC shall promptly submit a
memorandum in the standard format to the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, for
review by the appropriate URC. This enhancement authorization may be granted under
exigent circumstances by complying with the requirements for exigent approval stated in
Section 5.7, “Exigent Approval,” or, in emergency circumstances, with the requirements
in Section 5.8, “Emergency Approval.”
5.11.2 Unforeseen Circumstances: Additional Sensitive Circumstances
When unforeseen sensitive circumstances arise in an ongoing undercover operation, the
SAC shall promptly submit a memorandum and a modified authorization, including a
request in the standard format for the authority to conduct investigations with the new
sensitive circumstances to the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, for review by the
URC. This additional sensitive circumstances authorization may be granted under
exigent circumstances by complying with the requirements for exigent approval stated in
Section 5.7, “Exigent Approval,” or, in emergency circumstances, with the requirements
in Section 5.8, “Emergency Approval.”

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5.11.3 Unforeseen Circumstances: Legal Issues
The SAC shall consult with the DAD, ISD, whenever a serious legal, ethical,
prosecutorial, or Departmental policy question arises in any undercover operation. The
DAD, ISD, shall consult with the members of the appropriate URC on whether to
recommend the modification, suspension, or termination of the operation to the Director
of OI.
5.12

Joint Undercover Operations

OI may take part in a joint undercover operation (defined in the Glossary of this
Handbook) with another law enforcement agency only when the other agency has
obtained its own agency certification and agrees to comply with applicable OI policies
and procedures. Approval of an undercover operation by a participating law enforcement
agency does not constitute approval for OI purposes.
When participating in joint undercover operations, managers should consider that the
statutory exemptions granted under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a can be
applied only to the detection and prosecution of offenses within the jurisdiction of the
Secretary of Homeland Security. Accordingly, joint undercover investigations that take
advantage of these statutory exemptions must have a reasonable likelihood of disclosing a
violation of laws enforced by ICE.
The approval process for joint undercover operations is the same as the approval process
for any other operation. As such, the SAC may approve a joint operation that does not
involve sensitive circumstances (defined in the Glossary of this Handbook) and does not
require certification. However, the URC must review, and the Director of OI must
certify, all undercover operations that require the use of ICE’s statutory exemptions
and/or that involve sensitive circumstances.
Proceeds can be shared only with other agencies if they have received the proper
certification to use proceeds to offset necessary and reasonable expenses (see Section
6.4.1, “Control of Proceeds”). Participation with ICE in a joint operation does not
constitute authority for other agencies to engage in activities where existing laws and
regulations would otherwise forbid such activities. Agencies participating in joint
operations with ICE are governed by their applicable laws, policies, and procedures.
During the course of a joint undercover operation, OI SAs must adhere to all applicable
OI policies and procedures. OI managers must be cognizant of sensitive circumstances
that arise during the course of an operation that involves an OI undercover operative,
whether initiated by OI or not, as these must be reviewed by the URC and approved by
the Director of OI.

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Chapter 6. ADMINISTRATIVE AND FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT OF
UNDERCOVER OPERATIONS
Due to the unique statutory authority granted in 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a,
certified undercover operations are able to use funds and engage in transactions outside
of usual governmental policies and procedures. This authorization requires that
personnel involved in a certified undercover operation ensure that all expenditures are
properly executed and documented. All personnel involved in a certified undercover
operation should be aware that accountability and control over these undercover
operations must be exercised in order to ensure the continued use of these statutory
exemptions, which are vital and powerful law enforcement tools.
The policy detailed below is intended to provide managers with a working concept of the
scope of the allowances provided by the statutory exemptions for undercover operations.
The policy will also serve to standardize record-keeping systems, enhance accountability,
and strengthen management controls.
6.1

Certification Authority

The provisions authorizing the use of the exemptions from certain laws, codified in 19
U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a, are qualified by a stipulation which requires written
certification that the use of an exemption is necessary for the conduct of a given
undercover operation. The authority to provide that certification does not rest in the field
and cannot be delegated below the level of the Director of OI. Within ICE, this authority
is delegated to the Assistant Secretary or designee, as permitted by statute, in DHS
Delegation 7030.2, and redelegated to the Director of OI in ICE Delegation Order 04002.
6.2

Expending Funds from Certified Undercover Operations

The exemptions contained in 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a allow for
procurement outside the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR). They also limit the use
of proceeds to necessary and reasonable expenses connected directly with a specific
approved/certified undercover operation. Accordingly, the use of proceeds or of
equipment, leased vehicles, cellular phones, and other property acquired with proceeds
must be limited to the needs of the operation that acquired them and may not be used for
general office purposes. Property acquired with proceeds and dedicated for use within
the operation can be legally transferred to another certified undercover operation (see
Section 14.3.2, “Property.” The transferred property must be liquidated at the conclusion
of the operation or transferred to another certified undercover operation. Any fees
associated with the transfer must be paid by the receiving operation.

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6.2.1 Expenditures Must Be Necessary and Reasonable for the Conduct of the
Operation
Under the statutory framework, OI officials have reasonably broad discretion in making
the determination of what are necessary and reasonable expenses. The following
definitions of “necessary and reasonable” shall be utilized.
“Necessary” is defined as those expenses that are directly related to the purposes and
objectives of the undercover investigative operation (e.g., an undercover cellular phone
for an undercover agent would be a necessary operational expense, whereas a cellular
phone for every SA in the SAC office would not be a necessary operational expense).
“Reasonable” is defined as those expenses which, given the circumstances of the
undercover operation, are logical, judicious, and justifiable (e.g., if an operation needs a
sedan for general surveillance and undercover security, leasing a $20,000 Toyota Camry
would be a reasonable expense, whereas, under these circumstances, leasing a $45,000
Porsche Boxster would not be a reasonable expense).
6.2.2

Expenditure Authorization (6-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan) for
Certified Undercover Operations

Every certified undercover operation will operate on a 6-month expenditure authorization
plan. This expenditure authorization plan will be part of the application/reauthorization
proposal and will be approved by the Director of OI as part of the certification of the
undercover operation.
The 6-month expenditure authorization plan will be included as part of the application/
reauthorization proposal. This 6-month expenditure authorization plan is reviewed by the
URC and approved by the Director of OI. During the 6-month authorization period,
operational personnel are prohibited from exceeding the spending limits set by the
expenditure authorization, except as detailed in Section 6.2.3, “Unforeseen Expenses that
Will Exceed the Limit of the 6-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan for Certified
Undercover Operations.”
The CUFFS Administrator is required to monitor expenditures in order to ensure that
they do not exceed the 6-month expenditure authorization plan. The operation’s
management personnel are responsible for ensuring compliance with the 6-month plan
limits.
Note: All problematic certified undercover operation expenditure issues should be
directed to the Undercover Operations Unit.

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6.2.3 Unforeseen Expenses that Will Exceed the Limit of the 6-Month Expenditure
Authorization Plan for Certified Undercover Operations
If it becomes apparent that there will be previously unforeseen expenses during the 6month expenditure authorization plan period, operational personnel can request an
increase as appropriate. The authorization levels are as follows:
A. Any expenditure 10 % ABOVE the authorization level requires further
approval.
1) Expenditures that will exceed any four digit object class code (OCC) by
10 % or more require the written approval of the SAC.
2) Expenditures that will exceed any two digit OCC (subtotal) by 10 % or
more (or more than $10,000) require the written approval of the DAD,
ISD.
3) Expenditures that will exceed the total 6-month expenditure authorization
plan by 10 % or more require the written approval of the Director of OI.
B. Expenditures less than 10 % above the authorization level require no
additional approval.
Note: Requests for increases to the 6-month expenditure authorization plan requiring the
written approval of the DAD, ISD, or the Director of OI will be routed though the
Undercover Operations Unit. (Agents should contact the Undercover Operations Unit
for the standardized memorandum format.)

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6.2.4

Expenditure Flow Chart
UNDERCOVER OPERATION EXPENDITURES
CUC-Appropriated
Funds
or
Proceeds *

Necessary
and
Reasonable

No

(See Section 6.2.1)

Expense
Prohibited

Yes

Nature of
transaction requires
covert expenditures
(See Section 6.2.5)

No

Transaction must be
in compliance with
FAR

Yes

Transaction Exempt
from FAR
*Other funding sources (i.e., SAC funds, High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA)
funds) require only that the funds be expended for the purpose for which the funds were
appropriated. All operational expenditures, regardless of the source of the funds, must be
recorded in CUFFS and be within the limits of the 6-month expenditure authorization
plan.

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6.2.5

Use of Funds and Business/Purchase Exemptions (Purchases Outside FAR)

19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a authorize the payment of any necessary and
reasonable expenses of a certified undercover operation from proceeds or appropriated
funds. However, only those expenditures that directly support the undercover operation’s
covertness can properly be made outside FAR under the statutes’ business/purchase
exemption (exemptions 1 and 2) (defined in the Glossary of this Handbook). Generally,
FAR must be used when purchasing equipment or services related to the operation (see
Section 6.19, “Operational Purchases”). However, acquisitions of equipment and
services may be made outside FAR when necessary to protect the safety, security,
covertness, secrecy, and integrity of the undercover operation.
Under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a, a proprietary undercover business
(defined in the Glossary of this Handbook) is authorized to operate on a commercial
basis, in order to engage in covert business transactions necessary for the detection and
prosecution of offenses against the United States, as well as for the safety and security of
the operation. A proprietary business can be established as a covert business entity for
the safety and security of an operation to do the business of the operation and/or conceal
the true identity of the operation from the public, the targets of the operation, and the
private sector.
Note: If a manager cannot articulate a legitimate need to conceal the involvement of the
Government in a particular transaction necessary for the operation, then the transaction
must be made in compliance with FAR.
6.3

Use of CUC-Appropriated Funds

CUC-appropriated funds (defined in the Glossary of this Handbook) designated for a
certified undercover operation may be used for any necessary and reasonable expense
(defined in Section 6.2.1, “Expenditures Must Be Necessary and Reasonable to the
Conduct of the Operation”) for the conduct of the operation. These funds may not be
used for general SAC office expenses. CUC-appropriated funds may be used for any
expense that can be paid with proceeds, except as otherwise stated in this Handbook.
6.4

Use of Proceeds

When an undercover operation has been certified to expend proceeds, that operation’s
proceeds may be used for any necessary and reasonable expense for the conduct of the
operation, except as otherwise stated in this Handbook.
6.4.1

Control of Proceeds

The use of proceeds is limited to offsetting necessary and reasonable expenses of the
specific certified undercover operation that generated them. Proceeds may be used only
by the operation that generated them and may not be transferred to, or used by, other

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operations, or used for general office purposes outside the operation, except in the
following circumstances:
6.4.1(1) Reimbursement of Supporting Operations (within OI)
To the extent that one operation may incur expenses in direct support of another
operation, the operation receiving the support may reimburse the assisting operation with
proceeds, provided that:
A. both operations have the proper certifications;
B. the amount of reimbursement does not exceed the actual expenses incurred;
C. no reimbursement is made based on an estimated rate for services performed;
D. both operations retain copies of receipts documenting the expense; and
E. both operations reflect all transactions and the transfer of funds in CUFFS.
6.4.1(2) Reimbursement of Other Participating Agencies
In a properly certified undercover operation, proceeds may be used to pay and/or
reimburse necessary and reasonable expenses, regardless of which participating agency
incurred the expenses, provided that the expenses were:
A. for the investigation of violations of law within the investigative jurisdiction
of ICE; and
B. incurred in furtherance of the OI undercover operation’s mission.
When paying for travel or small incidental expenses incurred by personnel from other
agencies who are assigned to work in an ICE certified undercover operation, a normal
advance or reimbursement should be made and properly documented in CUFFS.
If another federal agency is to receive proceeds obtained in an ICE certified undercover
operation to offset expenses, consideration should be given to this other federal agency’s
authority to offset expenditures from its appropriation. If the agency does not have this
authority, it may be required to deposit the reimbursement in the U.S. Treasury. A
reimbursable agreement, pursuant to 31 U.S.C. § 1535, wherein ICE agrees to pay the
agency for services performed on ICE’s behalf, could be used to remedy this. Such an
agreement is subject to the following limitations:
A. The certified undercover operation will reimburse only expenses that were
incurred in furtherance of the undercover operation and the ICE mission.
B. Expenses subject to reimbursement will be delineated in the agreement.
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C. Reimbursement amounts are limited to funds that the operation has available
from proceeds, not CUC-appropriated funds.
Managers are encouraged to coordinate the establishment of reimbursement agreements
with ICE Counsel prior to reimbursing other agencies.
6.4.1(3) Splitting Proceeds with Another OI Certified Undercover Operation
When splitting proceeds with other OI certified undercover operations, a sharing
agreement (approved by the appropriate SAC(s)) will be drawn up in advance detailing
the amount or percentage of proceeds each operation expects to receive. This method
should be used only when a joint investigation exists and each operation has contributed
to such a degree toward an expected delivery of proceeds that it would be inappropriate
for one operation to claim the whole amount. Under this method, the proceeds retained
by each operation are not to be considered as having been generated by the other
operation.
Ideally, the procedure for splitting proceeds is to divide the amount received between the
operations immediately after their receipt (or as soon thereafter as possible) and before
the money is recorded by the operation in CUFFS. (This procedure will avoid any audittrail confusion associated with paying out a lump sum to another operation.)
In cases where the proceeds are received directly into an operation’s undercover bank
account, a CUFFS entry for the entire amount is required. The amount representing the
agreed split will immediately be given to the other operation and a CUFFS entry
documenting the transaction will be made. A detailed note will be placed in the CUFFS
entry, documenting the reason for the transaction.
Each operation will then record its respective share of the proceeds. This includes
recording the proceeds in CUFFS. A copy of the sharing agreement, a SAC
memorandum authorizing the specific instance of sharing and documenting the rationale,
and a copy of an ROI detailing the total amounts received and subsequently split will be
placed in each of the operation’s financial records.
6.4.1(4) Splitting Proceeds with Other Participating Agencies
When splitting proceeds with other agencies, a written Memorandum of Agreement
(MOA) between ICE and the other agency office head should be drawn up in advance
detailing the amount or percentage of proceeds each agency expects to receive. In
accordance with OI Delegation Order 06-003, entitled, “Authority to Sign Memoranda of
Understanding and Memoranda of Agreement Within the Office of Investigations,” the
authority to sign Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) and MOAs is delegated by the
Director of OI to the OI ADs, DADs, and SACs, provided that the MOUs or MOAs are
first reviewed and concurred in writing by ICE Counsel, the Director of OI, and the
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Operations. Such MOAs can be entered into only with
agencies that have independent authority to take in proceeds. This method should be
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used only when a joint operation exists and each agency has contributed to such a degree
toward an expected delivery of proceeds that it would be inappropriate for one agency to
claim the whole amount and attempt to reimburse the other. Under this method, any
proceeds that have been retained by another agency are not to be considered as having
been generated by OI.
Ideally, the procedure for splitting proceeds is to divide the amount received between
agencies as close to their receipt as possible and before the money is recorded by the
operation in CUFFS. (This procedure will avoid any audit trail confusion associated with
paying out a lump sum to another agency.)
In cases where the proceeds are received directly into an ICE undercover bank account, a
CUFFS entry for the entire amount is required. The amount representing the agreed split
will immediately be given to the other agency and a CUFFS entry will be made to
document the transaction. A detailed note will be placed in the CUFFS entry
documenting the reason for the transaction.
Each agency will then record its respective share in accordance with its own policies and
procedures for handling proceeds. For ICE, this includes recording ICE’s share in
CUFFS. A copy of the MOA between ICE and the other agency, the SAC memorandum
authorizing the specific instance of sharing and documenting the rationale, as well as a
copy of the ROI detailing the total amounts received and subsequently split, are to be
placed in the operation’s financial files.
6.4.1(5) Splitting Proceeds with Foreign Law Enforcement Agencies
In cases involving the splitting of proceeds with a foreign law enforcement agency, the
prior written approval of the Director of the Office of International Affairs (OIA) and the
prior written concurrence of ICE Counsel must be obtained. All other requirements for
splitting proceeds remain the same.
6.4.2

Purchase of Information Using Proceeds

Like any other necessary expense in support of a certified undercover operation, POI
expenses may be paid with proceeds, provided that:
A. the approval process outlined in the current OI policy regarding informants is
followed;
B. the information obtained and the resulting enforcement activities are in direct
support of the certified undercover operation which generated the proceeds;
C. the transaction is documented on an Expense/Advance Approval Form
(Appendix B) and properly posted in CUFFS; and

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D. the Confidential Source Payment and Benefit Transaction Receipt (ICE Form
73-293)
1) is authorized, processed, and filed in accordance with OI policy;
2) includes the TECS Case Management program code for the operation
making the payment;
3) is annotated “Paid With Proceeds”; and
4) the copy that is normally sent to the Dallas Finance Center is included in
the operation’s financial records.
6.4.3

Purchase of Evidence Using Proceeds

Proceeds may be used to purchase evidence that is necessary for the support of a certified
undercover operation, provided that:
A. the approval process outlined in the current OI policy regarding POE is
utilized;
B. the evidence purchased is in direct support of the certified undercover
operation which generated the proceeds;
C. the transaction is documented on an EAF (Appendix B) and properly posted in
CUFFS; and
D. ICE Form 73-293
1) is authorized, processed, and filed in accordance with OI policy;
2) includes the TECS Case Management program code for the operation
making the payment;
3) is annotated “Paid With Proceeds”; and
4) the copy that is normally sent to the Dallas Finance Center is included in
the operation’s financial records.
6.4.4 Payment of Overtime Using Proceeds
Proceeds may be used to offset overtime costs for DHS employees only that are directly
attributable to an undercover operation with the proper certification. To ensure that
appropriate deductions for taxes, withholding, retirement considerations, etc., are applied,
these payments must be processed through the Dallas Finance Center. The following
procedures will apply:
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A. The use of proceeds to pay overtime must be approved by the Director of OI
as part of the certification/authorization process or in a memorandum
requesting the enhancement of the operation and the operation’s expenditure
authorization plan.
B. The SAC must approve, in writing, the use of proceeds to offset specific
overtime costs.
C. Overtime payments will be paid from SAC funds.
D. When the expense is posted to the SAC’s budget plan, the operation will
arrange its reimbursement via appropriate means to the Dallas Finance Center,
accompanied by a memorandum identifying the account to be credited.
E. The expense will be posted in CUFFS.
If another agency has incurred overtime costs in a joint undercover operation with ICE,
operational personnel may use the procedures outlined in Section 6.4.1(2),
“Reimbursement of Other Participating Agencies.” Additionally, ICE has the authority
under 19 U.S.C. § 1616(a) to share assets after forfeiture.
6.4.5

Payment of Travel Expenses Associated with Field Reviews of Undercover
Operations Using Proceeds

Undercover operations that continue longer than 1 year require a field review by the
Undercover Operations Unit. These undercover operation reviews, under the supervision
of the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, are undertaken to determine whether the
operation is adhering to DHS and ICE operational policy and guidelines. Therefore, the
use of the operation’s proceeds to offset review expenses by the Undercover Field
Review Team is necessary to the conduct of such operation in part because such
procedures or reviews are required under DHS and ICE policy.
When proceeds of certified undercover operations are sufficient and available, they may
be utilized to pay for the travel and related expenses of the Undercover Field Review
Team. The following procedure will be utilized when undercover proceeds are to be used
to pay for the travel and expenses of the Undercover Field Review Team:
A. The field review team leader will complete a manual travel authorization for
each member of the Undercover Field Review Team, using the standard
manual travel authorization process, and forward the same to the operation’s
SAC office for approval.
B. Following the field review, a manual travel voucher will be completed by
each member of the Undercover Field Review Team and forwarded to the
SAC.

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C. The SAC will review the manual travel voucher of each member of the
Undercover Field Review Team and authorize payment.
D. The travel of each Undercover Field Review Team member shall be paid from
the operation’s overt bank account or by cashier/bank check. The use of the
overt bank account or bank check will avoid any potential compromise of the
undercover operation.
6.5

Regulating the Amount of Proceeds Held by an Operation

19 U.S.C. § 2081(c) and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a(b) require that, upon completion of a certified
undercover operation, the proprietary business must be liquidated, sold, or otherwise
disposed of (see Section 14.3, “Liquidation of Assets”). Following satisfaction of all
obligations, the proceeds are to be deposited in the U.S. Treasury as miscellaneous
receipts, unless an independent basis for forfeiture exists. If an independent basis for
forfeiture exists, the forfeited funds should subsequently be deposited into the appropriate
forfeiture fund. The following rules apply to proceeds held by an undercover operation:
6.5.1

Limit on Amount of Proceeds Held

In order to ensure the safety of the government funds and to promote uniformity across
ICE, no certified undercover operation will hold in excess of $500,000, except for the
following:
A. Upon the recommendation for approval by the URC and subsequent approval
by the Director of OI, through the process of Application or Reauthorization
for Certification, the operation may retain up to $750,000 in proceeds. The
Application or Reauthorization for Certification proposal must contain a
detailed accounting of the compelling need for retaining funds above the
$500,000 limit.
B. Upon a specific written request from the SAC, the Director of OI may
authorize approval for an operation to retain in excess of $750,000 in
proceeds. The written request must contain the identifying data for the
operation, the amount requested to be retained in excess of $750,000, and a
detailed accounting of the compelling need for retaining funds at the higher
level.
The above limits may be periodically reviewed and modified by the Director of OI in
order to meet the needs of ICE.
6.5.2

SAC Review of Proceeds Held

In addition to approving the Monthly Financial Review Worksheet (see Section 7.1,
“SAC Monthly Reports (Financial)”), each SAC is required to periodically review each
undercover operation to determine:
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A. the amount of proceeds available in the operation; and
B. the reasonable amount of proceeds necessary for continuance of that particular
operation (as this amount may be substantially lower than the $500,000 limit).
6.5.3

Seizure of Proceeds from Ongoing Operations
A. Should the review determine that excess proceeds have been accumulated, the
SAC should direct the seizure of the excess funds and have them transmitted
to the appropriate forfeiture officer (currently CBP Fines, Penalties and
Forfeitures (FP&F)) for the initiation of forfeiture proceedings in cases where
forfeiture proceedings would pose no risk of exposing the undercover
operation. This requires OI to establish the elements of the offense which
provide the basis for forfeiture of the property or proceeds. Statutes that
provide for forfeiture of traceable proceeds include 18 U.S.C. § 981, 31
U.S.C. § 5317, and 21 U.S.C. § 881.
The law does not require notice to an individual if the individual who
provided the proceeds no longer has a legal interest in the proceeds. For
example, if an individual paid proceeds to undercover agents in return for a
service, albeit illegal, performed by ICE as part of the undercover operation,
the person would no longer have a legal interest in the proceeds.
1) This situation is distinguished from one where the individual retained an
interest in the proceeds (i.e., an investment in illegal undercover business
or activity). In such a case, notice of the forfeiture must be provided to the
individual. Accordingly, each SAC shall determine whether persons may
have a legal interest in the property or proceeds to be forfeited.
2) While no notice to the individual may be required, statutory forfeiture
provisions require satisfaction of certain procedural elements, including
publication in a newspaper of general circulation for 3 consecutive weeks,
pursuant to 19 U.S.C. § 1607.
B. Prior to the submission of the Incident Report (formerly known as the
Search/Arrest/Seizure Report) to the FP&F Officer, the seizing officer must
ensure that the probable cause basis and/or circumstances regarding the
seizure and forfeiture of the money or property is articulated in the
“Circumstances/ Remarks” portion of the Incident Report. In addition, the
Incident Report must have all the appropriate project codes listed in the
“Summary Data Section.”
C. Any forfeiture proceeding may result in a claim. Therefore, prior to initiating
a forfeiture proceeding related to an ongoing undercover operation,
management must be cognizant of any potential operational exposure if the
forfeiture is contested.

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See also Section 14.3.1, “Monetary Assets (Proceeds and CUC-Appropriated
Funds).”
6.5.4

Deposit of Proceeds into the U.S. Treasury

If it is determined that proceeds are to be deposited into the U.S. Treasury as
miscellaneous receipts, a check (from the overt account) and a memorandum requesting
this action should be sent to:
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Dallas Finance Center
P.O. Box 561587
Dallas, TX 75356-1587
Attention: U.S. Treasury Accounts Team
6.6

Petty Cash Fund

Undercover operations may have a need to maintain a petty cash fund to cover incidental
operational expenses. The establishment of a fund is at the discretion of the SAC. If a
petty cash fund is created, it shall be maintained in accordance with DHS Imprest Fund
guidelines. (See the DHS Imprest Fund Manual of Procedures and Instructions for
Cashiers (Cashiers Manual), Office of Financial Management, Cash Management
Section, February 2003, or as updated.)
The principal reason for the petty cash fund is to support covert transactions that are
covered by the business/purchase exemption allowing purchases outside FAR. The
exemption enables the undercover operation to make purchases without revealing the
involvement of the U.S. Government and without regard to many normal Government
restrictions on purchases.
If expenditures are not covered by the business/purchase exemption, cash from the petty
cash fund may be used to make FAR purchases. If a FAR purchase exceeds $2,500 limit
(for services) or $3,000 (for supplies), the currently required standard government
procurement form and the procedures in Section 6.19, “Operational Purchases,” must be
used.
6.7

Cash Advances

Advances from operational funds may be issued to ensure that employees are not
required to expend personal funds for operational transactions. The following guidelines
will apply:
A. Advances will be issued for a specific purpose using a CUFFS
Expense/Advance Approval Form (Appendix B) approved by a properly
authorized manager (or higher-level manager).

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B. The CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form indicating the outstanding
advance will be retained by the CUFFS Administrator or petty cash fund
cashier as an interim receipt.
C. The individual receiving the advance will present original receipts and any
remaining funds to the CUFFS Administrator or petty cash fund cashier for
liquidation of the advance.
D. The CUFFS Administrator or petty cash fund cashier will attach the receipts
to the CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form and complete the section
documenting the liquidation of the advance.
E. The original CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form with the receipts will
be retained in the financial records of the operation and a copy of the CUFFS
Expense/Advance Approval Form (indicating the liquidation of the advance)
will be provided to the individual who had the advance.
Generally, advances will be made for a specific purpose and will be liquidated or
returned within 5 working days. Responsibility for the repayment of advances is not
transferable to another individual, nor can the advance be used for purposes other than
those authorized on the CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form.
Generally, an individual may hold only one outstanding advance at a time. However,
under extraordinary circumstances, multiple advances may be approved as long as the
CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form clearly indicates the number and total amount
of outstanding advances held by that individual.
6.7.1

SAC-Approved 30-Day Cash Advances

When operational needs require providing contingency funds to individuals engaged in
undercover activities, the SAC may authorize advances for up to 30 days. This approval
will be noted on the CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form and contain the SAC’s
signature. Such 30-day advances shall be liquidated or returned within 30 days. If the
funds are required for more than 30 days, the old advance shall be liquidated and a new
advance, with the required SAC’s approval, will be executed.
6.7.2

Advances to Confidential Informants

Any monetary advance given to a CI must be documented utilizing a CUFFS
Expense/Advance Approval Form. Additionally, an ICE Form 73-293 will be completed
and signed by the CI, in his or her assumed name, and witnessed by two SAs or one SA
and another law enforcement officer. ICE Form 73-293 will document the receipt of the
funds by the CI.

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Prior to making an advance to a CI, careful consideration should be given to the
requirements for the advance. Other factors, such as possible alternatives and the CI’s
reliability, should also be taken into account.
6.8

Transactions Involving Confidential Informants

The relationship between a CI and OI can involve financial transactions that are difficult
to properly classify, record, and document. Due to unusual circumstances in undercover
scenarios, it is sometimes difficult to determine whether a transaction represents
compensation to a CI (which would be characterized as POI or stipends and/or
commissions, defined in the Glossary of this Handbook) or a direct expense of the
operation. Undercover scenarios can also make it difficult to obtain proper
documentation of expenditures. This Section provides guidance to ensure that
transactions involving CIs are accurately recorded in CUFFS and properly documented.
In order to ensure uniform documentation and avoid uncertainty related to payment of
funds to CIs, ICE Form 73-293 shall be utilized to document all financial and benefits
transactions between OI and a CI. One of the purposes of ICE Form 73-293 is to ensure
proper documentation of a payment to a confidential source. Full documentation protects
the agency and the personnel involved in the transactions from allegations of improper
activity.
In certified undercover operations, transactions involving CIs will generally fall into one
of four areas: stipends and/or commissions, POI, POE, and operational expenses incurred
by a CI.
6.8.1

Transactions Involving CIs – Payment of Stipends and/or Commissions

In order to initiate long-term investigations, ICE must identify, cultivate, and retain
assistance from CIs who are intimately involved with targeted criminal organizations.
The credibility, potential, and services provided to the undercover operation by these CIs,
as well as the positions, roles, and relationships they establish, are directly related to the
stipends and/or commissions they receive. Based on these and other factors, stipends
and/or commissions are considered necessary and reasonable expenses for the conduct of
undercover operations.
Compensation paid to a CI in the form of stipends and/or commissions are generally
negotiated in advance and are memorialized in a PAA signed by the CI and the SAC, and
ultimately approved by the Unit Chief, ISU. These stipends and/or commissions are
often recurring and amount to significant payments over the duration of the undercover
operation.
Stipends and/or commissions paid to a CI are not based on enforcement results such as
POI, but are specific to services rendered by the CI.

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Note: POI, which is separate from stipends and commissions, is defined as a payment by
the U.S. Government to an informant for information or services that have already been
provided to the Government in connection with an investigation. The amount of POI
paid to a source of information is based on the value of the information provided to the
Government.
6.8.2

Transactions Involving CIs – Approval of Stipend and/or Commission
Payments

In order to pay stipends and/or commissions to a CI, the amounts must be approved in the
following manner:
A. Any stipend and/or commission to be paid to the CI must be stated in a PAA
signed by the CI and the SAC, reviewed by ICE Counsel, and approved by the
Unit Chief, ISU; and
B. If payments will be made by EFTs into a CI’s account, the account must be
fully identified in the PAA (all such accounts included in a PAA will be vetted
by the operational personnel through TECS Case Management prior to the
approval of the PAA); and
C. The original proposal for certification of an undercover operation and any
reauthorizations require the following:
1) a separate line item (points/commissions) in the 6-month expenditure
authorization plan for anticipated commission expenditures for each 6month certification period;
2) a review through the URC process; and
3) final approval by the Director of OI.
6.8.3

Transactions Involving CIs – Methods for Paying Stipends and/or
Commissions

One of the following two methods must be used in order to pay stipends and/or
commissions to a CI:
A. When stipends and/or commissions are paid to a CI in person using cash or a
check, the transfer must be documented on ICE Form 73-293 by checking the
“Money Laundering/Points” box and must be witnessed by two law
enforcement officers; or

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B. When a CI is unavailable for a person-to-person meeting, he or she may
receive a stipend and/or commission payment via an EFT to a previously
designated account. The account used for the payment must be included in
the CI’s approved PAA. All such accounts included in the PAA will be vetted
by the operational personnel through TECS Case Management prior to
approval of the PAA.
All stipends and/or commission payments must be documented via an ICE Form 73-293
for accounting purposes. A copy of the completed ICE Form 73-293 (minus the source
signature in case of wire transfers) will be forwarded to the ISU, ISD, with a copy of the
wire confirmation attached (as applicable).
Note: This Handbook does not supersede any requirements of ICE policy related to
meeting with, and debriefing, sources of information, as well as source file requirements.
The requirements and policies related to sources of information/CIs are within the
purview of the ISU, ISD.
6.8.4

Transactions Involving CIs – Tracking and Documentation of Stipends
and/or Commissions

The following steps must be taken in order to track and document the payment of
stipends and/or commissions to a CI:
A. Each operation will maintain documentation of the payments through the use
of ICE Form 73-293, CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form, EFT
paperwork and bank statements, and CI payment logs.
B. A list of the payments will be maintained in the CI files.
C. Each payment is to be recorded in the undercover operation’s CUFFS under
Money Laundering Points (OCC 91.14).
6.8.5

Transactions Involving CIs – POI

POI payments are expenses of an operation paid to a CI and are:
A. payments made by the U.S. Government; and
B. payments that directly benefit the CI.
Such payments are based on information received and/or services performed on the U.S.
Government’s behalf and the enforcement results achieved due to the information and/or
service.

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All payments to CIs for POI must be supported by a properly executed ICE Form 73-293
and in compliance with the approval levels and procedures established by ICE. ICE
Forms 73-293 for POI related to an undercover operation must include the TECS
program code and be posted to CUFFS. A copy of ICE Form 73-293 will become part of
the financial records of the operation.
Note: Information and/or services resulting in a POI payment should be documented in
an ROI.
6.8.6

Transactions Involving CIs – Operational Expenses Incurred by a CI

Generally, expenditures related to activities of a CI will be considered expenses of an
operation when they are:
A. necessary and reasonable for the conduct of the operation;
B. primarily for the conduct of the U.S. Government’s mission (providing only
incidental benefit to the CI); and
C. incurred by the CI in direct support of the undercover operation.
Operational expense reimbursement is not income for a CI but must be documented on an
ICE Form 73-293. It shall be approved and documented as any other operational expense
and pursuant to Section 6.18, “Approval of Expenditures.”
Only to the extent that expenditures are necessary and reasonable for the conduct of the
operation are they properly classified as operational expenses. At times, expenditures
might facilitate the operation yet provide a significant benefit to the CI that is incidental
to the needs of the U.S. Government. Such expenses will be considered POI and
documented accordingly. For example, if a CI’s boat required the permanent installation
of a global positioning system (GPS) for an operation, the cost of the system could be
considered POI and would, therefore, count towards the threshold levels for the CI.
Otherwise, the GPS would be Government property and would have to be removed and
retained by the Government at the conclusion of the operational need.
Note: For detailed instruction related to CI travel expenses, SAs should see Section
6.22.3, “Travel by Confidential Informants.”
Note: Advances can be made to CIs to cover anticipated expenses. The advances are
subject to the same policies and procedures for advances found in Section 6.7, Cash
Advances.

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6.8.7

Transactions Involving CIs – Payments to Third-Parties for Illegal Services
and/or POE

Payments made by CIs to third parties for illegal services and/or involving POE can make
it difficult to properly account for the expenditure. Payments of illegal brokerage fees,
commissions, and bribes are not likely to generate proper documentation. In this
situation, an ROI will document the details of the transaction. Every effort should be
made to arrange for an OI agent to be an eyewitness to the transaction between the CI and
the third party. If possible, an undercover operative should be introduced to the third
party to execute the transaction.
If circumstances preclude the involvement of an undercover operative in the transaction,
every effort will be made to electronically record (by audio and video means) the
transaction. POE funds given to the CI will be documented on an ICE Form 73-293 and
on a CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form (Appendix B). This documentation will:
A. be reviewed and approved by the SAC (This does not supersede the
requirement for POE approval at the appropriate level.);
B. list the specific purpose for the expenditure;
C. name the individual(s) to whom the CI will make the payment;
D. reflect the date the money is turned over to the CI;
E. contain the signature of the CI to acknowledge receipt of the money;
F. be witnessed by an OI SA and another law enforcement officer; and
G. remain a part of the operation’s financial records.
6.8.7(1) Transactions Involving CIs – Payments to CIs by Third-Parties
Payments made by third parties to CIs for illegal purchases or services while acting on
behalf of OI are considered proceeds of the operation and the full amount must be
surrendered to OI. At no time should the CI retain a portion of these funds. Subsequent
payments by OI to the CI based on the activities of the CI that resulted in the illegal
income are POI or commissions. They will be processed pursuant to approval levels and
procedures in accordance with the current OI policy on informants.
Note: Operational personnel should contact the Undercover Operations Unit if there are
any additional questions on how to document transactions involving CIs within a
certified undercover operation.

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6.9

Currency Pick-up Operations

This Section provides the administrative guidelines for maintaining records relating to
certified undercover operations that conduct currency pick-up transactions. For further
information regarding requirements and operational policies, contact the Headquarters
Unit responsible for national policies governing financial investigations.
6.9.1 Currency Pick-up Log
A currency Pick-up Log will be maintained for each and every pick-up. (A sample log is
contained in Appendix C.) The purpose of the log is to establish a complete record of the
approvals and relevant details for the transactions resulting from an operational pick-up
event. The log will be updated until the balance is liquidated and retained as part of the
operation’s permanent files. The following policy applies:
A. The total amount of the pick-up will be entered into the log.
B. The amount forwarded to the target (laundered) will be entered.
C. Any points (commissions) due and held by the operation will be shown as
transferred to proceeds.
D. Any commissions paid to a CI (based on a PAA) will be entered.
E. POI payments that relate to the pick-up will not be documented in the log.
POI payments are not paid directly from these funds. Any related POI
payment from pick-up proceeds are documented on an ICE Form 73-293
pursuant to current ICE policy.
6.9.2

Currency Pick-up Transaction Approval

Operational management (GS or above) can approve transactions that cause pick-up
funds (proceeds) to remain in U.S. Government control regardless of the amount.
A second-line supervisor (ASAC or above) must approve each transaction involving
pick-up funds (proceeds) sent outside U.S. Government control regardless of the amount.
Approval may be verbal (annotated on the Pick-Up Log) but must be followed by written
approval which must be included in the operation’s pick-up file.
All pick-up transactions will also be recorded in CUFFS in compliance with the
procedures in the CUFFS Manual.
6.9.3

Currency Pick-up/Target Directed Funds

Funds picked up or received by other means (e.g., wire transfer), from a target or other
persons that will be used to purchase items that will be delivered to the target or other
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persons as part of a money laundering scheme (i.e., Black Market Peso Exchange) are
target-directed funds. These funds will be treated as pick-ups for documentation
purposes. Items purchased for delivery to the target or other persons are not considered
expenses of the operation and are not included in the 6-month expenditure authorization
plan.
6.10

File Systems Required for Undercover Activity

It is essential that the activities of an undercover operation be sufficiently documented
and the records maintained in an organized manner. This will facilitate the application
and review of internal controls and audits. The following files and logs will be
established and maintained for documenting undercover activities and operations:
6.10.1 Undercover Operations Unit File Requirements
The Undercover Operations Unit will maintain files related to:
A. each ICE certified undercover operation; and
B. each ICE accredited undercover operative.
6.10.2 SAC Office File Requirements
Each SAC office, regardless of the existence of a certified undercover operation, will
maintain the following undercover-related files:
A. Undercover Identification – These files (normally maintained by the GS) shall
contain a record of each SA (including TFOs or other individuals) issued
undercover identification as required by Section 9.1.6, “Control of Personal
Undercover Identification”;
B. Personal Undercover Checking Account Records – These files (normally
maintained by the GS) shall contain the SAC approval documentation and
copies of bank information for all individual undercover accounts maintained
by an agent (including TFOs) within the SAC AOR. The files shall contain
copies of reconciled bank statements that clearly differentiate personal
transactions and official transactions required by Section 9.2.1, “Individual
(Personal) Undercover Bank Accounts”;
C. Personal Undercover Credit Card Records – These files (normally maintained
by the GS) shall contain the SAC approval documentation copies of credit
card account information for each undercover credit card issued to an agent
(including TFOs) within the SAC AOR. The files shall contain copies of
monthly statements that clearly differentiate personal transactions and official
transactions required by Section 9.2.2, “Individual (Personal) Undercover
Credit Cards”; and
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D. ULC Files – These files (maintained by the Primary Field ULC) shall contain
a record of each undercover operative’s training and other documents required
by the ULC Program (see Chapter 10, “Undercover Liaison Coordinator
Program”).
Note: The documentation mandated by the requirements set forth in Subsections of A, B,
and C of 6.10.2 may be consolidated into one file.
6.10.3 Certified Undercover Operation File Requirements
The files, records, and documents of a certified undercover operation are generally the
responsibility of the operation’s CUC Lead/Administrative GS, with the assistance of the
CUC Program Manager and the CUFFS Administrator.
The following files are required for each Certified Undercover Operation:
A. Proposal and Certification Memoranda – This file shall contain a copy of the
finalized application/re-authorization proposal that was presented to the URC,
all supporting documents, and a copy of the certification signed by the
Director of OI.
B. Certified Undercover Operation’s Monthly Financial Review Worksheet –
This file shall contain documentation regarding the monthly SAC review and
approval of the operation’s CUFFS records required by Section 7.1, “SAC
Monthly Reports (Financial).”
C. Expenditures –
1) General requirements – The file shall contain documentation and expense
approval for each operational expenditure.
2) Expenses paid with undercover credit cards – In addition to Subsection
C.1, the file shall contain copies of statements showing undercover
operational expenses, documentation, and expense approval.
D. Bank Statements – This file shall contain all operational bank statements,
including documentation of reconciliation.
E. Property Log – This file shall contain a log of all property purchased by
and/or controlled by the undercover operation (operational property should be
included in the OI inventory system as required) (see also “Property/
Equipment Log for Undercover Operations” (Appendix D)).
F. Property Use Files – This file shall contain details of property use and
distribution for all property controlled by the undercover operation.

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G. Petty Cash Daily Register – This file shall contain a detailed register of all
petty cash transactions, if applicable.
H. Record of Petty Cash Review – This file shall contain documentation of the
regularly occurring SAC audits/reviews of the petty cash account, if
applicable.
I. Pick-up Log (for financial pick-up operations) – This file shall contain a
detailed log of all operational pick-ups required by Section 6.9, “Currency
Pick-up Operations.” (See also “Pick-Up Log for Undercover Operations”
(Appendix C)).
J. Primary Personnel Log – This file shall contain a detailed log of personnel
involved in the undercover operation, the dates they were involved, and their
specific role. The names and titles of the following key personnel and the
period of time that they held the operational role will be documented:
1) CUC Administrative Overseer(s);
2) CUC Lead/Administrative GS;
3) CUC Program Manager;
4) Undercover operative(s); and
5) CUFFS Administrator (Record-Keeper).
Each time an individual is assigned one of these positions (or is replaced), it will
be recorded in the Primary Personnel Log.
K. SAC audits and reviews – this file shall contain copies of all audit and review
documents generated within the SAC office.
L. Field Reviews and OPR Management Inspection Unit (MIU) Audits – this file
shall contain a copy of each Undercover Operations Unit Field Review and
each OPR/MIU Audit report. Additionally, the file should contain the SAC
response to field review and audit findings.
Note: Electronic files are allowed as long as they are in compliance with DHS
Management Directive 0550.1, Records Management, and DHS Records Management
Handbook, v.2, dated January 2005, and related ICE policy.
6.11

Financial Records of a Certified Undercover Operation

CUFFS is the financial record-keeping system for all OI certified undercover operations.
All operations that have been certified to use any of the statutory exemptions of 19
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U.S.C. § 2081 and 9 U.S.C. § 1363a must establish and maintain CUFFS records. All
funds, whether appropriated or proceeds, received and expended in conducting a certified
undercover operation, shall be accounted for and reported in CUFFS.
A current CUFFS manual and the chart of accounts for certified undercover operations
can be obtained by contacting the CUFFS Coordinator, Undercover Operations Unit. The
accounting software (QuickBooks and subsequent updates) required for CUFFS must be
purchased by the operation; this is considered a necessary and reasonable expense of the
operation.
CUFFS serves as an extension of the official ICE financial management system and
tracks all operational income (appropriated and proceeds) and all operational
expenditures. The CUFFS records serve to:
A. establish a uniform accounting system, which is the primary source for fiscal
control and audits of financial transactions in certified undercover operations;
B. provide a mechanism for oversight by managers who are responsible to
monitor the proper use of statutory exemptions; and
C. provide the information needed for input into the official ICE financial
management system to liquidate advances from appropriated funds and
account for the generation and expenditure of proceeds.
ICE managers will monitor the use of the statutory authority for expenditures in
undercover operations through the review of required monthly financial data that are
forwarded to the Headquarters CUFFS Coordinator, Undercover Operations Unit, and
forwarded to the Dallas Finance Center. It is imperative that field managers ensure that
each CUFFS Administrator properly enters all transactions of an undercover operation
into the CUFFS records.
6.11.1 Required Details (CUFFS Transactions)
To facilitate the documentation of funds used in support of a certified undercover
operation:
A. All transactions in support of an operation must be recorded in CUFFS,
including, but not limited to:
1) all income of the operation, including appropriated funds and proceeds;
2) all operational expenses paid with CUC appropriated funds (no-year
funds);
3) all operational expenses paid with Headquarters-appropriated funds,
including asset forfeiture funds (fiscal year funds);
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4) all operational expenses paid with SAC-appropriated funds;
5) all operational expenses paid with proceeds;
6) all operational POI/POE paid with appropriated funds, asset forfeiture
funds, or proceeds;
7) all commissions paid as part of the operation; and
8) all operational expenditures made through the use of a credit card (covert
or overt).
B. The name and memo field of each CUFFS entry must include sufficient
descriptive information to adequately identify the transaction.
C. A TECS case number will be included in the CUFFS records whenever a
transaction can be linked to a specific case.
Note: Appropriated SAC funds expended by the SAC under FAR for generic items (e.g.,
cameras, radios, vehicles, tape recorders, etc.) that are not dedicated for use in an
undercover operation, and which subsequently are used by, or loaned to, the operation
and which will be returned to the SAC for general office use should not be listed as
expenditures of the operation or recorded in CUFFS. This also applies to fuel and
maintenance for SAC-owned or SAC-leased vehicles used in support of undercover
activities (e.g., surveillance and cover teams) if the vehicles are not dedicated for the sole
use of the undercover operation.
Note: In extraordinary circumstances, a specific written waiver for the requirement that
non-operational funds (funds other than proceeds or CUC-appropriated funds) expended
as part of the operation be tracked in CUFFS may be granted by the DAD, ISD, as long
as the waiver includes a requirement that documentation regarding the funds expended is
included in the operation’s permanent files.
6.11.2 Backup of Data for CUFFS
Due to the importance of the electronic data and the significant amount of time that
would be required to reconstruct, it is essential that a back-up copy of CUFFS
(QuickBooks) computer records be created and updated regularly. The CUFFS
Administrator will make a back-up copy of the CUFFS financial data:
A. on a device (hard drive, flash drive, CD-burner, etc.) other than the device
which holds the original data;
B. that will be maintained in a secure area substantially away from the original
data files; and

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C. at the end of any day when a significant number of entries were made or, at a
minimum of, once per month.
Previous back-up copies need not be retained.
6.12

CUFFS Administrator for Certified Undercover Operations

To ensure operational security, oversight, and accountability, the CUFFS Administrator
shall be an OI employee. The Director of OI may grant a written exception for this
requirement on a case-by-case basis (i.e., a contractor hired under FAR or other approved
U.S. Government contract).
Operational funds may not be used for payment or reimbursement of the salary paid to a
contract CUFFS Administrator.
6.12.1 CUFFS Administrator – Separation of Duties
To ensure financial integrity and avoid any appearance of conflict of interest, a separation
of duties for the CUFFS Administrator will be maintained. The CUFFS Administrator
will not:
A. have signature authority on any operational bank account, including
transactional access to on-line banking (see Section 6.14.2, “Bank Accounts
with On-line Access”);
B. have approval authority for any operational expenditures;
C. make purchases for the operation; or
D. conduct any required internal audit of the operation (with the exception of
self-audits).
6.13

Use of Undercover Credit Cards in Certified Undercover Operations

This Section provides policies and procedures for the issuance, use, and control of
undercover credit cards that have been obtained to support a certified undercover
operation and its proprietary businesses.
These guidelines are to be applied during an ongoing certified undercover operation.
For policy and guidance relating to individual undercover credit cards, see Section 9.2.2,
“Individual (Personal) Undercover Credit Cards.”
The use of an undercover credit card to expend undercover appropriated funds or
proceeds is an action under the statutory exemptions of 19 U.S.C. § 2081(a)(3) and 8

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U.S.C. § 1363a(a)(4). Therefore, only transactions that are necessary and reasonable for
the conduct of the certified undercover operation may be paid with operational funds.
Copies of all records of operational transactions using undercover credit cards, and the
payment thereof, must be maintained in the CUFFS files of the operation incurring the
expense. Unless issued as personal undercover identification under Section 9.2.2,
“Individual (Personal) Undercover Credit Cards,” undercover credit cards may not be
used for personal transactions.
SAs using undercover credit card accounts obtained to support a certified undercover
operation must adhere to the following conditions:
A. Prior written approval for each credit card account must be obtained from the
SAC and kept on file in the office (the written approval will contain the
instruction that the account is authorized by OI and therefore must be closed
at the request of OI).
B. All accounts must remain current and in good standing with the issuing
financial institution at all times.
C. Operational personnel must avoid interest charged to the account except by
written authorization of the SAC indicating that the charge is a necessary and
reasonable expense of the operation.
D. Except under exigent circumstances, transactions must be approved in
advance.
E. Account maintenance fees may be paid with operational funds.
F. All transactions conducted using the operation’s credit card must be posted to
the operation’s CUFFS records.
G. Copies of all monthly billing statements and supporting receipts must remain
with the operation’s books and records.
6.14

Bank Accounts (Covert and Overt)

After certification has been obtained, bank accounts may be opened and used to support
certified undercover operations which hold the appropriate exemptions under 19 U.S.C. §
2081(a)(2) and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a(a)(3). Multiple bank accounts may be established, as
needed, in order to accomplish the mission of the operation. This Section provides
guidelines for the administration and control of these operational bank accounts.

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6.14.1 Control of Bank Accounts
When a bank account is opened and/or closed in a certified undercover operation, the
following information will be transmitted to the Undercover Operations Unit:
A. the operation’s name and TECS program code;
B. the name of the bank;
C. the address of the bank;
D. the type of account;
E. the account name;
F. the account number; and
G. a statement as to whether it is a covert or overt account.
Operational bank accounts should have more than one authorized signatory in order to
avoid unnecessary complications if operational personnel become unavailable.
All transactions in an operational bank account will be posted to CUFFS. There shall be
a separation of duties between personnel performing the recording and approving
functions. As an internal control, the approving official shall not have exclusive
signature authority over a bank account.
If investigative needs dictate, multiple operations may deposit funds in the same bank
account, as long as:
A. each operation has received a separate certification authorizing the deposit of
funds;
B. each operation maintains separate records of related transactions in its
CUFFS;
C. proceeds from one operation are not used to support another operation (except
as authorized in Section 6.4.1(1), “Reimbursement of Supporting Operations
(within OI),” and
D. the co-mingled funds are returned to their respective operations at the earliest
possible time.
Note: This practice is strongly discouraged as it can create unnecessary audit
trail/accounting issues.

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6.14.2 Bank Accounts with On-line Access
Certified undercover operation bank accounts, whether overt or covert, must maintain
operational integrity. The following guidelines apply to Internet banking, telephone
banking, and direct computer banking:
A. Only operational personnel with signature authority for the operation’s bank
account shall have access and the ability to execute an on-line banking
transaction. It is recommended that on-line banking be delegated to no more
than two people within the operation, with strict controls in place.
B. CUFFS Administrators will not have on-line access to operational accounts
that encompass the authority to make expenditures and to conduct related
banking transactions, such as transfers of funds. However, CUFFS
Administrators may have restricted on-line “view-only access” to an
operational bank account, if this feature is available.
C. Only banks that use appropriate on-line security protocols while conducting
on-line financial transactions shall be used for on-line banking. Due to
security concerns, there shall be no direct interface between an on-line
banking system and CUFFS/QuickBooks.
D. Computers utilized for covert banking transactions must be Governmentowned through undercover purchase or forfeited and sanitized to ensure that
the systems do not contain registration information indicating that the
hardware was purchased or is being used by the U.S. Government. Software
used for on-line banking shall not be registered to the government and shall be
properly licensed, preferably to an undercover identity. Lists of recommended
software for undercover computers are available from the Cyber Crimes
Center (C3). Covert bank accounts shall be accessed only through undercover
Internet access accounts that are registered and backstopped with undercover
identities/businesses, consistent with the covert bank account registrant’s
identity. Overt accounts may be accessed via U.S. Government computers
with corresponding overt Internet access. No link should exist or be created
between overt and covert bank accounts.
E. All on-line transactions should be accompanied by a properly executed
CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form and shall bear a notification
indicating that the transaction was executed over the Internet.
6.14.3 Reconciliation of Operational Bank Accounts
As part of the monthly financial review, account statements, supporting documents, and
related CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Forms will be:

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A. reconciled with CUFFS and a copy of the CUFFS (QuickBooks)
reconciliation statement must be attached to the bank statement(s) in the
operation’s files;
B. reviewed (and initialed) by the CUC Lead/Administrative GS to ensure
compliance with this policy; and
C. maintained as part of the operation’s records.
6.14.4 Accounts in the Name of OI (Overt)
After the proper certifications have been obtained, an overt account must be opened in
the name of OI, to be utilized in furtherance of undercover operations. It may be used to:
A. facilitate the electronic transfer of appropriated funds from OI Headquarters to
a certified operation;
B. support transactions of the petty cash fund;
C. support transactions for goods and services in compliance with FAR; or
D. conduct any other transactions to support an operation where covertness
and/or security will not be jeopardized.
Operational overt bank accounts are subject to the following restrictions:
A. Only funds from a certified undercover operation may flow through the
account. The account shall not be used to receive any funds (i.e., POI/POE)
unrelated to the certified undercover operation.
B. Care will be taken not to compromise covert accounts by means of
transactions with overt accounts; therefore, there shall be NO transactions
linking or creating a paper trail between overt and covert accounts.
C. All transactions involving the account must be entered into the CUFFS
records of the certified operation.
D. Funds in the accounts must be safeguarded, as specified in Section 6.16,
“Safeguarding Funds.”
6.14.5 Foreign Bank Accounts
The exemptions contained in 19 U.S.C. § 2081(a)(2) and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a(a)(3) allowing
the deposit of U.S. Government funds into commercial bank accounts is not limited to
banks in the United States. Prior to an undercover operation establishing a foreign bank

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account, the Director of OI shall approve an undercover operation proposal that includes
a statement regarding the need to open and utilize a foreign bank account.
It is critical that, in all instances, there be proper coordination with the appropriate ICE
Attaché (1811 series) of foreign undercover activity, including bank accounts. The ICE
Attaché (1811 series) will liaise with the appropriate foreign entity designated by the host
government regarding the authority to maintain undercover accounts. After determining
the requirements for maintaining an undercover account, the ICE Attaché (1811 series)
will establish an agreement with the host country relative to the account. It will be the
ICE Attaché’s (1811 series) responsibility to work with the host country in controlling
the movement of the funds through the foreign undercover bank account.
All the financial review requirements and restrictions that pertain to domestic bank
accounts will also pertain to foreign bank accounts.
6.14.5(1) Establishing a Foreign Bank Account
To establish a foreign bank account in support of an undercover operation, the
operation’s certification/recertification proposal (if required between recertification
periods by means of a memorandum) will include a specific request which:
A. demonstrates the operational need for the account;
B. includes the appropriate statutory exemption; and
C. details who will control the account.
Additionally, all requests for foreign bank accounts will require a memorandum from the
appropriate ICE Attaché (1811 series) that:
A. states concurrence with the proposed foreign bank account;
B. states that a review of the country’s banking and currency laws has been
conducted and that the proposed account activities either comply with host
country laws and restrictions or have been coordinated with host country
authorities to ensure proper host government authorization. (When
notification to the host country would jeopardize the security of an operation,
a detailed explanation and statement of appropriate approvals will be included
in the memorandum.); and
C. lists any applicable host country banking restrictions and reporting
requirements.
If a foreign account is needed in an ongoing certified undercover operation that did not
request approval in the original proposal, a memorandum of enhancement can be used to
amend the operational certification.
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Additionally, properly certified undercover operations may use the foreign bank accounts
of other certified operations, provided that they comply with Section 6.14.1, “Control of
Bank Accounts.”
6.14.5(2) Control of Funds in Foreign Bank Accounts
OI will exercise direct control over any undercover funds deposited in a foreign bank
account except when specifically authorized by the SAC. In situations where direct
control is not possible, control by a foreign law enforcement entity is allowed in cases
where the ICE Attaché (1811 series) has an SOP established with the foreign law
enforcement entity responsible for control of the funds. In cases where ICE will not
exercise direct control over funds deposited in a foreign bank account, the SAC will
exercise additional controls as appropriate. These accounts are subject to the same
controls detailed in Section 6.14, “Bank Accounts (Covert and Overt).”
6.15

Deposit of Foreign Government Law Enforcement Funds into ICE
Undercover Accounts (Covert and Overt)

Occasionally, OI is asked to assist in an investigation being conducted by a foreign
government law enforcement agency by allowing it to use one or more of our existing
undercover bank accounts (foreign or domestic). Such use solely in furtherance of an
investigation related to violations of foreign laws would be beyond the scope of the
statutory authority of 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a.
The exemptions granted under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a can be applied
only to the detection and prosecution of offenses within the jurisdictional authority of the
Secretary of Homeland Security. Accordingly, a certified undercover operation that
involves the deposit of funds by a foreign government law enforcement agency must:
A. initiate a joint investigation with the foreign government law enforcement
agency;
B. have a reasonable expectation of disclosing a violation of law enforced by
ICE;
C. coordinate all activities with the appropriate ICE Attaché (1811 series),
including providing written reports of the activities relating to the ICE
Attaché’s (1811 series) AOR;
D. document the details of the undercover account activity in a memorandum to
the ICE Attaché (1811 series), with a copy to the appropriate programmatic
Unit Chief(s); the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit; and the DAD,
ISD, to be retained in the operation’s permanent files; and
E. document all transactions in CUFFS as required.

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6.16

Safeguarding Funds

This Section contains guidelines which are meant to minimize the risk of loss of U.S.
Government funds from failed financial institutions and high-risk investments.
The managers of a certified undercover operation must be sensitive to the statutory
requirement to deposit proceeds no longer necessary for the conduct of the operation into
the U.S. Treasury. Because they make funds less liquid for the operation, certificates of
deposit will not be purchased unless required for an undercover investigative scenario.
6.16.1 Funds Deposited in Financial Institutions
The following guidelines will apply to all accounts opened under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8
U.S.C. § 1363a, whether overt or covert:
A. Accounts will be established in federally-insured financial institutions, unless
the nature of an operational investigation requires dealing with a particular
financial institution.
B. Before a bank account (other than at national or regional commercial banks)
can be opened, the solvency of the financial institution will be verified and
documented through OI’s Financial and Logistics Management Unit (FLMU),
MSD, and/or the appropriate federal regulatory agency.
C. Without jeopardizing the security of the operation, funds may be placed into
sweep accounts (defined in the Glossary of this Handbook) in order to protect
against bank insolvency.
D. Deposits should not exceed deposit insurance limits unless:
1) it is necessary for the conduct of the operation; and
2) it is approved by the SAC in a memorandum containing the relevant facts
pertaining to the need to exceed insured levels.
E. Deposits of investigative targets’ checks (or other financial instruments),
personal or third-party, should be avoided because of the potential for
fraudulent, stolen, counterfeit, or altered checks. Such checks can be returned
to the undercover account for collection long after the deposit, potentially
causing the undercover account to become overdrawn. Problems associated
with such negotiable instruments can be avoided by using alternative handling
methods (e.g., cashing checks at the account-holder’s bank).

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6.16.2 Safeguards Related to the Investment of Funds
Investment of U.S. Government funds is often a necessary and reasonable means to
backstop an undercover business or individual. Investments may also be required as part
of an undercover investigative strategy. The amount invested must be limited to the
requirements of the undercover operation.
Undercover operation funds may not be placed into accounts other than in conventional
savings and checking accounts (e.g., certificates of deposit, investment money market
accounts) without the written approval of the SAC. High-risk investments require
additional approval as stated in Section 6.16.2(1), “Authorization Required to Place
Funds in High-Risk Investments.”
6.16.2(1) Authorization Required to Place Funds in High-Risk Investments
U.S. Government funds may not be exposed to unnecessarily high-risk investments.
Speculative investments such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, investment real estate,
futures, derivatives, etc., are not permitted, unless:
A. the undercover investigative scenario requires the high-risk investment;
B. the funds placed at risk through the investments are kept to the minimum
amount and for the minimum time required to accomplish the investigative
goal;
C. the high-risk investment is reviewed by the URC (as part of the proposal/recertification process or by memorandum requesting an enhancement of the
operation); and
D. the high-risk investment is approved by the Director of OI.
6.17

Expenditure Approval Levels (FAR and Non-FAR)

As part of the authorization/certification process, the Director of OI authorizes the
spending levels contained in an operation’s 6-month expenditure authorization plan.
Individual expenditures within the operation must be approved separately, using the
“CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form” (Appendix B).
All operational travel expenditures shall be approved by the SAC unless specifically
delegated in writing.
All POI/POE expenditures will be approved at the level mandated by the current OI
policy on CIs.
FAR and non-FAR expenditures under the business/purchase exemption contained in 19
U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a can be approved at the following levels:
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6.17.1 Levels of Approval for Non-Property (Items That Will Not Be Inventoried):
A. up to $4,999 – GS;
B. up to $14,999 – ASAC and RAC;
C. up to $29,999 – Deputy SAC;
D. up to $49,999 – SAC
E. up to $99,999 – DAD, ISD; and
F. over $99,999 – Director of OI.
6.17.2 Levels of Approval for Property (Items That Will Be Inventoried):
A. up to $2,499 – GS;
B. up to $9,999 – ASAC and RAC;
C. up to $19,999 – Deputy SAC
D. up to $24,999 – SAC;
E. up to $49,999 – DAD, ISD; and
F. over $49,999 – Director of OI.
Each field manager will be responsible for monitoring operational expenditures to ensure
that they are within the 6-month expenditure authorization plan approved by the Director
of OI.
6.18

Approval of Expenditures

All expenditures, including those approved via an ICE Form 73-293, must be approved
and/or documented on the CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form (Appendix B) prior
to the expense being incurred. Operational personnel shall use the CUFFS
Expense/Advance Approval Form in lieu of other standard government expense forms,
unless the government standard form is required (i.e., FAR purchases exceeding $2,500
(for services) or $3,000 (for supplies) - see Section 6.19.2(2), “FAR Purchases Over
$2,500 for Services and $3,000 for Supplies”). In situations such as this, both a CUFFS
Expense/Advance Approval Form and the current required standard government
procurement form will be used.
A CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form is required for each transaction that utilizes
the funds of a certified undercover operation (Proceeds or CUC Appropriated Funds).
The CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form is a multi-part document that is meant for
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use within a SAC office and should not be forwarded to Headquarters for approval
signatures. Required approvals at the Headquarters-level will be obtained by means of a
“Request for Approval of a One Time Expenditure” memorandum or an ICE Form 73293, as applicable. After Headquarters’ approval is obtained, operational personnel
should annotate the CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form with “see attached
(memorandum or ICE Form 73-293) dated (MM/DD/YY) for required approval.”
A CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form is not required when non-operational funds
(e.g., SAC funds, Treasury Forfeiture Fund funds, HIDTA funds) are used to pay
operational expenses. These expenditures must be recorded in CUFFS. The appropriate
documentation showing the source, purpose, and expenditure of such funds must be
included in the operations files. At the discretion of operational management, a CUFFS
Expense/Advance Approval Form may be used to document the posting of these
transactions in CUFFS.
6.18.1 Approval of Expenditures (Exigent Circumstances)
Reimbursement of any expenditures that did not receive prior approval because of
exigent circumstances may be approved later by using a CUFFS Expense/Advance
Approval Form with an attached memorandum (from a GS or higher to the operational
file), which:
A. explains the exigency that existed;
B. has available supporting documentation attached;
C. is approved by the appropriate supervisor; and
D. is maintained as part of the operation’s records.
6.18.2 Receipts for Expenditures
Every expenditure of funds must be adequately supported by a receipt or other
documentation that includes the following information:
A. the date payment was made;
B. the payee and amount paid; and
C. a description of the items purchased or of the services provided.
A receipt constitutes documentation of, and reasonable proof for, a financial transaction.
Goods and services paid for by credit card (e.g., hotel bill, rental car, lease agreement,
etc.) should be accompanied by the original receipt and the original credit card slip listing
the charge. In instances where purchases are made on-line, a screen print of the on-line
order and purchase confirmation can substitute for a normal receipt.
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6.18.3 Substitute Receipts for Expenditures
If a receipt is unavailable or impractical to obtain due to an undercover situation, then a
memorandum to the file must substitute for the receipt. The memorandum should contain
the required transaction information, as stated in Section 6.18.2, “Receipts for
Expenditures,” and a statement explaining the reason a receipt is unavailable. The person
who incurred the expense and the appropriate manager shall sign the memorandum. The
memorandum will be maintained as part of the records of the operation as if it were a
receipt. This Section applies to receipts unavailable because of loss or other approved
reason.
6.19

Operational Purchases

Operational funds may be expended following the requirements of the FAR or outside the
scope of FAR, as appropriate.
Expenditures that are reasonable and necessary for the conduct of the operation and
which do not jeopardize the security, safety, and covertness of the undercover operatives
or operation must be accomplished under the provisions of FAR.
All procedures and policies relating to ordinary U.S. Government transactions will apply
to these purchases. This includes adherence to the ICE purchase card “Don’t Buy List”
and “Don’t Buy Without Approval List” and the $2,500 limit (for services) and $3,000
limit (for supplies) on transactions. These are informal lists issued by Procurement,
Office of Financial Management, and apply to certain items purchased under FAR. The
lists, which should be reviewed whenever an operation is making a purchase under FAR,
do not apply to purchases covered under the business/purchase exemption. A copy of the
lists may be obtained from ICE Headquarters Procurement.
6.19.1 Purchases Outside the Scope of FAR Using the Business/Purchase Exemption
(Covert)
Expenditures that are reasonable and necessary for the conduct of the operation and in
which the U.S. Government’s involvement must be disguised in order to maintain the
covert nature or to ensure the safety and security of the operation can be accomplished
outside the provisions of FAR. The business/purchase exemption is the aspect of 19
U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a which provides an undercover investigative
operation the ability to expend U.S. Government funds (including proceeds) without
compliance with FAR. (See Section 6.2.4, “Expenditure Flow Chart.”) These
transactions, using the business/purchase exemption, would be accomplished using the
operation’s covert bank account (and other covert assets as necessary) in the same way
that any normal transaction by a non-government entity would be accomplished. These
purchases are subject to the approval levels established in Section 6.17, “Expenditure
Approval Levels (FAR and Non-FAR).”

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Property purchased outside FAR must be liquidated or disposed of in accordance with
Section 14.3, “Liquidation of Assets.”
6.19.2 Purchases Under FAR (Overt)
All property purchased through normal FAR guidelines is ICE property. When no longer
needed by the operation, it may be transferred (upon proper authorization) to the SAC
and utilized in the accomplishment of ICE’s mission. This applies whether the purchase
was funded by proceeds or appropriated funds. The property shall be treated in the same
manner as any other property owned by ICE and must comply with established propertymanagement and inventory procedures.
Note: The following FAR guidelines are subject to change and operational management
should ensure that the most current guidelines are followed. If new or additional FAR
guidelines are developed, the newer guidelines should be followed. Questions should be
addressed to the Undercover Operations Unit.
All FAR purchases within a certified undercover operation should be paid from an
operational overt bank account. Operational personnel may obtain a debit/credit card
(check card) for their overt bank accounts. These may be used for purchases under
$2,500 (for services) or under $3,000 (for supplies).
6.19.2(1) FAR Purchases Under $2,500 for Services or $3,000 for Supplies
If FAR purchases of items costing under $2,500 for services or $3,000 for supplies per
vendor are necessary and reasonable, then operational personnel:
A. are required to utilize a CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form (Appendix
B);
B. are required to utilize a tax-exempt form (as applicable);
C. may use payment of choice to the vendor from their overt bank account, i.e., a
check, cashier’s check, money order, overt bank debit, credit card, or cash (the
petty cash fund may be used to make FAR purchases under $2,500 for
services or $3,000 for supplies - see Section 6.6, “Petty Cash Fund,” for
further information); and
D. are required to properly document the transaction in CUFFS.
6.19.2(2) FAR Purchases Over $2,500 for Services and $3,000 for Supplies
All FAR purchases over $2,500 for services and $3,000 for supplies must be coordinated
with the FLMU, MSD. Requests with proper documentation (as outlined below) must be
sent to “OI-Requisitions@dhs.gov” in Microsoft Outlook (or contact FLMU).

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If FAR purchases of items costing over $2,500 for services and $3,000 for supplies, per
vendor, are necessary and reasonable, then operational personnel are required to:
A. complete a CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form (Appendix B);
B. identify three vendors who sell the item in order to determine the best
value/price (unless purchased from an established U.S. Government contract)
and provide FLMU with three estimates with the requisition, as part of the
market research requirement (Note: SAs may use the GSA Advantage website
to conduct market research and obtain the three estimates. It should be noted
that receiving estimates by posting Request for Quotes on Ebuy is not
authorized.);
C. send to FLMU a completed FFMS G-514 Requisition Form, with attached
copies of the estimates from the three vendors (there will be no accounting
string information as this is an operational purchase);
D. if purchased through a U.S. Government contractor, include the contractor’s
number on the requisition form;
E. ensure that the selected vendors are Central Contract Registered
(www.ccr.gov);
F. forward to FLMU the “Special Fund(s) Certification” Standard Form (Contact
the Undercover Operations Unit for the latest version) signed by the
Investigative GS or higher, verifying that operational funds are available for
procurement;
G. keep copies of all paperwork in the operation’s permanent files for auditing
purposes; and
H. properly document the transaction in CUFFS.
6.20

Prohibited Expenditures

The following expenditures, using operational funds, are specifically prohibited:
A. expenses related exclusively to trial preparation and/or prosecutions;
B. plaques, pins, patches, and/or other forms of mementos that do not directly
support the operation’s and/or operative’s undercover identity. This includes
mementos that would be given to agents, police officers, U.S. Attorneys, or
any others who worked on an operational investigation;
C. law enforcement equipment that does not directly support the operation’s
and/or operative’s undercover identity including, but not limited to: raid
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jackets/hats; body armor; weapons; Special Response Team equipment and
accessories; emergency vehicle equipment (lights, sirens, etc.); and law books
for general office use;
D. purchase, lease, or rental of vehicles, vessels, or aircraft, other than those
being used specifically and exclusively for the undercover operation;
E. conferences and training that do not directly support the mission and/or
covertness of the operation and/or the operative’s undercover identity (any
training or conference expense which directly supports the operation requires
the prior written approval of the DAD, ISD);
F. maintenance and fuel for U.S. Government-owned or Government-leased
vehicles that are not being used specifically and exclusively for the
undercover operation;
G. any other equipment, furniture, or supplies that are not being used specifically
and exclusively for the undercover operation;
H. payment or reimbursement of the salary paid to a contract CUFFS
Administrator. However, in limited circumstances and after approval from the
DAD, ISD, a certified undercover operation may purchase the services of a
Certified Public Accountant or bookkeeper to audit or maintain the records of
an undercover proprietary business. The business/purchase exemption under
19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a would be applied, and these services
may be paid for as a necessary and reasonable expense of the operation using
proceeds or appropriated funds.
Note: The above prohibitions do not preclude the SAC from using SAC-appropriated
funds or other U.S. Government-appropriated funds (excluding CUC-appropriated funds)
to purchase such items for the SAC office and then making the items available for use by
the operation.
6.21

Accounting for Certified Undercover Operation Property

All property acquired in the course of an undercover operation will be entered into the
Property/Equipment Log for Undercover Operations (Appendix D). The log must list
any property that has been provided by the SAC and, because of its use and location,
cannot be properly tracked by the usual property management procedures. In addition, a
Property Use File should be established and maintained to record the location and the
individual responsible for the property item.
Access to property and its assignment to operational personnel will be limited to the
authorized individuals who are designated as the certified undercover operation’s
property officers. In most cases, the property officers will be the CUC

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Lead/Administrative GS and an alternate. Operational property will be controlled and
made available to be signed in or out by the property officers.
Property that is purchased outside FAR, pursuant to the business/purchase exemption,
can be used only by the operation that purchased it, unless:
A. another certified undercover operation, in support of its proprietary business,
funds the transfer with the understanding that the property must be liquidated
at the conclusion of the acquiring operation; or
B. the property is seized, forfeited, and retained for official use.
(See Section 14.3, “Liquidation of Assets,” for guidance on the final disposition/
liquidation of property acquired in a certified undercover operation.)
6.22

Travel in Support of Undercover Operations

Like any other expenditure, both appropriated funds and proceeds may be used to pay for
travel that is necessary and reasonable for the conduct of the certified undercover
operation. Operational funds shall not be used to pay for travel that is not directly related
to the certified undercover operation.
All travel (covert or overt) related to a certified undercover operation shall be
documented using a manual travel authorization, a manual travel voucher, and a CUFFS
Expense/Advance Approval Form. This documentation will be processed and maintained
in accordance with the provisions of this Handbook. The original documents and all
supporting receipts will be maintained in the operation’s financial records and recorded in
CUFFS.
All travel paid for using operational funds (proceeds or CUC-appropriated funds)
requires the approval of the SAC unless specifically delegated in writing.
Note: Notwithstanding the Federal Travel Regulations (FTR), a receipt is required for
every expense. (See Section 6.18.2, “Receipts for Expenditures.”)
Note: In cases where certified undercover operational travel paid by appropriated funds
(funds other than proceeds or CUC-appropriated funds) and documented in Travel
Manager, SACs will have controls in place to ensure that such travel expenses are in
compliance with the policy set forth in this Handbook.
6.22.1 Travel at Actual Expense (Approval and Documentation)
Except with specific approvals, all travel (overt and covert) must be in compliance with
the limits set in the FTR. These policies apply to all travel, including travel by
undercover operatives, CIs, cover agents, and supervisors. SAC approval is required for
actual subsistence travel expenses.
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Undercover expenses incurred during travel are not travel expenses and are therefore not
subject to the limits of FTR. However, without direct approval of the SAC,
reimbursement for per diem or meals and incidental expenses cannot exceed 300 percent
of the rate applicable to the temporary duty location. That amount may be exceeded only
when a memorandum or, in exigent circumstances, verbal permission granting prior
approval by the SAC and documented after the fact
A. includes a TECS case number and specifies the circumstances warranting
approval of subsistence travel in excess of 300 percent of per diem; and
B. all such expenses are documented in the operational CUFFS records.
6.22.2 Premium (Including First and Business) Class Travel
All requests for undercover related premium (including first and business) class travel
must be forwarded to the Director of OI through the appropriate DAD. The request must
contain supervisory certification that the premium class travel is necessary and
reasonable, i.e., the traveler’s physical location on the conveyance is an integral part of
the clandestine mission. Undercover assignments and en route surveillance duties are
characteristic examples of these situations. In these cases, the employee’s physical
location on the conveyance is dependent on the suspect violator’s location.
The Director of OI is responsible for reviewing and approving requests for business class
travel, and reviewing and forwarding for approval requests for first-class travel when
such travel is necessary to accomplish a covert investigative work assignment.
Supervisory certification must be obtained and maintained on file for each such
assignment. Authorization for premium class travel shall be requested at the earliest
possible time, but no later than 10 business days prior to the travel.
If emergency circumstances exist and it is impossible to obtain prior approval for
premium class travel, the SAC may approve the travel and shall send a memorandum
through the DAD, ISD, to the Director of OI at the earliest possible time, but no later than
2 business days after the start of the travel. The memorandum will:
A. describe the circumstances that required the emergency SAC approval of the
premium class travel;
B. contain supervisory certification that the premium class travel is necessary and
reasonable, i.e., the traveler’s physical location on the conveyance is an
integral part of the clandestine mission; and
C. request concurrence, with the SAC approval, by the Director of OI.
A copy of the memorandum and any subsequent correspondence from the Director of OI
must be included in the operation’s financial records.
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6.22.3 Travel by Confidential Informants
A CI’s operational travel must be documented in the manner specified in Section 6.22,
“Travel in Support of Undercover Operatives,” Subsection 6.22.1, “Travel at Actual
Expense (Approval and Documentation) and Subsection 6.22.2, “Premium (Including
First and Business) Class Travel.” The CI’s number and/or assumed name will be used
for identity purposes on all travel documents. An ICE Form 73-293 will be required as
the receipt for all the payments to the CI.
In circumstances where the CI is unavailable to physically accept any reimbursement for
travel expenses, the funds may be paid by EFT and a CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval
Form may be used. The CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form must be attached to
the travel voucher. The SA responsible for the EFT payment will cite the CI’s source
number and write “paid by EFT” and also affix the SA’s name and signature in the
appropriate place on the travel voucher and ICE Form 73-293. All CI bank accounts used
for this purpose must be vetted by operational personnel through TECS Case
Management, and the documentation of the vetting must be attached to the wire receipt.
In circumstances where the CI’s travel is partially paid by the operation, a memorandum
itemizing the costs and reimbursements associated with that travel must be attached to the
travel voucher prior to the SAC’s (or properly authorized designee) approval for
payment.
Note: In cases where the CI’s true name appears on a receipt, the receipt should be
redacted and a memorandum of explanation should be attached to the redacted receipt.
6.23

Covert Expenditures for Safety and Security

During the course of an undercover investigation, operational needs often require that
goods and services be procured in a manner that does not reveal the involvement of the
U.S. Government. As described above, most of these needs can be met by employing the
exemptions granted under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a. However, there are
times when a necessary and reasonable expense of an operation does not appear to be
covered by the business/purchase exemption, because it is also a requirement of the law
enforcement mission rather than for direct support of the undercover proprietary business.
There must be an authorized method for meeting the safety and security needs of the
operation that coincide with the more general law enforcement mission. These needs
usually involve expenditures for services such as airfare for cover agents, room rental for
operational security, surveillance vehicle rental, etc. that are necessary for the gathering
of evidence related to the undercover investigation.
6.23.1 Cover Agent Expenses
When an agent is required to travel in an undercover capacity, one or more cover agents
may be required for safety and security. This necessary and reasonable expense is in
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support of the covert nature of the investigative operation and is covered by the
exemptions granted by 19 U.S.C. § 2081(a)(3) and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a(a)(4). Under the
above guidelines, the procurement of tickets, hotel rooms, etc. can be retained outside the
FAR and FTR.
In order to avoid placing the operation in jeopardy or compromising a case, the Cover
Agents often need to purchase tickets outside the FAR and FTR at the standard rate
offered to the traveling public and travel using their undercover identity. These
expenditures can be made with the authorization of the SAC, or, except for travel, can be
delegated to the approval levels for non-property expenditures listed in Section 6.17.1,
“Levels of Approval for Non-Property (Items That Will Not Be Inventoried).”
In addition, the need to rent a vehicle for surveillance of an undercover meeting may be
authorized by an appropriate approving official if the rental is necessary and reasonable.
If the procurement under FAR would unduly delay the investigation and therefore
jeopardize the safety and security of SAs or the security and/or covertness of the
operation, the transaction can be accomplished outside FAR.
If, however, there are no issues related to safety and security requiring covert travel, the
travel should be accomplished within the scope of the FAR and FTR.
6.24

Funding Sources for Certified Undercover Operations

All funding issues should be directed to the Undercover Operations Unit. All funds
expended within an operation must be tracked in CUFFS.
6.24.1 Proceeds
Proceeds (defined in the Glossary of this Handbook) are funds acquired from a nonGovernment source during the undercover operation. These sources include, but are not
limited to:
A. Violator-directed funds/assets;
B. Income/profits from undercover endeavors;
C. Interest from operational bank accounts; and
D. Salary paid to an undercover agent (by the target).
Proceeds are no-year funds that stay in the operation until expended or otherwise
disposed of (i.e., forfeited to the U.S. Government or deposited into the U.S. Treasury as
miscellaneous receipts).
Proceeds are not programmed/allocated to any particular OCC until expended by the
operation. These funds can be expended for any necessary and reasonable expense
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(defined in Section 6.2.1, “Expenditures Must Be Necessary and Reasonable for the
Conduct of the Operation”) of the operation. At no time may the expenditures exceed the
current 6-month expenditure authorization plan.
6.24.2 CUC-Appropriated Funds
CUC-appropriated funds are statutory authorized funds controlled by the Undercover
Operations Unit. Once allocated to a certified undercover operation, these funds roll over
into the new fiscal year (no-year money) and do not expire at the end of the fiscal year.
These funds stay in the operation until they are spent or returned to Headquarters.
The request and authorization for CUC-appropriated funds is included on the 6-month
expenditure authorization plan of the undercover operation proposal. After certification,
the distribution of these funds is accomplished by means of a SAC memorandum to the
Director of OI requesting the distribution of the funds. Supplemental funding can be
requested at any time during the operation’s 6-month authorization period (i.e.,
unforeseen operational expenses (see also Section 6.2.3, “Unforeseen Expenses that Will
Exceed the Limit of the 6-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan for Certified
Undercover Operations”).
Due to OI budget constraints, approval of the funding request on the operation proposal’s
6-month expenditure authorization plan does not guarantee that the operation will obtain
the full amount requested.
CUC-appropriated funds are allocated (programmed) at the two-digit OCC level.
Operational personnel will make the determination as to how the funds are to be allocated
and include this information in the funds distribution memorandum (using the standard
format approved by the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit).
The funds must be expended within the OCC to which they are allocated.
The operation’s CUFFS Administrator, via a budget in CUFFS (QuickBooks), tracks
each separate CUC appropriation until expended.
6.24.2(1) Reallocation (Reprogramming) of CUC-Appropriated Funds
CUC-appropriated funds can be reallocated (reprogrammed) by way of a written request
to the Director of OI through the DAD, ISD. The Dallas Finance Center tracks the
expenditure of appropriated funds (not proceeds) by OCC and therefore must be informed
of any approved reallocation (reprogramming) of CUC appropriations. (The Undercover
Operations Unit should be contacted to obtain the standardized memorandum format.)
6.24.3 Recoverable Funds for Money Laundering
The request for, and authorization to use, recoverable funds (defined in the Glossary of
this Handbook) is included in the 6-month expenditure authorization plan of the
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undercover operation proposal. After certification, the distribution of these funds is
accomplished by means of a SAC memorandum (using the standard format approved by
the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit) requesting the distribution of funds and an
ICE Form 73-293. For the purposes of the use of recoverable funds, the Director of OI is
the approving official of ICE Form 73-293, regardless of the amount requested. The total
amount of recoverable funds is returned to OI Headquarters after the operational need for
the funds ends. Recoverable funds are similar in nature to a “Flash Roll,” except that the
funds may be retained by the operation over longer periods of time.
Proceeds can be used as recoverable funds by obtaining prior specific written approval
from the Director of OI. The use of proceeds as recoverable funds shall be noted via the
proposed 6-month authorization plan using the annotation “Proceeds for Laundering.”
(The Undercover Operations Unit should be contacted to obtain the standardized
memorandum format.)
6.24.4 SAC Funds
SAC funds are funds within the SAC’s budget and are sometimes used by operations for
smaller POI/POE and agent operational travel.
6.24.5 Other ICE Funds
Other ICE funds are generally controlled by other Investigative Programs Units and are
funds for special projects or specific targets (i.e., POI/POE, counterfeit pharmaceuticals
investigative project, high-threat human-trafficking organization, etc.)
These funds are generally year-end funds and expire with the fiscal year. These funds
must be expended, rolled over to the next fiscal year, or returned to Headquarters prior to
the end of the fiscal year. Generally, these funds are from the Treasury Executive Office
for Asset Forfeiture Fund or congressionally-mandated programs.
6.24.6 Non-Agency Funds
Non-agency funds are funds that come from other law enforcement agencies or U.S.
Government programs such as HIDTA and High Intensity Financial Crimes Area.
6.25

Lease Agreements

Lease agreement expenses must be approved at the level equal to the entire amount of the
lease agreement period prior to the implementation of the lease, not at the level of the
monthly expense. As with all individual expenses, the monthly lease expense will be
approved at the appropriate expense approval level prior to being paid.
ICE Counsel must review all lease agreements for legal sufficiency prior to
implementation.

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Note: Operational personnel are not required to have the total amount of the lease
expense on hand at the time of the lease execution.
6.26

Leased Vehicles

Operational funds may be used to lease vehicles as long as they are “necessary and
reasonable” expenses for the conduct of the undercover operation and are used
specifically and exclusively for activities associated with the operation. Furthermore, the
SAC must approve the use of all leased vehicles in writing. Written SAC approval must
occur prior to the initial certification and again at the time of all subsequent
reauthorizations (every 6 months).
Note: Under no circumstances (life threatening emergencies exempted) are personnel
above the first-line supervisor (GS) permitted to use operationally-funded (including
retained) vehicles.
The narrative portion of the operational proposal must include a statement of SAC
approval, specific or anticipated vehicle models, monthly and annual lease costs, operator
names, and a brief justification for the use of each vehicle. Additionally, an entry on the
cover page of both the application and reauthorization proposal shall indicate the
intended use of the leased vehicles.
A cost comparison should be made to determine the appropriate length of a vehicle’s
lease. Should the comparison determine that the penalty for early termination of a lease
is less than the sum of the monthly expenses for a lease of short duration, then a longer
lease should be employed. Vehicles remaining under lease at the conclusion of the
undercover operation must be returned to the lessor and the lease must be terminated.
If proceeds are generated from investigative activities of the undercover operation, then
proceeds must be used to pay for the expense of the leased vehicles. CUC-appropriated
funds may be used only when proceeds are unavailable.
Vehicles shall be leased under the provisions of FAR, unless the business/purchase
exemption is required, based on the need for a covert lease in order to maintain
operational covertness/security.

Chapter 7. MANAGEMENT CONTROLS AND REPORTING REQUIREMENTS
FOR UNDERCOVER OPERATIONS
Certified undercover operations by their nature require investigative and procurement
techniques that are unlike standard U.S. Government procedures. The authority granted
to OI to conduct certified undercover operations permits SAs to engage in activity as part
of an operation that is exempt from various statutes intended to create checks and
balances in the management of public monies. Therefore, it is imperative that field
managers employ proper controls that provide complete accountability for the use of this
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powerful investigative tool and all U.S. Government monies (appropriated and proceeds)
involved.
This Chapter provides a review of the management controls and reporting requirements
that serve to ensure that the activities of undercover operations are properly documented
and reviewed.
Additional requirements for management controls may be promulgated by the Unit Chief,
Undercover Operations Unit.
7.1

SAC Monthly Reports (Financial)

Each certified undercover operation is required to complete and maintain a monthly
financial review. At the beginning of each month, and after the CUFFS Administrator
has completed all CUFFS entries of financial transactions for the reporting period, each
operation must undergo a thorough financial review by field office managers.
The CUFFS Administrator will prepare financial review documentation with the
following information:
A. CUFFS Balance Sheet Report ending on the last day of the previous month;
B. CUFFS Income and Expenses by All Classes Statement from inception to the
last day of the previous month;
C. CUFFS Income and Expenses Itemized Report for the month being reported;
(Attach copies of approval documents and transaction documents for any
expenditures exceeding $2,499 (property) and $4,999 (non-property), or the
locally-established first-line supervisor approval level copies paid during the
current month); all applicable documentation related to petty cash funds on
hand (if applicable) and other reports as required;
D. budget reports for all outstanding appropriated investigative advances
received;
E. CUFFS Income and Expenses Report, reflecting the expenses incurred during
the same 6-month timeframe identified on the current 6-month Expenditure
Authorization Plan;
F. statement of current proceeds balance;
G. CUFFS Reconciliation Summary Report for each bank account; and
H. copies of the most recent bank statements for all accounts.

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The operation’s CUC Lead/Administrative GS will use the financial review
documentation to complete the Certified Undercover Operation Monthly Financial
Review Worksheet (Appendix E). This worksheet will include:
A. any findings requiring correction or further review, which will be noted in the
spaces provided; and
B. any corrective action taken, which will also be recorded.
The operation’s CUC Lead/Administrative GS will forward the completed Certified
Undercover Operation Monthly Financial Review Worksheet and documentation to the
SAC for certification and signature. SAC review and certification may not be delegated.
The signed financial review package and worksheet will be retained as part of the
operational files.
7.1.1 SAC Financial Reporting – Operation’s Financial Records to Headquarters
On a monthly basis, each certified undercover operation will submit a copy of its CUFFS
(QuickBooks back-up file) financial data file to the Undercover Operations Unit. The
data must be received by the Undercover Operations Unit by close of business on the 15th
of each month. If the 15th does not fall on a business day, the information must be
received by close of business on the last business day prior to the 15th of the month. The
following procedures will be used:
A. Pursuant to Section 7.1, “SAC Monthly Reports (Financial),” the CUFFS
Administrator will reconcile CUFFS for the month being reported.
B. A complete copy of the CUFFS data will be generated as a QuickBooks
backup file (.qbb). The file will be named in the format
“0XXXMMYYYY.qbb” where:
“0” (zero) is a constant;
“XXX” is the TECS CUC program code;
“MM” is the month being reported; and
“YYYY” is the year being reported.
C. The backup file will be transmitted to the Undercover Operations Unit by
inter-office email, as specified by the Undercover Operations Unit. If there
are questions relating to the transmittal of the file, the Undercover Operations
Unit should be contacted.
D. The Undercover Operations Unit will review the files for accuracy and
conformance to the policies and procedures contained in this Handbook. The
financial data will then be transmitted to the Dallas Finance Center by close of
business on the 22nd of each month.

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7.2

SAC Petty Cash Review

At least once every 3 months, the SAC will direct a supervisor (GS-14 or above) who is
not involved in the certified undercover operation to conduct an unannounced review and
reconciliation of the petty cash fund if one is maintained for the operation. At a
minimum, the cash count must be reconciled with:
A. the balance shown in the Petty Cash Daily Register;
B. all outstanding advances;
C. all documentation relating to expenditures made since the previous review;
and
D. all documentation relating to advances made by the operation to the fund.
The audit will also include:
A. a random sampling of not less that ten transactions to determine compliance
with record-keeping and approval policies and procedures (if less than ten
transactions were made in the period, a 100% review will be required); and
B. a review of the CUFFS records to determine if all Petty Cash Fund
transactions from the last 2 completed months have been properly posted.
A memorandum will document the findings of the Petty Cash audit, which will be
conducted in accordance with the current DHS Imprest Fund Manual of Procedures and
Instructions for Cashiers (Cashiers Manual), Office of Financial Management, Cash
Management Section, February 2003. This memorandum will be retained as part of the
operation’s records.
7.3

Headquarters Oversight

The DAD, ISD, the ADs, Operations (East and West), and DADs, Investigative Programs
and MSD, will ensure that sufficient Headquarters staff monitor the conduct of certified
undercover operations. They will gather and assess information to establish whether
operations are being conducted in accordance with:
A. existing policies and procedures;
B. appropriate operational techniques; and
C. current programmatic priorities.

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7.3.1

Headquarters Oversight – Programmatic Units

During the course of certified undercover operations, the designated Program
Manager/Operational Desk Officer(s) must monitor and review the progress of
operational cases. This will be accomplished principally through personal contact with
field managers and by the review of investigative activity reports. The Desk Officers are
charged with finding, coordinating, and resolving operational and programmatic issues
that arise in undercover operations.
7.3.2

Headquarters Oversight – Undercover Operations Unit

In close coordination with the appropriate OI Headquarters staff and field managers, the
Undercover Operations Unit will attempt to resolve any policy and procedural
inconsistencies they note, based on the requirements of this Handbook and related case
information. Policy or procedural issues that cannot be adequately resolved, or issues
that are determined to be operational in nature, will be referred to the appropriate
Headquarters Management.
7.3.2(1) National Program Managers - Undercover Operations Unit
The Program Managers in the Undercover Operations Unit will monitor OI undercover
activity for conformance to policies and procedures relating to undercover:
A. certification (statutory exemptions);
B. authorization (sensitive circumstances);
C. backstopping;
D. record-keeping (CUFFS);
E. training; and
F. ULC.
7.4

On-site Field Reviews of Certified Undercover Operations

The intent of the on-site certified undercover operation field review is to thoroughly
examine all operational and administrative aspects of an ongoing operation. The review
will be conducted by representatives from OI Headquarters and/or field managers. The
field review will include a comprehensive review of information provided to OI
Headquarters as part of the 6-month recertification packages and field interviews of
operational personnel.
Undercover operations will undergo a detailed on-site review every 1 or 2 years (see
Section 7.4.1, “Frequency of On-Site Field Reviews”) to determine whether:
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A. the operation is being conducted as authorized;
B. the stated goals of the operation are being adequately addressed;
C. the books and records are current and in accordance with the policy in this
Handbook; and
D. the operation is being properly administered and supported by SAC and
Headquarters management.
7.4.1

Frequency of On-site Field Reviews

Based on the results of an operation’s last Undercover Operations Unit Field Review,
OPR/MIU audit, and 6-month recertification proposal, the certified undercover
operations will be assessed as to whether it should be reviewed annually or biennially.
Operations will be placed into one of two categories:
A. Category 1 – annual field review required:
1) new certified operation; or
2) an operation that does not meet the criteria established for inclusion in
Category 2.
B. Category 2 – biennial field review:
1) An operation that has had an initial Undercover Operations Unit field
review and OPR/MIU audit.
2) Senior operational management are providing active oversight to ensure
policy compliance.
3) The financial books and records (CUFFS/QuickBooks) of the operation
have minor, if any, deficiencies.
4) Operational personnel are adhering to administrative policy specified in
this Handbook, including, but not limited to, the requirements for waivers,
inventories, property, undercover identification, and the use of operational
funds, travel requirements, leased vehicles, bank accounts, and monthly
reporting requirements.
5) The operation has minor, if any, operational CI deficiencies.
6) The operation has a solid investigative focus and high quality undercover
investigations are being conducted within the operation.

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7) The operation’s recertification paperwork prepared for the URC is
accurate, timely, and indicative of a well-maintained operation.
8) The operation has strong enforcement results during the previous year and
continues to show strong potential.
Note: The Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, will have the sole responsibility,
based on the above criteria, for determining the category placement for each certified
undercover operation.
The categorization of operations will not be construed as a positive or negative indicator,
but rather as a delineation of operations that require more or less of OI Headquarters’
input and oversight to ensure that every ICE certified undercover operation’s integrity is
maintained.
A SAC can, at any time, request the assistance of an Undercover Operations Unit Jump
Team to provide instruction to the individuals involved in the various aspects of the
undercover operation (see Section 8.5, “Undercover Operations Unit Jump Team”).
7.4.2

On-site Field Reviews (Interviews)

Operational personnel who will be interviewed during the on-site reviews include (but are
not limited to):
A. senior management (SAC, Associate SAC, ASAC, and/or RAC);
B. the CUC Administrative Overseer(s);
C. the CUC Lead/Administrative GS and CUC Program Manager;
D. each Case Agent;
E. each undercover agent;
F. the Undercover Liaison Coordinator (primary/secondary);
G. the AUSA responsible for the review of the recertification proposal and other
AUSAs who have prosecuted the operational investigations;
H. the CUFFS Administrator; and
I. the petty cash cashier, if applicable.

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7.4.3

On-site Field Reviews (Assessment)

The field review summary and evaluation will be used to provide SAC management with
an overview of the operation’s condition. The Field Review Assessment will be used as a
framework for all on-site reviews. The review process will cover:
A. a review of ROIs for the cases in the operation;
B. a review of the results of the previous 6 months towards the stated goals of the
operation;
C. a review of the use of statutory exemptions granted to the operation, as well as
the sensitive circumstances authorized;
D. a review of expenditures since the previous undercover operations field
review;
E. a review of the current and last 6-month expenditure authorization plan, as
well as an assessment of the proposed plan for the following 6-month period;
F. an assessment of the operational strategy proposed for the following 6
months;
G. interviews as specified in Section 7.4.2, “On-site Field Reviews (Interviews)”;
H. an assessment of operational assets to ensure compliance with policies (e.g.,
storefronts, warehouses, conveyances, etc.); and
I. identifying areas where OI Headquarters can provide additional support.
The preliminary results of the on-site review will be summarized and provided to the
SAC at the conclusion of the on-site review. After the review is finalized, the DAD, ISD,
will provide the SAC with a copy of the completed summary and evaluation, which will
become part of the operation’s permanent files.
It is incumbent upon the SAC to correct the issues identified for corrective action in the
summary and evaluation report and provide a written response of the corrective actions
within 45 days to the DAD, ISD, who will then forward it to the Undercover Operations
Unit and the appropriate Unit Chief(s), for review and concurrence.
The Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, will provide a verbal summary of each field
review report to the URC.

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7.4.4

Independent Audits of Certified Undercover Operations

Auditors from OPR/MIU will conduct a comprehensive independent audit of each
undercover operation every 2 years. This audit will be conducted according to OPR
policy and procedures. A copy of the final audit report will be retained as part of the
operation’s permanent records. Travel costs associated with such audits are a necessary
and reasonable expense of the operation.
7.5

Financial Reporting – Headquarters Internal

On a monthly basis, the Undercover Operations Unit will generate a financial report
containing the following data for each ongoing certified undercover operation:
A. the total amount of CUC-appropriated funds disbursed to the operation since
inception;
B. the total amount of CUC-appropriated funds remaining in the operation;
C. the total amount of proceeds generated by the operation since inception;
D. the total amount of proceeds remaining in the operation;
E. the total amount of “Recoverable Funds” disbursed to the operation since
inception;
F. the total amount of “Recoverable Funds” remaining with the operation;
G. the total amount of operational expenditures since inception (including CUCappropriated funds, proceeds, and all other funding sources); and
H. other data elements required by OI Headquarters management for effective
financial oversight.
7.6

Reporting Investigative Activities

Investigative case activities are the core of all undercover operations. They must be
documented in an ROI in a timely and comprehensive manner. ROIs are used by local
and OI Headquarters managers to:
A. ensure that investigative cases placed under the operation have undercover
activity or a direct nexus to undercover activity;
B. monitor the progress towards the objectives of the operation;
C. provide additional detail and explanation of the information contained in new
proposals, reauthorization requests, expansion requests, and reviews;
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D. support documentation of certain financial transactions; and
E. provide justification for operational POI payments to CIs.
Unless there are compelling reasons to do otherwise, ROIs should be set at level 3 (OI
viewing) access in TECS. If it is necessary to create level 4 (Social Security Number
(SSN) viewing) access to an ROI, the following OI Headquarters personnel must be
added to the access list:
A. the Unit Chief of the appropriate investigative programmatic Unit(s);
B. the Unit Chief, Undercover Operation Unit; and
C. the Program Manager(s) for the programmatic area responsible for the
investigation (there may be more than one Program Manager).
To ensure that all related information can be easily retrieved, the certified undercover
operation’s management must confirm that each case record related to an undercover
operation has the correct TECS CUC program code.
7.7

Use of TECS CUC Program Codes

7.7.1

Primary Case File (TECS)

Only one CUC program code shall be used for an undercover investigation’s primary
TECS case record (including collateral case records). The CUC program code for the
operation embodies the certification and authorization of the operation. This code
indicates that a particular investigation is certified and authorized within the noted
certified undercover operation. The code also indicates which operation is authorized to
generate and/or receive proceeds as well as fund any reasonable and necessary expenses
of the investigation.
7.7.2

Case Reports (ROI, Incident Reports)

When an investigation of one certified undercover operation receives investigative
assistance and/or support (i.e., transportation, pick-up activities, undercover meetings,
and other law enforcement support) from another certified undercover operation, the
assistance may be documented by inputting the assisting operation’s TECS CUC program
code on ROI and Incident Reports. This assistance will not be documented by inputting
additional CUC program codes on the primary TECS case record.
7.8

Property Inventories of Certified Undercover Operations

The CUC Administrative Overseer(s) will ensure that a complete annual physical
inventory of all items on the Property/Equipment Log for Undercover Operations

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(Appendix D) is conducted. This inventory will coincide with the annual ICE inventory
of capitalized property.
The following inventory procedure will be employed:
A. The SAC will assign an SA who is not involved in the operation to conduct
the inventory.
B. The CUC Lead/Administrative GS will provide a complete copy of the
Property/Equipment Log for Undercover Operations to the person assigned to
conduct the inventory.
C. Using a copy of the Property/Equipment Log for Undercover Operations, the
person taking the inventory will perform a physical inspection of each item
listed, and date and initial the “Inventory” column to indicate that the item has
been located.
D. Any discrepancies will be brought to the attention of the CUC
Lead/Administrative GS who will provide an explanation and make the
appropriate changes to the Property Files.
E. If, for any reason, an item cannot be physically inspected, the CUC
Lead/Administrative GS will provide a memorandum explaining the reason
and certifying its location and condition.
F. If any property is determined to be lost, stolen, or destroyed:
1) the SAC will notify OPR as appropriate;
2) the CUC Lead/Administrative GS will ensure that a Report of Property for
Survey is completed;
3) the procedures contained in the current ICE Personal Property
Management Handbook will be followed to determine final disposition;
4) the final disposition will be noted in the Property/Equipment Log for
Undercover Operations; and
5) a copy of the completed Report of Property for Survey will be placed in
the Property Use File.
The Annual Property Inventory memorandum will be attached to the annotated copy of
the Property/Equipment Log for Undercover Operations and any supporting
memorandum(s) signed by:
A. the individual who conducted the inventory;
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B. the CUC Lead/Administrative GS; and
C. the SAC or Deputy SAC.
The signed package will then be retained as part of the operation’s permanent records.
7.9

Undercover Identification Annual Inventory

Coinciding with the annual property inventory, the SAC must ensure that a complete
physical inventory of all undercover identification is conducted (see Section 9.1.6,
“Control of Personal Undercover Identification”). All undercover identification must be
inventoried and inspected. This is not limited to undercover agents assigned to a
particular certified undercover operation. Using the SAC’s undercover identification
files, the individual assigned to inventory covert identification documents must
personally ensure that the location of all undercover identification has been properly
documented. SAs who have been authorized to retain undercover identification shall
physically present it for inspection. A memorandum certifying the completion of the
inventory and listing any discrepancies found will be signed by:
A. the individual who conducted the inventory; and
B. the SAC or Deputy SAC.
The memorandum will then be retained as part of the primary ULC’s permanent office
records.
7.10

Managing Transgressions Within Certified Undercover Operations

Managers should assess certified undercover administrative and operational
transgressions as to whether they are operation-wide or compartmentalized (i.e., only
involving one programmatic area or investigative group) problems. Critical operationwide problems may result in the suspension of the operation. Critical compartmentalized
issues may result in the suspension of the offending program and/or group activity.
Appendix F is a Table of Transgressions and Corrective Actions establishing a uniform
and balanced approach to correcting problems within certified undercover operations.
The Table is for general guidance and is not meant to be all-inclusive, nor does it create
requirements related to the addressed issues.
As always, the Director of OI is the certifying and authorizing official for certified
undercover operations and, as such, is the official responsible for all corrective actions.
Additionally, any requirements related to the OPR notification are in no way affected by
this Table or the actions set forth therein.

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Chapter 8. TRAINING
The Undercover Operations Unit is responsible for the oversight, review, and
presentation of the following courses in support of undercover investigative activities:
A. Undercover Operatives School (UCOS);
B. Undercover Managers School (UCMS);
C. Undercover Liaison Coordinator School (ULCS);
D. CUFFS Administrator School (CUFFSAS);
E. Other Undercover Operations Unit-sponsored training, as needed; and
F. Other OI-sponsored undercover training.
Note: All training accreditations provided through the Undercover Operations Unit will
expire after 5 years, unless otherwise stated in this Handbook.
8.1

Undercover Operatives School

All ICE undercover operatives (including other agency law enforcement officers working
undercover assignments for OI) assigned to work in any undercover capacity, with the
exception of limited undercover duties, must have completed the OI UCOS. However,
under limited exigent circumstances, this requirement may be temporarily waived for a
period not to exceed 1 year with the approval of the DAD, ISD, as stated in Section 8.1.4,
“Waiver for Undercover Operatives School.”
8.1.1

Requirements

Prior to attending the UCOS, the undercover operative candidate must be vetted and
deemed suitable by the Primary Field ULC (see Section 10.3, “Selection Procedures for
Undercover Operatives (ULC’s Role)”). Additionally, the undercover operative
candidate must possess a minimum of 3 years of federal, state, or local criminal
investigative experience (patrol, correctional officer, and inspector duties do not count
towards this experience) prior to attending the UCOS.
8.1.2 Supervisors Acting in an Undercover Capacity
OI supervisors and managers shall not perform the function of an undercover operative,
except in situations of extraordinary circumstance and need. Additionally, OI supervisors
and managers shall not perform the function of undercover operative without written
approval from the DAD, ISD.

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8.1.3

Non-ICE Employees Acting in an Undercover Capacity

With the exception of OI personnel, no employee of a government and/or law
enforcement organization shall perform the functions of an undercover operative (except
limited) within an OI undercover investigation without written approval from both the
Director of OI or designee and a senior manager who is equivalent to a second-line
supervisor (ASAC or higher) from the organization where the operative is employed.
Attendance and successful completion of the UCOS shall constitute such approval.
8.1.4

Waiver for Undercover Operatives School

In order to obtain a training waiver to perform in an undercover role prior to attending the
UCOS, the SAC must submit a request to the DAD, ISD, that addresses the following
items:
A. The Primary Field ULC’s concurrence of suitability of the operative candidate
and a statement that the required psychological assessment has been
completed.
B. The overall law enforcement experience of the operative (operatives are
required to have a minimum of 3 years of criminal investigative experience),
including any previous undercover assignments and undercover training with
other agencies.
C. The operational necessity giving rise to the waiver request, including any
unique skills or knowledge the officer possesses or any unique relationships
he or she has with targets or informants.
D. The exigent circumstances which require that a waiver be granted before the
next available UCOS, including a statement regarding the lack of available
accredited undercover operatives.
E. The particular undercover role that the officer will be performing and the type
and frequency of undercover contacts that are anticipated. The memorandum
must specifically, and in detail, address what the undercover operative will be
doing in the undercover capacity that he or she will be assuming.
After a waiver is granted, the officer will be scheduled to attend the next available
UCOS. As always, the SAC will ensure that every effort is made to ensure the physical
and emotional safety of the undercover operative while he or she is performing in an
undercover capacity.
Note: For case-specific waivers where there is no intention of having the SA attend the
UCOS, the DAD, ISD, may waive the requirement for the psychological assessment.

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8.1.5

Exemption for Equivalent Training for Other Federal and State Agency
Undercover Operatives

The Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, may exempt in writing another law
enforcement agency’s undercover operatives from the requirement to attend the UCOS
based on the following criteria:
A. The undercover operative’s agency must provide a comparable UCOS.
B. The undercover operative’s agency must provide a comparable undercover
psychological evaluation.
C. The undercover operative must have attended and successfully completed his
or her agency’s undercover training school and passed his or her agency’s
undercover operative psychological evaluation.
D. The other law enforcement agency’s undercover operative must be a sworn
officer of that agency and be working with OI on an ICE undercover
investigation.
8.1.6

Failure to Become Accredited

Should an operative candidate fail to complete the UCOS in two attempts, that candidate
shall no longer be considered for accreditation as an ICE undercover operative. If the
operative candidate is not accredited at the first UCOS, the Primary Field ULC will be
responsible for briefing SAC management as to the reason(s). After failing to complete
the first UCOS, the candidate may not be renominated for a second UCOS prior to 12
months from the notice date of the failed accreditation attempt, which is the day the
candidate is notified by the National ULC. If renomination is anticipated, the operative
candidate, beginning with the date of notification, will be monitored every 30 days by a
Field ULC to determine if progress has been made to correct the issues outlined by the
National ULC. Additional psychological testing of the undercover operative candidate
will not be required.
Upon renomination of an operative candidate, the National ULC will be provided
documented observed improvements in the candidate’s suitability. The operative
candidate may improve his or her suitability by working with experienced, veteran
accredited operatives.
8.2

Undercover Managers School

The following personnel are required to attend the UCMS:
A. CUC Administrative Overseer(s);
B. CUC Lead/Administrative GS; and
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C. CUC Program Manager.
8.2.1

Waiver for Undercover Managers School

The Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, may approve a temporary waiver (not to
exceed 1 year) from this training requirement.
8.3

Undercover Liaison Coordinator School

Completion of the ULCS is required prior to assuming the duties of Primary and/or
Secondary Field ULC.
8.3.1

Requirements

Prior to attending the ULCS, the candidate must be vetted and deemed suitable by the
Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit. At a minimum, the candidate must possess a
minimum of 5 years of federal, state, or local criminal investigative experience (patrol,
correctional officer, and inspector duties do NOT count towards this experience) and
have successfully completed the UCOS and have been accredited as an undercover
operative. Additional requirements are documented in Section 10.2.1, “Primary/
Secondary Field ULC – Prerequisites”.
Note: There will be no waiver of these requirements.
8.4

CUFFS Administrator School

Completion of the CUFFSAS is required prior to assuming the duties of a CUFFS
Administrator.
8.4.1 Waiver for CUFFS Administrator School
A temporary waiver (until the next available CUFFSAS) of this training requirement may
be issued by the DAD, ISD, under the following conditions:
A. The individual assuming the CUFFS Administrator responsibilities has a
general accounting background and/or demonstrates accounting knowledge.
B. There is an exigent need for the individual to take over as CUFFS
Administrator prior to attending the CUFFSAS.
8.5

Undercover Operations Unit Jump Team

To ensure compliance with the provisions of this Handbook, a SAC may request the
assistance of an Undercover Operations Unit Jump Team to provide instruction to the
personnel involved in the various aspects of a certified undercover operation.

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The request for the Undercover Operations Unit Jump Team to travel to the site of the
operation may be made at any time by sending a memorandum to the DAD, ISD. Upon
approval of the request, the Undercover Operations Unit, in conjunction with the
appropriate Headquarters managers, will assemble a team of managers who have
experience in undercover operations and are knowledgeable about undercover policies,
procedures, and record-keeping.
The SAC memorandum requesting the Undercover Operations Unit Jump Team should
include the:
A. operation’s name and certification date;
B. CUC Lead/Administrative GS’s name and contact telephone numbers; and
C. nature of the assistance required and specific area(s) of the operation on which
the Undercover Operations Unit Jump Team should focus its attention (i.e.,
record-keeping, policy, undercover activity).
Note: The use of operational funds for the travel expenses of an Undercover Operations
Unit Jump Team is considered a necessary and reasonable expense of the operation.

Chapter 9. UNDERCOVER IDENTIFICATION AND BACKSTOPPING
Obtaining credible undercover identification is crucial to establishing and maintaining an
effective undercover identity. Ultimately, ICE is accountable for the actions of all its
employees and must maintain accurate records of any aliases and/or false identities issued
and/or used. This Chapter provides policies and procedures for the issuance and control
of undercover identification. The provisions of this Chapter apply to all OI employees
and to all federal, state, and local law enforcement officers (or other persons) who obtain
undercover identification through OI.
Note: Undercover operatives should be aware that advances in technology have eroded
the ability of law enforcement to fully backstop undercover operatives and undercover
businesses. It is incumbent on all undercover operatives and operational personnel to
understand the limitations of their backstopping and to have contingency plans in place
for situations when investigative targets question alias information.
9.1

Personal Undercover Identification

Undercover (or alias) identification normally falls into two categories: federally-issued
and state-issued identification. Additionally, alias identification could potentially be
obtained from other sources such as private corporations and foreign governments.
All undercover identification obtained through the authority of OI is OI property and
must be relinquished to the SAC or the Undercover Operations Unit upon request.
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At any time, the SAC or the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, may require an
agent to relinquish any or all of his or her issued personal undercover identification. The
SAC or the Undercover Operations Unit will return all such items to the original issuer as
applicable.
9.1.1

Who May Obtain Personal Undercover Identification

Given the proper approval, all ICE employees and federal, state, and local law
enforcement officers (or other persons) working directly with ICE OI may obtain
undercover identification through the OI processes. The process to be followed differs
based on various factors such as the type of identification requested, the individual who
will use the identification, and the purpose of the alias identification.
9.1.1(1) Undercover Identification for CIs/Cooperating Defendants
Fictitious identification will be issued only to a CI/Cooperating Defendant on a case-bycase basis with the written approval of the DAD, ISD. SAC requests for CI/Cooperating
Defendant alias identification will require a memorandum addressed to the DAD, ISD,
through the Unit Chief, ISU, and the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit. The
request must detail the need for and the specific use of the fictitious identification will be
needed, the time frame when it will be needed, and the security measures to be used to
ensure that the fictitious identification is not used improperly.
9.1.2

Federally-Issued Identification

All federally-issued undercover identification/backstopping documentation shall be
obtained through the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit. No requests for federallyissued personal undercover identification will be approved unless the SA has attended the
UCOS or is in possession of a valid exempt-from-training waiver signed by the DAD,
ISD. SAC Primary ULCs are the local points of contact for information relating to all
undercover identification and backstopping. The SAC-designated ASAC or higher
official is responsible for any classified program and for providing coordination between
the SAC and OI Headquarters. Types of available federally-issued undercover or
fictitious identification include, but are not limited to, the following:
A. SSNs (The use of SSNs that are not issued through or with the written
concurrence of the Undercover Operations Unit is strictly prohibited. );
B. CBP Brokers Licenses;
C. FAA pilot and medical certificates;
D. U.S. Coast Guard licenses and certifications;
E. immigration documents;

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F. personal credit cards;
G. credit histories; and
H. classified programs documents.
Licenses and certificates requiring technical skill and/or testing to receive the license or
certificate (e.g., FAA pilot and U.S. Coast Guard licenses) may be obtained only by
individuals who actually possess the specific license and/or certificate. For example, an
alias name FAA pilot’s license will be issued only to an agent who will act in an
undercover capacity if that agent is in fact an FAA-licensed pilot.
The use of SSNs that are not issued through or with the written concurrence of the
Undercover Operations Unit is strictly prohibited. The use of fictitious SSNs that are not
issued by the Social Security Administration can have very serious consequences. Such
numbers may be assigned to private individuals and there can be long-term effects on
credit ratings, individual reputations, and the security of an operation.
All requests for personal undercover federally-issued identification shall be initiated
through a SAC memo directed to the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, clearly
stating the particular type of identification requested. The request shall include all
completed applicable forms, agreements, and applications required by the issuing agency.
These forms/applications shall be original and contain only alias information. The
request shall also include copies of the individual’s bona fide license and/or certificate, as
applicable. The Undercover Operations Unit will provide specific request requirements
for each type of identification. Federally-issued identification must be maintained in
accordance with the controls listed in Section 9.1.6, “Control of Personal Undercover
Identification.”
Other types of specialized identification are available but are governed by classified
programs and cannot be addressed in this Handbook. The Undercover Operations Unit
should be contacted through the proper secure channels regarding these programs.
9.1.3

State-Issued Identification

All alias identification issued by a state authority (e.g., driver’s licenses or state employee
identification) is the responsibility of the appropriate SAC and must be authorized and
obtained by the SAC. Local SAC procedures will be established for each state or
territory as appropriate. State-issued identification must be maintained in accordance
with the controls listed in Section 9.1.6, “Control of Personal Undercover Identification.”
9.1.4

Foreign Government-Issued Identification

No alias identification available from any foreign government will be issued without the
prior written approval of the DAD, ISD, and the Director of OIA. Any such request will
be routed through the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, and will be coordinated
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with OIA and the appropriate ICE Attaché (1811 series). Foreign government-issued
identification must be maintained in accordance with the controls listed in Section 9.1.6,
“Control of Personal Undercover Identification.”
Note: Foreign documents for use as “flash” only may be available from the Forensic
Document Laboratory by request through the Undercover Operations Unit.
9.1.5

Private Business-Issued Identification

All alias identification issued by a private business authority (e.g., phone or delivery
company) is the responsibility of the appropriate SAC and must be authorized by the
SAC. Local SAC procedures will be established for private business-issued alias
identification, as appropriate. Private business-issued identification must be maintained
in accordance with the controls listed in Section 9.1.6, “Control of Personal Undercover
Identification.”
9.1.6

Control of Personal Undercover Identification

All undercover identification obtained through OI authority is OI property and subject to
the following controls:
A. All undercover identification issued or obtained will have written SAC
approval and, as needed, OI Headquarters written approval. The approval(s)
must be maintained in the SAC Undercover Identification File.
B. Long-term retention/personal possession (more than 72 hours) of undercover
identification by an agent must be approved by the SAC in a memorandum to
the file that specifically lists the piece(s) of identification and provides
justification for the retention of the identification. Undercover identification
that is not needed for immediate undercover activity (within 72 hours) shall be
retained by the SAC in a locked and secure file cabinet (normally by the
agent’s GS) until such time as the identification is required for undercover
activity.
C. Undercover identities and documents shall be considered law enforcement
sensitive and shall be revealed only on a need-to-know basis only.
D. A SAC memorandum identifying all undercover identification and the account
numbers of all personal bank and credit card accounts (see Section 9.2,
“Maintaining a Personal Financial History”) opened in fictitious names will be
retained in the SAC Undercover Identification File and a copy will be
forwarded to the Undercover Operations Unit. The Undercover Operations
Unit will be responsible for maintaining a master file of aliases and fictitious
bank and credit card accounts issued to agents in the field.

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E. A SAC Undercover Identification File will be established for each SA who is
issued undercover identification. The file will be secured in a locked file
cabinet at all times and will contain:
1) a complete list of all undercover identification issued to the SA;
2) a complete list of account numbers of all personal bank and personal credit
card accounts;
3) undercover identification approval memoranda from the SAC and
Headquarters, as applicable;
4) personal possession retention authorization memoranda, as applicable;
5) photocopies of all undercover identification; and
6) all original pieces of identification not currently being utilized or
authorized for personal possession and/or retention.
F. Any undercover document issued pursuant to any classified program is to be
used for official business only. Any compromise or loss must be immediately
reported verbally to the SAC and the SAC must immediately notify the
Undercover Operations Unit verbally to receive instructions on what other
actions must be taken subsequent to the loss. There will be no
communications made to other agencies, including the issuing agency, by any
personnel outside the Undercover Operations Unit.
G. Any undercover document issued pursuant to any classified program must be
immediately returned, using an appropriate method, by the SAC to the
Undercover Operations Unit, if an agent transfers to another SAC office,
separates from ICE, takes extended leave, or does not have an immediate
operational need for the document. Upon notification and return of the
document, the Undercover Operations Unit will determine whether the
document will be reissued to another SAC office, stored at Headquarters, or
liquidated.
H. If an agent transfers to another OI office, the SAC losing the agent is
responsible for properly sending the undercover identification, except
identification issued pursuant to any classified program, to the SAC gaining
the agent. The SAC transferring the undercover identification is also
responsible for notifying the Undercover Operations Unit via a SAC
memorandum as to which identification is being transferred to the receiving
office and, if applicable, which is being returned to the issuer. Photocopies of
all undercover documents being transferred shall be provided to the
Undercover Operations Unit.

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I. If an agent is separated from ICE, all undercover identification documents and
related instructional material will be collected by the SAC as accountable
property. Any document issued pursuant to a Headquarters program shall be
returned to the Undercover Operations Unit within 30 days. All other alias
documents obtained directly from an issuing agency within a state or other
jurisdiction (e.g., driver’s licenses, locally-obtained credit cards) must be
returned to such agency by the SAC within 30 days or earlier if required by
the issuing agency.
J. If fictitious identification is requested for an individual who is not an OI SA,
requests must be routed through the appropriate OI SAC. For federally-issued
undercover identification, requests will be routed to the Undercover
Operations Unit. The SAC will maintain any such issued identification in
accordance with the procedures specified above.
9.2

Maintaining a Personal Financial History

The advent of relatively easy automated access to the financial records of individuals
makes it extremely difficult for an undercover identity to withstand the scrutiny of
subjects who may seek to confirm an operative’s undercover representations. One of the
features of a cover identity is a credible financial history. Therefore, OI policy includes
procedures where, on a restricted basis, an agent can maintain individual (personal) bank
accounts and credit cards under an alias identity.
As an extension of an alias identity, these bank accounts and credit cards are OI property
and must be immediately relinquished at the request of the SAC or the Unit Chief,
Undercover Operations Unit.
9.2.1

Individual (Personal) Undercover Bank Accounts

To facilitate and maintain an undercover personal financial history, an agent may be
authorized to establish and maintain a personal bank account in his or her alias identity.
Individual (personal) undercover bank accounts are not directly associated with a
certified undercover operation but with the undercover agent. These accounts will exist
only under the following conditions:
A. Prior written approval must be obtained from the SAC and kept on file in the
SAC Undercover Identification File (this approval will state that the account
is authorized by OI and therefore must be closed at the request of OI).
B. All bank accounts shall be non-interest bearing to avoid tax complications.
C. While the account is not being used in direct support of a certified undercover
operation, only the employee’s personal (non-government) funds will be
utilized. Personal transactions will be conducted for the sole purpose of
maintaining the account and will not be more than needed to keep the account
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active. U.S. Government funds may not be deposited into the account (unless
statutory exemptions of an OI certified undercover operation are being
utilized).
D. Sufficient personal funds must be deposited prior to making a personal
transaction.
E. Government funds may not be used to reimburse an operative for penalties
charged on the account, unless the penalty charged is beyond the control of
the agent and the payment is authorized by the SAC in writing.
F. An agent may request an advance of CUC funds to be deposited into the
personal undercover bank account only to offset operational expenses in direct
support of a certified undercover operation.
G. Only personal and U.S. Government funds from advances for authorized
undercover activity associated with a certified undercover operation may be
deposited into these accounts.
H. All expenditures of operational funds must be approved in advance by the
appropriate undercover operation manager on the CUFFS Expense/Advance
Approval Form (Appendix B).
I. Government funds may be used to reimburse normal bank maintenance fees.
J. Copies of monthly bank statements, supporting documents, cancelled checks,
and receipts connected or related to expenditures or the use of funds of a
certified undercover operation must be recorded in CUFFS. These documents
must be reconciled and remain with that operation’s books and records. The
records must be annotated with the word “Personal” to indicate a personal
transaction or a Case Management case number to indicate an operational
transaction.
K. Copies of each monthly bank statement shall be supplied to and retained by
the SA’s first-line supervisor. The records must be annotated with the word
“Personal” to indicate a personal transaction or a Case Management case
number to indicate an operational transaction. First-line supervisors will
review the records to ensure compliance with this policy and to protect against
misuse.
L. An undercover bank account may not be used for any personal or nongovernment transactions that would be unbecoming or cast ICE in an
unfavorable light.

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The aforementioned requirements apply to all ICE employees and federal, state, and local
law enforcement officers (or other persons) working directly with OI who obtain personal
undercover bank accounts through ICE OI.
9.2.2

Individual (Personal) Undercover Credit Cards

To facilitate and maintain an undercover personal financial history, an agent may be
authorized to establish and maintain a credit card in his or her alias identity. Individual
personal undercover credit cards are not directly associated with a certified undercover
operation but with the undercover agent. These undercover credit card accounts will
exist only under the following conditions:
A. Prior written approval must be obtained from the SAC and kept on file in the
SAC Undercover Identification File (this approval will contain the instruction
that the account is authorized by OI and therefore must be closed at the
request of OI).
B. If an agent is not currently working in an undercover capacity, but is
reasonably expected to resume undercover work at a later time, he or she may
use the account for personal transactions for the sole purpose of maintaining
an active account. Officers may use undercover credit card accounts for
personal transactions of not more than $100 per month. The Unit Chief,
Undercover Operations Unit, may authorize additional charges if required and
requested by the SAC. Only personal (non-government) funds shall be used
to pay the charges that are personal and not expenses of the government.
C. All accounts must remain current and in good standing with the issuing
financial institution at all times.
D. Government funds may not be used to reimburse an operative for interest
charged on the account (including late fees), unless the fee charged is beyond
the control of the officer and the payment is authorized in writing by the SAC.
E. Government funds may be used to reimburse an agent for normal account
maintenance fees.
F. Except under exigent circumstances, operational transactions must be
approved in advance in accordance with normal expense authorization
guidelines.
G. Copies of monthly account statements, supporting documents, and receipts
connected or related to a certified undercover operation must be recorded in
CUFFS. These documents must be reconciled and remain with that
operation’s books and records. The records must be annotated with the word
“Personal” to indicate a personal transaction or a Case Management case
number to indicate an operational transaction.
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H. Copies of each monthly account statement shall be supplied to and retained by
the agent’s first-line supervisor. The records must be annotated with the word
“Personal” to indicate a personal transaction or a Case Management case
number to indicate a Government transaction. First-line supervisors will
review the statements on a monthly basis to ensure compliance with this
policy and to protect against misuse.
I. An undercover credit card account may not be used for any personal or nongovernment transactions that would be unbecoming or cast ICE in an
unfavorable light.
The aforementioned requirements apply to all ICE employees and federal, state, and local
law enforcement officers (or other persons) working directly with OI who obtain personal
undercover credit card accounts through ICE OI.
Note: With appropriate approval, personal undercover credit cards may be obtained
through the SAC or through the Undercover Operations Unit.
Note: The use of an individual (personal) undercover credit card in direct support of a
certified undercover operation is an action under the statutory exemptions. For
additional information, see Section 6.13, “Use of Undercover Credit Cards in Certified
Undercover Operations.”
9.3

Corporate Backstopping

Federally-issued undercover identification/backstopping for undercover proprietary
businesses and shell companies can be obtained through the Undercover Operations Unit.
Types of available corporate identification/backstopping include, but are not limited to,
the following:
A. Employer Identification Numbers (EINs) (Note: All EINs must be obtained
through the Undercover Operations Unit in order to avoid tax issues with the
Internal Revenue Service);
B. Dun and Bradstreet reports;
C. Department of Transportation/Motor Carrier numbers;
D. Department of Defense Trade Compliance Registration numbers;
E. Office of Foreign Asset Control License;
F. FAA airplane registration number/certificates;
G. U.S. Coast Guard marine identification; and

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H. business credit cards.
Note: Business credit cards are for the sole use of a certified undercover operation. For
additional information, see Section 6.13, “Use of Undercover Credit Cards in Certified
Undercover Operations.”
Note: Certain undercover businesses can be backstopped with fictitious and/or
legitimate private insurance. For additional information, see Section 3.9, “The Use of
Private Insurance Within Certified Undercover Operations.”
9.3.1

Using Multiple Undercover Businesses

Undercover operations are authorized to establish proprietary businesses necessary to
accomplish the mission. If using an existing covert proprietary business to secure
required materials or services would jeopardize the security of the operation, additional
proprietary businesses may be established to engage in these transactions. For example,
if the lease of vehicles were necessary for surveillance to support an investigation that
had a small undercover company purporting to be an established exporter, it may be
unrealistic for a small company to lease six cars. Therefore, additional unrelated
company(s) and associated covert bank account(s) may be established to execute the
necessary leases and conceal the involvement of the U.S. Government.
Additionally, expenses related to having “standby” businesses set up and available for
immediate use by the operation is considered necessary and reasonable.

Chapter 10. UNDERCOVER LIAISON COORDINATOR PROGRAM
The ULC Program is for the benefit of personnel directly involved in undercover activity.
This Chapter outlines the assessment, monitoring and, if necessary, treatment for
undercover operatives. This Chapter also delineates the role of the ULC in the planning,
preparation, and execution of undercover activity. The ULC Program exists to protect
the safety and well-being of each undercover agent as well as to protect ICE from
liability issues that may arise from undercover activity. Additional roles and
responsibilities may be promulgated by the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, as
required, to ensure the effectiveness of the program.
Note: In light of the sensitive nature of the ULC Program, all personal information of
personnel involved in the ULC Program will be treated with the utmost confidentiality
and released to others only on a need-to-know basis. However, violations of policy or
law MUST be disclosed to management. Release of personal information gathered as
part of this program, except as required for the administration of the ULC Program, is
strictly prohibited and will be done only with the written approval of each of the
following: the National ULC; ICE Counsel; and the Unit Chief, Information Disclosure
Unit, MSD.

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10.1

National ULC

The National ULC is the Program Manager in the Undercover Operations Unit with the
responsibility to:
A. ensure proper implementation, usage, and coordination of the ULC Program;
B. verify that the Primary and Secondary Field ULC nominees possess the
requisite qualification standards outlined in this Handbook; and
C. arbitrate any conflicting opinions regarding agent suitability for undercover
accreditation between field ULCs and the SAC.
The National ULC may select a Field ULC outside the referring ULC’s AOR to assist in
resolving conflicts on the assessment of the suitability of operative candidates.
10.2

Primary/Secondary Field ULC

SACs will nominate Field ULCs within their AOR. The selection and nomination shall
be documented via memorandum from the SAC to the Unit Chief, Undercover
Operations Unit. The Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, will ensure that each
nominee is vetted and has the requisite experience prior to attending the ULCS. The
SAC, in consultation with the Primary Field ULC, will nominate Secondary Field ULCs
to assist the Primary Field ULC in performing the ULC duties. The appointment of
Secondary Field ULCs may be beneficial for RAC offices, satellite offices, or large SAC
offices.
Primary and Secondary Field ULC positions are considered collateral duties.
Note: For instances in which the ULC is required to travel for ULC-related duties, the
SAC will pay all expenses related to the travel. In instances where the duties relate
directly to an ongoing certified operation, these expenses may be paid by that operation.
10.2.1 Primary/Secondary Field ULC – Prerequisites
The requirements for selection and accreditation for Primary and Secondary ULCs are as
follows:
A. The Primary Field ULC shall:
1) be a non-supervisory grade GS-13/14 OI SA;
2) have successfully completed the OI UCOS and ULCS and have been
accredited as an undercover operative;

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3) have conducted substantial undercover work with positive results (i.e.,
significant investigations, arrests, indictments, or convictions) supported
by investigative documentation; and
4) have at least 5 years of criminal investigative experience.
B. The Secondary Field ULC shall:
1) be a non-supervisory grade GS-13/14 OI SA;
2) have successfully completed the OI UCOS, ULCS, and have been
accredited as an undercover operative; and
3) have at least 5 years of criminal investigative experience.
10.2.2 ULC Responsibilities
The Primary Field ULC’s responsibilities are to:
A. oversee the activities of the Secondary Field ULC as they relate to the ULC
Program;
B. conduct pre-screening interviews and administer psychological assessments
(in coordination with the undercover contract psychologist) of undercover
operative candidates to assess suitability to conduct undercover duties;
C. conduct post-graduation briefings with the undercover operative once the
operative has completed the UCOS and has been accredited;
D. provide a viable peer support resource for undercover operations and
operatives regarding the planning, strategy, and execution of undercover
investigations;
E. assist senior management in assigning operatives to the level consistent with
their ability and training (i.e., secondary undercover role with experienced
primary undercover operative, primary undercover role with primary
undercover support, or primary undercover role;
F. coordinate and track the progression of accredited undercover operatives
through the levels of undercover activity (i.e., secondary undercover role with
experienced primary undercover operative, primary undercover role with
primary undercover support, or primary undercover role);
G. ensure that each accredited undercover operative (and operative candidate on
a training waiver) is assigned to a ULC (Primary or Secondary);

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H. monitor and mentor operatives in performing undercover duties;
I. monitor the progress of newly-assigned undercover operatives in certified
undercover operations or task forces (i.e., HIDTA, Joint Terrorism Task
Force, etc.), and serve as liaison between the operative, SAC management,
and task force management;
J. contact the National ULC to initiate psychological services when an operative
is experiencing psychological or health problems. The contract psychologist
should telephonically contact the affected operative within 4 hours of notice
of an operative experiencing problems; if necessary, the psychologist or a
member of his or her network will be dispatched to the affected operative
within 48 hours for a face-to-face consultation.
K. consult with SAC managers and operatives regarding issues related to officer
safety and evidentiary development as they pertain to undercover activities;
L. immediately report to management any instances where criminal or selfdestructive activity is discovered;
M. ensure that, at a minimum, semi-annual interviews are conducted with each
accredited undercover operative to monitor the well-being of the operative;
N. administer psychological re-testing (in coordination with the undercover
contract psychologist) every 5 years to active accredited operatives (re-testing
will be similar to that of new operative candidates);
O. be the local informational source regarding OI Headquarters procedures for
requesting any undercover identification and backstopping; and
P. maintain a file for each accredited undercover operative (and operative
candidate) that shall contain:
1) documentation related to the operative’s experience, skills, completion of
UCOS, waivers, and concurrence letter (when the operative is a non-ICE
law enforcement officer);
2) copies of all undercover identification issued to the operative; and
3) biographical inventory questionnaire, pre-screening interview information,
psychological testing results, semi-annual evaluations by the ULC, and
any other pertinent documentation related to the operative.
Secondary Field ULCs perform duties under the guidance of the Primary ULCs,
including administering psychological testing. The Secondary ULC will provide all

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information, documentation, and file copies pertaining to operative candidates and
accredited operatives to the Primary ULC.
10.3

Selection Procedures for Undercover Operatives (ULC’s Role)

The Primary Field ULC shall assist SAC management in examining the needs of an
investigation/operation and in determining who, including existing accredited undercover
operatives and new operatives, would be best suited to conduct undercover assignments.
When an OI SA (including TFO) is considered for undercover operative accreditation,
the following procedures apply:
A. The Primary Field ULC will conduct a pre-screening interview, as defined by
the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, of the undercover operative
candidate to assess suitability to conduct undercover duties. A biographical
inventory questionnaire will be completed to assist in the determination of
suitability. The Primary Field ULC will consult with the candidate’s
supervisor as to the results of the pre-screening interview. This pre-screening
process must take place prior to submitting the candidate’s name to the SAC
Field Training Officer and/or the Undercover Operations Unit.
B. If a new operative is determined to be preliminarily suitable, the Primary Field
ULC will conduct a formal suitability assessment in coordination with the
undercover contract psychologist. The candidate will be administered
standardized psychological tests under prescribed controlled conditions (e.g.,
time constraints, basic instructions, location of testing, etc.). Tests include the
Minnesota Multi-Phasic Inventory, Fundamental Interpersonal Relations
Orientation-Behavior, and/or Sixteen Personality Factor Test.
C. The ICE undercover contract psychologist will evaluate the psychological
test(s) and interview the operative candidate during the UCOS or before. The
contract psychologist will provide a full written psychological assessment to
the Primary Field ULC regarding the operative candidate’s suitability for
undercover assignments.
Note: If an accredited operative has not conducted undercover duties for a period of 5
years or more, the operative shall be placed in an inactive status. In such cases, should
an agent resume undercover responsibilities, that agent will be required to repeat the
ULC screening and training process (including the UCOS) for new undercover operative
candidates.
Note: If an undercover operative contacts an ICE contract psychologist as a result of a
personal/professional stressor, the operative is protected from any adverse consequences
affecting background clearances and employment-related matters germane to the
operative’s official duties. It is incumbent upon the operative, as a matter of professional
responsibility to the undercover operation or investigation, to report any stressor(s) that
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the operative is experiencing so as not to jeopardize the integrity of the ongoing
investigation or place other personnel in harm’s way.
10.3.1 Exempt from Training Waiver for Operative Candidates
Once the selection of a potential undercover operative is made, that individual shall be
required to attend the next available UCOS. In exigent instances (including resource
limitations) where the undercover operative candidate is required to conduct undercover
activity requiring accreditation prior to attending the UCOS, the SAC shall request an
exempt-from-training waiver from the Director of OI. However, before the waiver
request is made, the Primary Field ULC shall have already administered the
aforementioned psychological assessment and, additionally, the contract psychologist
will have conducted a telephonic interview. The primary Field ULC will monitor
undercover candidates possessing an exempt-from-training waiver on a monthly basis
until accreditation is obtained through the UCOS.
Note: For a case-specific waiver, where there is no intention to have the undercover
operative attend the UCOS, the requirement for the psychological assessment evaluation
may be waived. However, the pre-screening selection interview must be completed.

Chapter 11. TRAUMATIC INCIDENT RESPONSE (PSYCHOLOGICAL
SERVICES)
Managers of undercover investigations and/or operations should have an action plan for
responding to the emergency requirements of a traumatic incident, as well as the
psychological aftermath. Should a traumatic incident occur during an undercover
assignment, such as a shooting or other incident threatening life or limb, the SAC should
notify the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, as soon as possible. The Unit Chief,
Undercover Operations Unit, will ensure that the services of the undercover contract
psychologist are made available to provide support to any affected undercover operative,
as appropriate. Additionally, the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit, will ensure
coordination with the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) in order to facilitate support
for other OI employees and/or family members affected by the incident.
11.1

ULC Assistance

The ULC Program is responsible for the well-being of undercover operatives. As such,
in situations involving a traumatic incident during an undercover assignment, the
National ULC will provide assistance to the Primary Field ULC in the coordination of
any services required of the undercover contract psychologist. The ULCs will provide
assistance and support as required (see Chapter 10, “Undercover Liaison Coordinator
Program”).

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11.1.1 Contract Psychologist
The services of the Undercover Operation Unit’s contract psychologist are available only
to undercover operatives and other individuals approved by the DAD, ISD. When
responding to a traumatic incident, the Undercover Operation Unit’s contract
psychologist will not seek to analyze the incident, but will provide only psychological
assistance to designated involved individuals.
Participation in traumatic incident debriefings and follow-up interviews provided by the
Undercover Operation Unit’s contract psychologist is not mandatory. These services are
provided for the safety and well-being of the undercover operative and participation is
voluntary.
11.2

Employee Assistance Program

The EAP offers confidential, short-term counseling, information, referral, and other
social services to help ICE employees cope with alcoholism/substance abuse; death of a
family member or co-worker; domestic abuse; emotional concerns; interoffice conflicts;
managing debt; marital/family conflict; sexual harassment; stress management; and
traumatic experiences.
The EAP Headquarters is in Washington, D.C., and can be reached at 1-800-222-0364.
EAP services are available throughout the country. EAP counselors are licensed in the
state in which they practice. Many of these counselors specialize in working with law
enforcement officers and their families.
11.2.1 Use of the EAP to Cope with Traumatic Incidents
If there is an operational traumatic event, an EAP counselor can debrief ICE employees
and family members to prevent or minimize psychological injury. For EAP purposes,
any emotionally charged event that is considered unusual may be considered a traumatic
incident. Licensed counselors with debriefing experience conduct EAP debriefings.
Debriefings are CONFIDENTIAL! Traumatic events may also affect family members,
especially young children. For this reason, debriefings are available to family members.
11.2.2 EAP Assistance for Managers
An EAP goal is to help managers help their employees. ICE managers can call and talk
to an EAP counselor to find out what options are available to help an employee. ICE
managers may also request one of many professional training courses available to help
with work, health, and wellness-related issues.

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Chapter 12. UNDERCOVER ACTIVITY IN FOREIGN COUNTRIES
This Chapter encompasses certified undercover operations and investigations that include
undercover activity in a foreign country by an OI SA, ICE TFO, or a CI (working under
the immediate direction and control of an OI SA or ICE TFO).
Undercover activities in foreign countries must have the concurrence of, and be
coordinated through, the appropriate ICE Attaché (1811 series) in order to ensure
compliance with 22 U.S.C. § 3927(b), “Chief of Mission – notice to.” The ICE Attaché
(1811 series) has final field authority for undercover investigative activity within his or
her AOR.
ICE undercover activities in foreign countries that may violate foreign law require special
consideration and attention. The ICE Attaché (1811 series) is responsible for
determining the appropriate course of action in these situations. However, OI personnel
should be aware that there are potential civil and criminal liabilities under foreign
law that may arise from undercover activities taking place in foreign countries.
Note: This Handbook does not supersede or take the place of any requirements by ICE
policy related to activities conducted by ICE personnel in foreign countries.
12.1

Domestic Undercover Investigations Involving Undercover Activity in
Foreign Locations
A. Undercover investigations (whether or not conducted as part of a certified
undercover operation) involving undercover activity in a foreign location must
have the concurrence of the appropriate ICE Attaché (1811 series) prior to the
start of any undercover activity in that foreign location. Concurrence may be
obtained in writing or verbally. If the concurrence is verbal, it shall be
documented, with the date, time, and name of the official giving the
concurrence, on a Case Chronology and Review Sheet (ICE Form 73-004).
B. All undercover investigative reports pertinent to an ICE Attaché’s (1811
series) AOR will be copied and forwarded to that Attaché (1811 series) via
distribution in Case Management or other appropriate means.
C. While in a foreign country on official business, ICE SAs, ICE TFOs or CIs
working under the immediate direction and control of an OI SA or ICE TFO
will be under the supervision of the appropriate ICE Attaché (1811 series).

12.2

Certified Undercover Operations Conducted in Foreign Locations
A. Certified undercover operations conducted in foreign locations must adhere to
the policies and requirements of this Handbook.

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B. In addition to the required documentation and procedures needed for
authorization and certification of a domestically-operated certified undercover
operation, operations conducted in foreign locations must include the
following:
1) written concurrence of the Director of OIA;
2) written concurrence of the DOJ OIA (this concurrence substitutes the
requirement of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s concurrence letter); and
3) written acknowledgement from each U.S. Attorney’s Office that holds
venue where the targets of the foreign operation are reasonably expected
to be prosecuted.

Chapter 13. UNDERCOVER INTERNET ACTIVITY
This Chapter provides guidelines for official undercover investigative Internet activities.
These activities should be coordinated with C3 and ICE Counsel, as appropriate. Special
care must be taken because on-line undercover activities can raise novel and/or complex
legal issues and/or involve sensitive policy issues. These include evidence collection and
entrapment and privacy issues.
SAs should adhere to accepted on-line investigative techniques as well as applicable rules
and laws. Available undercover Internet investigative resources include C3, ICE
Counsel, the local Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, the OI “Child Sexual
Exploitation Investigations Handbook,” and the DOJ Criminal Division’s “Searching and
Seizing Computers and Obtaining Electronic Evidence in Criminal Investigations
Manual.”
The use of privately-owned computers/Internet connections for undercover investigative
activities is prohibited except when approved in writing by the SAC.
The use of undercover computers or Internet connection devices for personal business is
prohibited. Personal business includes, but is not limited to: email, Internet Relay Chat,
Instant Messaging, and Blogs.
13.1

Limited Undercover Internet Investigative Activities

Limited undercover Internet investigative activity is activity that is approved by a firstline supervisor and requires utilizing the Internet in an undercover capacity to pursue
short-term investigations that do not involve either ICE or DHS sensitive circumstances.
Undercover operative accreditation is not required for limited undercover Internet
investigative activities.

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Limited undercover activity includes conducting searches on a suspect or target company,
visiting a target website, communicating with a target via Internet chat and/or
downloading information from Usenet, and/or maintaining contact with a suspect via an
undercover email account.
The following applies to limited undercover Internet investigative activities:
A. Backstopped identification, such as an undercover mailing address, driver’s
license, and/or credit cards should be used.
B. Computer hardware must be Government-owned and -authorized, and must be
backstopped/sanitized to ensure that the systems do not contain any
registrations that could reveal that the hardware was purchased or is being
used by the U.S. Government.
C. Software must not be registered to the U.S. Government. However, it must be
properly licensed, preferably to a backstopped undercover identity. Lists of
recommended software for undercover computers are available from C3.
D. Email accounts/addresses can be obtained either through paid Internet access
providers with bundled email accounts or through free services. The
registration for paid accounts is associated with the identity used to set up
each account. Backstopped identity must be utilized when setting up email
accounts/addresses. Upon establishment of an email account, SAs are
encouraged to contact C3 to ensure that the email provider does not include
header information that could reveal the governmental nature of the email
holder and compromise the undercover accounts.
E. Internet Service Provider (ISP) access accounts and other accounts used to
enable Internet access should be properly backstopped. Upon establishment
of an ISP account, SAs are encouraged to contact C3 to ensure that the ISP
provider does not include information that could reveal the governmental
nature of the ISP holder and compromise the undercover accounts.
F. SAs conducting undercover activity via wireless connections must ensure that
the connections are properly secured and encrypted to prevent compromise.
G. SAs must use proper evidence collection techniques.
13.2

Certified Undercover Internet Investigative Activities

Certified undercover Internet investigative activity is activity that requires the
authorization of a certified undercover operation and utilizes the Internet where the
undercover investigation is generally long-term and/or contains one or more ICE and/or
DHS sensitive circumstances. Certified undercover Internet investigative activity
includes agents operating in covert capacities developing and launching websites or
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posting messages on Internet bulletin boards purporting to sell legal and/or illegal items,
narcotics, weapons, and/or legal/illegal services.
The following applies to certified undercover Internet investigative activities:
A. all the items under Section 13.1, “Limited Undercover Internet Investigative
Activities”;
B. the authorization and certification of a certified undercover operation,
including the appropriate exemptions under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 or 8 U.S.C. §
1363a; and
C. authorization for investigations involving ICE or DHS sensitive circumstances
must be obtained in accordance with the policy and procedures in this
Handbook.
13.3

Maintenance of Electronic Subject Records

To facilitate investigative deconfliction, OI SAs must ensure the timely entry of business
subject records in TECS Case Management for all undercover websites, email addresses,
and screen names. The remarks section should contain the statement “contact the record
owner for further information.”
13.4

Special Circumstances

As with all undercover investigations, contract psychologists are available to undercover
SAs involved in undercover Internet investigations, as these can be particularly
distressing. For instance, they frequently involve viewing images of child pornography
and/or dealing with people who trade child pornography and/or travel to engage in sex
with minors. A contract psychologist is also available through C3 to address the wellbeing and concerns of SAs involved in undercover Internet investigative activity. SAs
are strongly encouraged to utilize these services when needed.

Chapter 14. PROCEDURES FOR CLOSING CERTIFIED UNDERCOVER
OPERATIONS
The procedures for closing certified undercover operations set forth in this Handbook
must comply with the provisions of 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a, to satisfy
liquidation, reports to Congress, and closeout audits. Since 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8
U.S.C. § 1363a are the provisions that authorize ICE to conduct certified undercover
operations, failure to comply with these provisions could result in the modification or loss
of this statutory authority by ICE.
This Chapter incorporates procedures for closing undercover operations, including:

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A. notification to Headquarters;
B. preparation of a closeout report;
C. liquidation of assets; and
D. financial reconciliation and closeout audit.
14.1

Notification of Intent to Close

When a decision has been made to close an ongoing certified undercover operation, the
SAC will send an “intent to close” memorandum to the Unit Chief, Undercover
Operations Unit.
The “intent to close” memorandum must include:
A. the CUC Case Management Program Code;
B. the date the undercover activities will/did cease;
C. an anticipated date when all criminal proceedings (other than appeals) will be
concluded;
D. an anticipated date when the required closeout report will be completed;
E. the date the records will be available for the OPR/MIU closeout audit;
F. the name and phone number of a point of contact to coordinate closeout
activities; and
G. a detailed account of any operational or administrative matters that may have
an impact on the closeout process.
Upon receipt of the memorandum, the Undercover Operations Unit will notify the
appropriate OI Headquarters personnel and prepare an interim closing certification for the
period required (not to exceed 180 days) to shut down the operation and forward it to the
Director of OI for review and approval. The closing certification will include the
appropriate statutory exemptions required for the completion of the closing process. The
closing certification will allow the operation to maintain a bank account and continue
using proceeds to fund the closeout process.
14.2

Closeout Report

The closeout report serves to provide an overview of the strategy and results of the
undercover operation. It shall include descriptions of the successes, as well as problems
that influenced operational effectiveness.
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The closeout report must be completed as soon as possible, but no later than 60 days from
the date of the interim closing certification or the date the last certification expired,
whichever is later.
The closeout report format may be obtained from the Undercover Operations Unit.
The closeout report shall contain a section for reporting incomplete administrative tasks.
A closeout report may be submitted prior to the completion of all related administrative
activities. If no additional undercover activities are anticipated, the closeout report
should be completed even though:
A. additional statistics may result from upcoming criminal proceedings;
B. not all property has been disposed of; and
C. all funds have not yet been deposited into the U.S. Treasury.
For example, if an undercover operation is no longer active and is retaining money in
bank accounts to pay for OPR/MIU audit travel expenses, the closeout report should be
completed. Completion of the outstanding activities will be captured in the closeout audit
and/or via a SAC memorandum to the Undercover Operations Unit (see Section 14.5,
“Closeout of CUFFS”).
14.3

Liquidation of Assets

The following procedures will be used to liquidate the assets of closed certified
undercover operations. For the purposes of liquidation, the assets of an undercover
operation are divided into three basic categories:
A. monetary assets (CUC-appropriated funds and proceeds);
B. property acquired outside FAR using the statutory business/purchase
exemption paid with appropriated funds or proceeds; and
C. property acquired by the operation through FAR paid with appropriated funds
or proceeds.
The options for liquidation of the various assets are different in each category. However,
it is essential that:
A. the final disposition of assets be supported with proper documentation;
B. the final disposition of property is consistent with statutory requirements; and
C. the property log is annotated to show the final disposition of each item.

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14.3.1 Monetary Assets (Proceeds and CUC-Appropriated Funds)
See also Section 6.5.3, “Seizure of Proceeds from Ongoing Operations.”
14.3.1(1) Proceeds
The determination as to which proceeds can be forfeited and placed in the appropriate
Forfeiture Fund or liquidated and deposited in the U.S. Treasury as miscellaneous
receipts must be made by the SAC prior to the issuance of the “intent to close”
memorandum. Proceeds that remain at the conclusion of an undercover operation can be
liquidated in one of two ways:
14.3.1(1.1) Forfeiture
If it can be sufficiently documented that operational proceeds are associated with the
violation of a statute that gives rise to the forfeiture of the proceeds, the proceeds can be
seized from the operation, forfeited, and deposited into the appropriate Forfeiture Fund.
This action should be coordinated with the local AIRG and the OI Asset Forfeiture Unit
at Headquarters.
The source (i.e., investigative target) of most proceeds received during undercover
investigations no longer has a legal claim to the funds (i.e., the proceeds were payment to
the operation for services, albeit illegal); therefore, notification (related to the seizure of
such proceeds) to the target is not required, although regulations regarding the
advertisement of the seizure still apply. In some circumstances, it will be necessary for
the SAC to determine whether or not any person, such as an innocent third party, may
have a legal interest in the specific proceeds to be forfeited. The SAC should consult
with the appropriate ICE Counsel for advice regarding any legal issues.
Note: The procedure contained in this Subsection (14.3.1(1.1)) may be used to forfeit the
proceeds of an ongoing certified undercover operation. This action requires the prior
written authorization of the SAC.
See also Section 6.5.3, “Seizure of Proceeds from Ongoing Operations.”
14.3.1(1.2) Deposit of Proceeds as Miscellaneous Receipts
19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a require that, as soon as the proceeds from an
undercover investigative operation are no longer necessary for the conduct of such
operation, such proceeds or the balance of such proceeds remaining at the time shall be
deposited into the U.S. Treasury as miscellaneous receipts. Additionally, if a proprietary
business, established or acquired as part of an undercover operation, is liquidated, sold, or
otherwise disposed of, the proceeds of the liquidation, sale, or other disposition, after
obligations are met, shall be deposited into the U.S. Treasury as miscellaneous receipts.

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Proceeds can be deposited as miscellaneous receipts by means of a cashier’s check or
other appropriate means as dictated by the Dallas Finance Center. The cashier’s check
should be made payable to “U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement” and sent to:
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Dallas Finance Center
P.O. Box 561587
Dallas, TX 75356-1587
Attention: U.S. Treasury Accounts Team
Prior contact and coordination with the Dallas Finance Center is required.
A memorandum from the SAC requesting deposit into the U.S. Treasury will be
forwarded to the ICE Finance Center accompanied by the funds. The memo will identify
the money as proceeds of a certified undercover operation and list the CUC Case
Management program code. Documentation of the transaction and a copy of the
memorandum must be included in the financial records of the operation.
Note: It is important to note that the deposit of proceeds may be delayed until they are
no longer needed as evidence in a court proceeding.
Note: The procedure contained in this Subsection (14.3.1(1.2)) may be used to deposit
the proceeds of an ongoing certified undercover operation as miscellaneous receipts.
This action requires the prior written authorization of the SAC.
14.3.1(2) Return of CUC-Appropriated Funds
CUC-appropriated funds that remain at the conclusion of the operation will be returned to
the Undercover Operations Unit’s CUC funds account for distribution to other certified
undercover operations. This action will be coordinated with the Undercover Operations
Unit. CUC-appropriated funds will be returned by means of a cashier’s check or other
appropriate means as dictated by the Dallas Finance Center. The cashier’s check should
be made payable to “U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Office of
Investigations (CUC Funds)” and sent to:
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Dallas Finance Center
P.O. Box 561587
Dallas, TX 75356-1587
Attn: Undercover Operations CUC Account
Prior contact and coordination with the Undercover Operations Unit and the Dallas
Finance Center is required.
A memorandum from the SAC identifying the money as CUC-appropriated funds of a
specific operation will be forwarded to the Dallas Finance Center with the funds. The
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memorandum will include the name of the operation, the program code of the operation,
the date the funds were distributed to the operation, and the accounting control number(s)
assigned at the time the funds were distributed. The memorandum will request that the
funds be returned to the CUC Undercover Operations Funding Account. Documentation
of the transaction and a copy of the memorandum must be included in the financial
records of the operation. A copy of the documentation shall be forwarded to the
Undercover Operations Unit.
Note: The procedure contained in this Subsection (14.3.1(2)) may be used for the return
of CUC-appropriated funds of an ongoing certified undercover operation. This action
requires the prior written authorization of the Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit.
14.3.2 Property
14.3.2(1) Purchases Outside the Scope of FAR Using the Business/Purchase
Exemption (Covert)
If, under the business/purchase exemption, appropriated funds or proceeds were
expended outside FAR to purchase property for an undercover operation, the property
must be disposed of in one of four ways:
14.3.2(1.1) Sale
Operational personnel should attempt to dispose of non-sensitive equipment (i.e.,
furniture, files, copiers, etc.) through the completion of Standard Form (SF) 126, “Report
of Property for Sale.” The completed SF 126 should be sent to the National Logistics
Center, Laguna Niguel, California. The National Logistics Center will subsequently
interact with General Services Administration (GSA) officials to process the claim for
liquidation.
In the case of sensitive law enforcement equipment (i.e., radios, technical equipment,
etc.), the equipment must not be made available to the general public via GSA. This
equipment may be transferred to another certified undercover operation, sold to other law
enforcement agencies following the standard GSA requirements, or destroyed, as detailed
below.
Note: All funds received from the sale of the property must be deposited into the U.S.
Treasury as miscellaneous receipts (see Section 14.3.1(1.2)), “Deposit of Proceeds as
Miscellaneous Receipts.”)
14.3.2(1.2) Transfer
After an operation has been concluded, items purchased using the business/purchase
exemption may be transferred to another ongoing certified undercover operation
(including operations in other SAC offices). The receiving operation must pay any and
all expenses associated with the transfer of such property. The receiving operation will
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then become responsible for the proper liquidation of the property at the conclusion of
that operation. The transfer of property must be approved, in writing, by the DAD, ISD.
The transfer must occur at the time of liquidation, as the property cannot be stored in
anticipation of starting another operation.
The transfer of property that has been acquired under the business/purchase exemption to
another certified undercover operation requires a memorandum from the closing
operation’s CUC Lead/Administrative GS which:
A. lists the operations involved in the transfer, including the CUC Case
Management program code;
B. specifically identifies the equipment being transferred (make, model, serial
number, color, etc.) and states the reason for the transfer;
C. states that the property was acquired under the statutory business/purchase
exemption and must be disposed of pursuant to 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C.
§ 1363a;
D. has an approval line for the SAC(s) and the DAD, ISD; and
E. includes a signature block for the acquiring operation’s CUC Lead/
Administrative GS accepting responsibility for the property.
The transfer memorandum will be forwarded for approval. After approval,
A. a copy of the transfer memorandum will be placed in the Property Use File of
each operation;
B. copies of all documents related to the transferred item in the original Property
Use File will be provided to the receiving operation;
C. the Property/Equipment Log of the transferring operation will be annotated to
show the transfer in the “Final Disposition” column; and
D. the receiving operation will enter the property into their Property/Equipment
Log showing the origin (operation name) and $0 as the cost of acquisition.
Any expenses incurred in transferring the property shall be paid from the funds of the
receiving operation.
Note: The Property Use File and Property/Equipment Log are defined in Section 6.21,
“Accounting for Certified Undercover Operation Property.”
Note: Proceeds cannot be transferred and must be liquidated as described in Section
14.3.1(1), “Proceeds.”
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14.3.2(1.3) Forfeiture
Any property that has been purchased with proceeds, using the business/purchase
exemptions that are subject to forfeiture under a statute containing a tracing provision,
may be seized and forfeited. See Section 14.3.1(1.1), “Forfeiture,” for additional
information regarding the forfeiture of proceeds.
After forfeiture, applicable procedures should be used to acquire the property for U.S.
Government service.
14.3.2(1.4) Destruction
Property that has very little or no value and therefore cannot efficiently be sold,
transferred, or forfeited will be destroyed using the standard ICE property destruction
procedures.
The documentation related to the destruction, including the authorization and a
memorandum documenting the destruction, will be included in the operation’s permanent
files. The destruction will be noted on the Property Log in the “Final Disposition”
column.
14.3.2(2) Property Acquired Through the Use of the FAR Requirements (Overt)
If appropriated funds or proceeds were expended to purchase property using the
requirements of FAR, the property should be treated in the same manner as any item
owned by ICE. The documentation related to the disposition of such property will be
included in the operation’s permanent files. The disposition will be noted on the Property
Log in the “Final Disposition” column.
In the case of sensitive law enforcement equipment (i.e., radios, technical equipment
etc.), the equipment must not be made available to the general public via GSA. These
items may be sold or transferred to other law enforcement agencies following the
standard GSA requirements.
Note: The procedure contained in this Subsection (14.3.2) may be used to liquidate
property acquired by an ongoing certified undercover operation. This action requires
the prior written authorization of the DAD, ISD. Property must be held by the
purchasing operation for a minimum of 1 year prior to transferring to another ongoing
operation. This procedure is not intended to facilitate the purchasing of equipment by
one ongoing operation for use by another ongoing operation. The transfer of property of
an ongoing certified undercover operation for the general use of ICE is prohibited.
14.4

Closeout Audits

A detailed closing financial audit must be conducted on operations that have been
certified to:
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A. establish a proprietary business;
B. deposit funds in a bank; or
C. generate and/or expend proceeds.
The OPR/MIU will conduct all closeout audits. The Undercover Operations Unit will
notify OPR/MIU of the need for a closeout audit. Coordination of the closeout audit will
take place between OPR/MIU and the operation’s designated contact person. The
Undercover Operations Unit will provide assistance with the closeout audit as
appropriate.
14.5

Closeout of CUFFS

When a certified undercover operation is identified for closure, the following steps shall
be taken to close out CUFFS:
A. All outstanding advances must be liquidated.
B. The petty cash fund will have a final reconciliation and any balances will be
deposited into the operation’s bank account.
C. All recurring obligations such as leases and service contracts will be
terminated, or arrangements can be made for the obligation to be transferred
to another ongoing certified undercover operation, if applicable.
Note: The termination of leases and other obligations should be achieved
with the advice of ICE counsel.
D. All outstanding debts of the operation will be settled.
E. All investments will be liquidated and deposited into the operation’s bank
account.
F. Security deposits or other monies owed to the operation will be collected and
deposited in the operation’s bank account.
G. The assets of the operation will be liquidated as per Section 14.3, “Liquidation
of Assets,” and any expenses and/or proceeds generated from the liquidation
will be entered into CUFFS.
Once the above steps have been taken, all remaining funds except $20,000, if available,
will be liquidated using one of the methods detailed in Section 14.3, “Liquidation of
Assets.” The remaining $20,000 will be used to offset expenses incurred by OPR/MIU
personnel performing the closeout audit of the operation. Following the closeout audit,
OPR/MIU will provide a detailed account of expenses for the closeout audit (i.e., travel)
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to the Undercover Operations Unit. The Undercover Operations Unit will forward the
expense items to the SAC with instructions regarding payment of the items. Any
operational funds remaining after these payments will be deposited into the U.S. Treasury
as miscellaneous receipts and the CUFFS records will be closed.
The undercover operation’s management must continue to file monthly financial reports
as described in Section 7.1, “SAC Monthly Reports (Financial),” until the CUFFS
records are closed. Once the final OPR/MIU closeout audit is completed and the CUFFS
records are closed, a final CUFFS report must be sent to the Undercover Operations Unit.

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Appendix A

AUTHORITIES
The following authorities were transferred to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in the
Homeland Security Act of 2002 and delegated by the Secretary of Homeland Security to the
Assistant Secretary of ICE in Sections 2A and DD of DHS Delegation 7030.2 entitled,
"Delegation of Authority to the Assistant Secretary for U.S. Immigration and Customs
Enforcement,” and further redelegated to the Director of OI in ICE Delegation Order 04-002
entitled, “Authority to Certify the Exemption of Undercover Operations Form Certain Laws
Within U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”
19 U.S.C. § 2081, “Undercover Investigative Operations of the Customs Service”
(a)

Certification required for exemption of undercover operations from certain laws.
With respect to any undercover investigative operation of the United States Customs
Service (hereinafter in this section referred to as the “Service”) which is necessary for the
detection and prosecution of offenses against the Unites States which are within the
jurisdiction of the Secretary of the Treasury (1)

sums authorized to be appropriated for the Service may be used (A)
to purchase property, buildings, and other facilities, and to lease space,
within the United States, the District of Columbia, and the territories and
possessions of the United States without regard to (i)
(ii)
(iii)
(iv)
(v)

sections 1341 and 3324 of title 31,
sections 11(a) and 22 of title 41,
section 255 of title 41,
section 8141 of title 40, and
section 254 (a) of title 41, and

(B)
to establish or to acquire proprietary corporations or business entities as
part of the undercover operation, and to operate such corporations or business
entities on a commercial basis, without regard to sections 9102 and 9103 of title
31;
(2)

sums authorized to be appropriated for the Service and the proceeds from the
undercover operation, may be deposited in banks or other financial institutions
without regard to the provisions of section 648 of title 18 and section 3302 of title
31; and

(3)

the proceeds from the undercover operation may be used to offset necessary and
reasonable expenses incurred in such operation without regard to the provisions of
section 3302 of title 31; and

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only upon the written certification of the Commissioner of Customs (or, if designated by the
Commissioner the Deputy or an Assistant Commissioner of Customs) that any action authorized
by paragraph (1), (2), or (3) of this subsection is necessary for the conduct of such undercover
operation.
(b)

Liquidation of corporation and business entities.

If a corporation or business entity established or acquired as part of an undercover operation
under paragraph (1)(B) of subsection (a) of this section with a net value over $50,000 is to be
liquidated, sold, or otherwise disposed of, the Service, as much in advance as the Commissioner
or his designee determines is practicable, shall report the circumstances to the Secretary of the
Treasury. The proceeds of the liquidation, sale, or other disposition, after obligations are met,
shall be deposited in the Treasury of the United States as miscellaneous receipts.
(c)

Deposits of proceeds.

As soon as the proceeds from an undercover investigative operation with respect to which an
action is authorized and carried out under paragraphs (2) and (3) of subsection (a) of this section
are no longer necessary for the conduct of such operation, such proceeds or the balance of such
proceeds remaining at the time shall be deposited into the Treasury of the United States as
miscellaneous receipts.
(d)

Audits.
(1)

The Service shall conduct a detailed financial audit of each undercover
investigative operation which is closed in each fiscal year, and
(A) submit the results of the audit in writing to the Secretary of the Treasury; and
(B) not later than 180 days after such undercover operation is closed, submit a
report to the Congress concerning such audit.

(2)

The Service shall also submit a report annually to the Congress specifying as to its
undercover investigative operations (A) the number, by programs, of undercover investigative operations pending as
of the end of the 1-year period for which such report is submitted;
(B) the number, by programs, of undercover investigative operations commenced
in the 1-year period preceding the period for which such report is submitted; and
(C) the number, by programs, of undercover investigative operations closed in the
1-year period preceding the period for which such report is submitted and, with
respect to each such closed undercover operation, the results obtained and any
civil claims made with respect thereto.

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(e)

Definitions.

For purposes of subsection (d) of this section (1)

The term “closed” refers to the earliest point in time at which (A) all criminal proceedings (other than appeals) are concluded, or
(B) covert activities are concluded, whichever occurs later.

(2)

The term “employees” means employees, as defined in section 2105 of title 5, of
the Service.

(3)

The terms “undercover investigative operation” and “undercover operation” mean
any undercover investigative operation of the Service (A) in which –
(i) the gross receipts (excluding interest earned) exceed $50,000, or
(ii) expenditures (other than expenditures for salaries of employees)
exceed $150,000; and
(B) which is exempt from sections 3302 or 9102 of title 31,

except that subparagraphs(A) and (B) shall not apply with respect to the report required under
paragraph (2) of subsection (d) of this section.

8 U.S.C. §1363a, “Undercover Investigative Authority” (of the Immigration and
Naturalization Service)
(a)

In general
With respect to any undercover investigative operation of the Service which is necessary
for the detection and prosecution of crimes against the United States(1)

sums appropriated for the Service may be used for leasing space within the United
States and the territories and possessions of the United States without regard to
the following provisions of law:
(A)
(B)
(C)
(D)
(E)

section 1341(a) of title 31,
section 11(a) of title 41,
section 255 of title 41,
section 34 of title 40,
section 3324(a) and (b) of title 31,

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(F)
(G)

section 22 of title 41, and
subsections (a) and (c) (FOOTNOTE 1) of section 254 of title 41;
(FOOTNOTE 1) See References in Text note below.

(2)

sums appropriated for the Service may be used to establish or to acquire
proprietary corporations or business entities as part of an undercover operation,
and to operate such corporations or business entities on a commercial basis,
without regard to the provisions of section 9102 of title 31;

(3)

sums appropriated for the Service, and the proceeds from the undercover
operation, may be deposited in banks or other financial institutions without regard
to the provisions of section 648 of title 18 and of section 3302(a) of title 31; and

(4)

the proceeds from the undercover operation may be used to offset necessary and
reasonable expenses incurred in such operation without regard to the provisions of
section 3302(b) of title 31.

The authority set forth in this subsection may be exercised only upon written certification of the
Commissioner, in consultation with the Deputy Attorney General, that any action authorized by
paragraph (1), (2), (3), or (4) is necessary for the conduct of the undercover operation.
(b)

Disposition of proceeds no longer required
As soon as practicable after the proceeds from an undercover investigative operation,
carried out under paragraphs (3) and (4) of subsection (a) of this section, are no longer
necessary for the conduct of the operation, the proceeds or the balance of the proceeds
remaining at the time shall be deposited into the Treasury of the United States as
miscellaneous receipts.

(c)

Disposition of certain corporations and business entities
If a corporation or business entity established or acquired as part of an undercover
operation under paragraph (2) of subsection (a) of this section with a net value of over
$50,000 is to be liquidated, sold, or otherwise disposed of, the Service, as much in
advance as the Commissioner or Commissioner's designee determines practicable, shall
report the circumstances to the Attorney General, the Director of the Office of
Management and Budget, and the Comptroller General. The proceeds of the liquidation,
sale, or other disposition, after obligations are met, shall be deposited in the Treasury of
the United States as miscellaneous receipts.

(d)

Financial audits
The Service shall conduct detailed financial audits of closed undercover operations on a
quarterly basis and shall report the results of the audits in writing to the Deputy Attorney
General.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Undercover Operations Handbook
A-iv
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April 14, 2008

Appendix B

Certified Undercover Operation

CUFFS
Expense/Advance Approval Form

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Undercover Operations Handbook
B-i
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April 14, 2008

DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
CERTIFIED UNDERCOVER OPERATION
CUFFS EXPENSE / ADVANCE APPROVAL FORM
Operation Name:

CUC Program Code:

Name of Requestor:

Date:

Case Number:
Total Amount Requested:

$
Requestor's Description of Required Item and Justification for Expense or Advance (CBR)

FUNDS CONTROL (CBCA/GS)
Are sufficient funds available to incur this transaction?

Yes

No

Is this transaction within the Operation's 6-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan?

Yes

No

I certify that sufficient funding is available in the respective OCC(s) and CLASS(es) used to record this transaction in CUFFS.
Reviewed by Lead GS:
CUFFS Administrator/or/GS: (Sign/Date)

(optional) Reviewed by:

TYPE OF EXPENSE APPROVED (check all that apply) (CBCA)
Covert

Overt

CI Expense

Recurring Obligation
POI/POE

Travel

General

Equipment (Update Property Log)

Advance

Petty Cash

APPROVAL AND CERTIFICATION OF EXPENSE/ADVANCE
I hereby acknowledge both affirmative Funds Control responses provided by the CUFFS Administrator/GS
and authorize an expenditure of operational funds

and/or an advance

not to exceed $

for the item described above. I certify that the expense is reasonable and necessary for the
conduct of the operation and within my approval authority.
Name/Title of Approving Official:

Signature

Date:

RECEIPT ADVANCE (CBR)
I acknowledge receipt of $

an advance for the expenditure described above. I currently have

unliquidated advance(s) totaling $

Date this Advance Issued:
(Recipient's Signature & Title)

ALL advances will be liquidated in accordance with the Undercover Operations Handbook.
Advance Certification
(CBCA)

Date:

Check No.:

Transaction No.:

LIQUIDATION OF ADVANCE (CBCA)
Date

Receipts

Advance Holder (Sign/Date)
Advance
Amount $

Invoice

Other Certification Document

ICE Form 73-293

CUFFS Administrator (Sign/Date)
Documented
Expenses $

* Remaining
Outstanding
Balance

Amount
Returned $

* If Remaining Balance is not zero, advise the GS

CUFFS Financial Information Posting Notes (CBCA)
Entry Date

Check Number

Transaction Number

CLASS

OCC

CUFFS Account

Amount

CBR – Completed by Requestor CBCA – Completed by CUFFS Administrator – Record-Keeper
ICE Form 73-006 (04/08)

Appendix C

Pick-Up Log
for
Undercover Operations

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Undercover Operations Handbook
C-i
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April 14, 2008

DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
PICK-UP LOG FOR UNDERCOVER OPERATIONS
Operation:
Date

FY:
Transaction
Number

Amount

Undercover
Agent/CI

Report/Case
Number

Points

Disposition
Status

TOTAL $
DISPOSITION CODES: A = Assisting Other Offices; B = Bank Deposit; C = Cash; D = Drafts; E = EFTs;
O = Other; P = Physical Delivery; S = Seized; T = Transfer
ICE Form 73-007 (04/08)

Appendix D

Property/Equipment Log
for
Undercover Operations

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Undercover Operations Handbook
D-i
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April 14, 2008

DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
PROPERTY/EQUIPMENT LOG
FOR UNDERCOVER OPERATIONS
Operation:
Item Description

Purchase
Date

Vendor

Cost

Purchase
Method
(see codes)

PURCHASE CODES:
DISPOSITION
=
P Procured =
R Retained
=
A Appropriated
=
S Seized
F=Federal Acquisition Regulations
N=Non-Federal Acquisition Regulations

Location of
Equipment

Final
Disposition
(see codes)

CODES:
L=Liquidated

ICE Form 73-008 (04/08)

Appendix E

CERTIFIED UNDERCOVER OPERATION
MONTHLY FINANCIAL REVIEW WORKSHEET
(Instructions)

The Undercover Operations Handbook requires that a monthly financial review be performed for each
open certified undercover operation.
I. The CUFFS Administrator (Record-Keeper) should create a Financial Status package
which includes, at a minimum, the following items:
Item A - CUFFS Balance Sheet (select date range - "ALL" and "EXPAND" to reveal details) ending on
the last day of the previous month.
Item B - CUFFS Income and Expenses by All Classes Statement (select "COLLAPSE" to conceal
details) from inception to the last day of the previous month.
Item C - CUFFS Income and Expenses Itemized Report for the month being reported. (Attach copies of
approval documents and transaction documents for any expenditures exceeding $2,499 (property) and $4,999
(non-property), or the locally established first-line supervisor approval level; copies of ICE Form 73-293 paid this
month; Petty Cash funds on hand count sheet, if applicable; and other reports as required.)

Item D - Budget reports for all outstanding Investigative Advances received by the operation.
Item E - CUFFS Income and Expenses report, reflecting the expenses incurred during the
same 6-month timeframe identified on the current 6-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan.
(The QuickBooks report settings should be: "From" first month/first day/current year;
"To" sixth month/last day/current year; Columns "Total only" and "Sort By" Default.)
Item F - Statement of Current Proceeds Balance.
Item G - CUFFS Reconciliation Summary Report for each bank account.
Item H - Copies of the most recent bank statements for all bank accounts.
II. The Operation Manager will use the Financial Status package to complete the
Undercover Operation Monthly Financial Review Worksheet.
Findings will be noted in the space provided. Any corrective action taken will be recorded.
III. The Operation Manager will forward the completed worksheet and supporting documents
through the established chain of command to the SAC for certification and signature.
After SAC signature, the original Monthly Financial Review Worksheet and Financial Status package
will be retained as part of the operational files.
IV. Each deficiency must be resolved as soon as possible. Issues that cannot be resolved
should be referred to the Undercover Operations Unit.

Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-i

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CERTIFIED UNDERCOVER OPERATION
MONTHLY FINANCIAL REVIEW WORKSHEET

Name of Undercover Operation
Date of This Monthly Review
Current Certification Expiration Date
Signature of CUFFS Administrator
(Record-Keeper)

Signature of Lead GS or
Operation Manager
(Reviewer)

Signature of CUC Administrative
Overseer
Signature of SAC and Date
An "X" appears in a box below to indicate that action was taken to verify that the corresponding information is included
in this Financial Status package. The reviewer may require additional documents as noted.

Item A - CUFFS Balance Sheet (select date range - "ALL" and "EXPAND" to reveal
details) ending on the last day of the previous month.
Item B - CUFFS Income and Expenses by All Classes Statement (select "COLLAPSE"
to conceal details) from inception to the last day of the previous month.
Item C - CUFFS Income and Expenses Itemized Report for the month being reported.
(Attach copies of approval documents and transaction documents for any expenditures exceeding
$2,499 (property) and $4,999 (non-property), or the locally established first-line supervisor approval level;
copies of any ICE 73-293 paid this review month; Petty Cash funds on hand count sheet, if applicable; and
other reports as required.)

Item D - Budget reports for all outstanding Investigative Advances received.
Item E - CUFFS Income and Expenses Report, reflecting the expenses incurred during the same
6-month timeframe identified on the current 6-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan. (The
QuickBooks report settings should be: "From" first month/first day/current year; "To" sixth month/
last day/current year; Columns "Total only" and "Sort By" Default.)
Item F - Statement of Current Proceeds Balance.
Item G - CUFFS Reconciliation Summary Report for each bank account.
Item H - Copies of the most recent bank statements for all bank accounts.

Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

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I. Balance Sheet Report (Item A)
I. A.

Bank accounts with balances over $100,000

Operational bank account balances in domestic banks should not exceed $100,000
(Section 6.16.1 of the Undercover Operation Handbook). This is due to the maximum
insurance deposit limit of $100,000 per account. Undercover operations may, in certain
circumstances, need to exceed this $100,000 limit in any one bank account. When this
situation arises, it is the responsibility of the SAC to minimize the risk of loss and to
document (via memorandum) the relevant facts pertaining to the need to exceed insured
levels.
In addition, the SAC must be aware that funds deposited into foreign financial institutions
may not receive any insurance protection. The SAC must evaluate and balance the
operational necessity of keeping large amounts in foreign accounts against the risk of
potential loss.
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Reviewer's Initials ________

List any and all bank accounts with balances over $100,000. Justify why each
Comments account is in excess of $100,000, not in a sweep account, and/or why the funds
Required are not maintained in separate accounts with individual EINs.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
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April 14, 2008

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I. B.

Outstanding Advances (Section 6.7) of Funds and/or Outstanding Liabilities

Review funds advanced (CUFFS accounts 1801.xx to 1890.xx) to other persons/entities.
By reviewing the Balance Sheet on a monthly basis, the manager can determine
whether advances are being liquidated in a timely manner.

Question large or increasing liabilities or advances and ascertain why any advance is
outstanding more than 5 business days.
The manager must also carefully examine any advances to ensure that the advances
are utilized only in support of this undercover operation.
Note: End-of-month money pickups that have not been distributed should show as
liabilities within QuickBooks.
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Reviewer's Initials ________

List all outstanding advances, including dollar amounts, the payee's
name and the number of days outstanding. If any advance listed has
Comments been outstanding in excess of 5 business days, include a justification
Required indicating why additional time is required prior to liquidation.
Attach photocopies of the Expense/Advance Approval Form showing
advances outstanding in excess of 5 business days.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-iv

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I. C.

Undeposited Funds

Undeposited funds financial activity involves CUFFS account 1250.XX. Any financial
activity involving undeposited funds increases the risk of loss or theft. All undeposited
funds should be accounted for by the Reviewer. The SAC is responsible for ensuring
that undeposited funds are safeguarded and are left undeposited only when required by
operational necessity.
A petty cash fund maintained by the undercover operation must follow policy (Section
6.6 of the Undercover Operations Handbook). The Petty Cash Daily Register must be
properly maintained and all transactions must be posted to CUFFS within the month
they occur.
Petty Cash Current Balance $
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Comments
Required

Reviewer's Initials ________

List all dollar amounts of undeposited funds, the source of the funds,
number of days undeposited , and a justification as to why the funds
remain undeposited.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-v

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I. D.

Bank Reconciliation (Items A, G and H) (CUFFS Manual)

Compare the bank account balances shown on the CUFFS Balance Sheet Report with
balances shown on the bank statement for each account.
Verify that any differences in these amounts are reconciled in the CUFFS Reconciliation
Report for each account.
On the Reconciliation Report, the CUFFS "Cleared Balance" should be the same as the
bank statement balance.
The "CUFFS Ending Account Balance" should be the same as the amount shown on
the CUFFS Balance Sheet Report.
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Comments
Required

Reviewer's Initials ________

List all bank accounts that are not reconciled and what
specific steps are being taken to reconcile each bank account.
Document corrective action.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

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II.

Income and Expenses by All Classes (Collapsed) Report (Items B, D and F )
II. A. Negative balances on the CUFFS Report Net Income line. (Refer to the CUFFS Manual.)
This report shows all funding and disbursements from the inception of the operation to the end of the reporting
month. Each column represents a Class in QuickBooks (a specific investigative advance or proceeds
balance). Review the total balance of funds available for each investigative advance by reviewing the Net
Income row, including Proceeds. Any negative Net Income balances must be examined and corrected.
Expenses can be charged only against a particular funding source to the extent that there are funds available.

Budget
Verify that each funded OCC line item in each Investigative Advance (CUC-Appropriated), Item D has a
minus sign (-) and dollar amount or 0.00 in the "$ Over Budget" column or 100% or less in the "% of
Budget" column. The - $,$$$.$$ or 100% or less indicates that funds are available in that specific
Investigative Advance in that specific OCC to offset related expenses.
If a SAC determines that monies in the investigative advance need to be reprogrammed from one OCC to
another, this should be coordinated with the Undercover Operations Unit. The SAC is responsible for
ensuring that funds received as investigative advances by OCC are not overspent in that OCC. The Budget
Report is used to monitor the availablity of funds and identify overspending.

Investigative Advances
Verify that the CUFFS manager has developed budgets for ALL Investigative Advances (CUC-Appropriated
Funds).
When an operation requests an Investigative Advance, the Advance is distributed into specific OCCs. This
allows the operation to incur general expenses (travel OCC 21, rent OCC 23, services OCC 25, supplies OCC
26, and equipment OCC 31). The expensing of these funds is recorded and tracked by the Dallas Finance
Center.

Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Reviewer's Initials ________

List all Classes that are showing a negative Net Income balance. Explain why this is the case and
provide a justification for each negative balance. Document corrective action.

Comments List any OCC line item that does not reflect a minus sign (-) or reflects a percent greater than
Required 100% and describe what action will be taken to resolve each item.
List each Investigative Advance Budget that was reviewed during this reporting cycle. Identify
any expenses funded by an Investigative Advance which resulted in the Advance exceeding its
two-digit OCC budgeted levels. Document corrective action.

SAC Concurrence
Date:

Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

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II. B.

Unclassified Column

If the Income & Expenses Report lists a Class identified as "Unclassified," no
dollar value should be reflected other than $0.00.
Each financial transaction must include a specific funding source (Class). If the
CUFFS Administrator did not assign a Class to a transaction line, QuickBooks
automatically creates a column labeled "Unclassified." This must be corrected by
the CUFFS Administrator. This can be prevented from recurring by going to
QuickBooks, Preference, Accounting, Company Preferences, and checking the box
"Prompt to assign classes."
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Comments
Required

Reviewer's Initials ________

List any financial transaction not showing a funding source (Class).
Document corrective action.

SAC Concurrence
Date:

Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-viii

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III.

Income and Expenses

(Item C)

III. A. Verify that any and all funds received during the month are recorded properly.
The SACs are responsible for ensuring that all funding associated with the undercover
operation is recorded in QuickBooks. This includes all funding provided by Headquarters,
Proceeds, Other Agencies, SAC, etc.
If the operation involves money pick-ups, a separate Pick Up Log (Appendix C) must
identify each pick-up conducted.
The reviewer should verify with the CUFFS Administrator and operation manager that all
funding received has been properly recorded in QuickBooks.

Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Comments
Required

Reviewer's Initials ________

List all funding received for this month and verify its
documentation in CUFFS. Document corrective action.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-ix

OFFICIAL USE ONLY

III. B. Verify that all expenditures are properly recorded and explained.
The "Name" and "Memo" fields associated with each expense must provide sufficient
information to enable the reviewer to determine if expenses are recorded in CUFFS
using the correct CUFFS accounts, OCCs, CLASS, etc.
Whenever an expense can be attributed to a particular investigation, the specific case
number must be included in the memo column.
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:
Comments
Required

Reviewer's Initials ________

List any case-specific or non-recurring expenses not associated with a case
number and justify. Document corrective action.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-x

OFFICIAL USE ONLY

III. C. Necessary and Reasonable Expenses (Section 6.2.1)
The Undercover Operations Handbook contains guidance for necessary and
reasonable expenditures. Look for unusual transactions or spikes in expenses.
For example, you have seen approved monthly cell phone expenses totaling $200$300 in previous months. This month, you find that the same cell phone expenses
are $4,000. Ensure that operational funds are not supplementing non-operational
expenses (general SAC office budget). The same applies to other expenses,
advances, vehicles, etc.
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Comments
Required

Reviewer's Initials ________

List any unusual or costly expenditures and provide the appropriate
justification.

SAC Concurrence
Date:

Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

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III. D. Expenditure Approval Levels (Section 6.17)
Review all Expense/Advance Approval Forms and verify that prior authorization for each
expenditure was obtained at the management level appropriate for the amount of the
expenditure. Review transaction source documents (e.g., receipts) to ensure that
expenditures correspond to approval documents. Exigent expenses that did not receive
prior approval require a memorandum.
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:
Comment
Required

Reviewer's Initials ________

List any "expense" transaction that does not have the proper
supporting receipts, explain why and if there is a supporting
memorandum (required). Document corrective action.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-xii

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III. E.

Property (Section 6.21)

Ensure that property acquired over the past month has been properly recorded in the
Operation's Property/Equipment Log and, if necessary, the current ICE property
system.
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Reviewer's Initials ________

within
whether the
Comments List all property acquired
PAGE
12 the past month and indicate
OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Required business exemption and/or FAR was used when purchasing the property.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-xiii

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III. F. Recoverable Funds (CUFFS Manual) (Item B)
Ensure that the available Recoverable Funds balance reported in CUFFS is the same amount
that was initially made available to this CUC operation. If the actual amount reported is less
than that which was originally issued, a full explanation is required.
Note: Funds previously reported as "written-off" via a Lost Load Report and follow-up
investigation are exempt.
Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Reviewer's Initials ________

Determine if any discrepancies exist between each Money Laundering (Recoverable
Funds) Investigative Advance made available to this CUC operation and what is
reported in QuickBooks.
If the funds reported available in any Money Laundering Investigative Advance are
Comments less than its original funding level, list that advance, the original funded amount,
Required current funds available, and the events that contributed to this discrepancy. In
addition, describe the interim steps/resolution (i.e., lost load memo, stolen by CI,
etc.) until the respective amounts are properly written off both in CUFFS and by the
Dallas Finance Center.

SAC Concurrence
Date:

Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

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III. G. Third-Party Payments
Verify that any and all compensation (POI/POE, stipends, commissions, etc.) made within
the past month are individually supported by a properly completed ICE 73-293 and
whether or not policy was adhered to during the entire compensation process.

Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Reviewer's Initials ________

List (sequentially) all ICE 73-293s that were executed during this reporting cycle,
provide the dollar amount for each, and indicate whether policy was followed
regarding payments, i.e., two law enforcement officer signatures; if paid via
Comments
wire transfer, a copy of said wire transfer; original report in the file; the correct
Required
copy forwarded to HQ, etc.
Additionally, note if points and commissions were paid and indicate whether an
approved corresponding PAA exists. Document corrective action.

SAC Concurrence
Date:
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

E-xv

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III. H. Expenditure Authorization (Item E)
Using the Income & Expenses Report for the current authorization period, ensure
that operational expenses do not exceed the expenditure authorization approved by
the Director of OI.
If it appears that expenses will exceed the expenditure authorization prior to the end
of the authorization period, ensure that a revised package is submitted requesting an
expansion in expenditure authority.

Reviewer's findings and comments presented below:

Reviewer's Initials ________

Comments List any OCC that has exceeded the expenditure authorization approved
Required for this current 6-month cycle. Document corrective action.

SAC Concurrence

Print Form
Undercover Operations Handbook
April 14, 2008

Date:
E-xvi

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Appendix F

TABLE OF TRANGRESSIONS AND CORRECTIVE ACTIONS
The following Table of Transgressions and Corrective Actions establishes a uniform and
balanced approach to correcting problems within certified undercover operations. The
Table is for general guidance and is not meant to be all-inclusive, nor does it create
requirements related to these issues. Operational issues should be assessed as to whether
they are operation-wide or compartmentalized (i.e., only involving one programmatic
area or investigative group) problems. Critical operation-wide problems may result in the
suspension of the operation. Critical compartmentalized issues may result in the
suspension of the offending program and/or group activity.
The Director of OI is the certifying and authorizing official for certified undercover
operations and, as such, is the official responsible for all corrective actions. Any
requirements related to the Office of Professional Responsibility notification are in no
way affected by this Table or the actions set forth herein.
COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

RECORD
KEEPING
QuickBooks Entry
Serious

Errors in the use of proper
OCCs, funding classes or
similar entry actions that have
no effect on the operation’s
financial integrity.

The operation’s CUFFS
Administrator will correct the
errors. The errors and the
corrective actions taken will be
reported on the next Monthly
Financial Worksheet.

Severe

Errors in the use of proper
OCCs, funding classes or
similar entry actions that have
some minor effect on the
operation’s financial integrity.

The operation’s management
shall ensure that the proper
corrective entries have been
input into CUFFS and that the
CUFFS Administrator fully
understands any errors so that
they do not recur. The errors and
corrective actions taken will be
reported on the next Monthly
Financial Worksheet.

Critical

Errors in the use of proper
OCCs, funding classes or
similar entry actions that have
the effect of disrupting the
operation’s financial integrity.

The SAC will suspend all
operational expenditures until
such time as the operation’s
managers and the CUFFS
Administrator have corrected all
errors. The SAC will ensure that
the appropriate correcting entries

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Undercover Operations Handbook
F-i
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April 14, 2008

COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

have been input, and that the
operational managers and the
CUFFS Administrator fully
understand the errors so that they
do not recur. The SAC will
ensure that the operation’s
CUFFS/QuickBooks are
financially sound prior to
allowing operational
expenditures to recommence.
The errors and corrective actions
taken will be reported on the next
Monthly Financial Worksheet.
CUFFS
Documentation
Serious

Errors in the proper use of
EAFs, ICE Forms 73-293s,
receipts (including substitute
memos) or similar
documentation that have no
effect on the operation’s
financial integrity.

The operation’s managers will
correct the errors. Appropriate
explanatory documentation will
be created and made part of the
operation’s permanent record. A
general note of explanation will
be added to the next Monthly
Financial Worksheet.

Severe

Errors in the proper use of
EAFs, ICE Forms 73-293s,
receipts (including substitute
memos) or similar
documentation that have a
minor effect on the operation’s
financial integrity.

The SAC will ensure that the
operation’s managers correct the
errors. Appropriate explanatory
documentation will be created
and made part of the operation's
permanent record. The
operation’s management shall
ensure that all operational
personnel fully understand the
errors so that they do not recur.
A detailed explanation of the
errors and corrective action taken
will be added to the next
Monthly Financial Worksheet.

Critical

Errors in the proper use of
EAFs, ICE Forms 73-293s,
receipts (including substitute
memos) or similar
documentation that have a
major effect on the operation’s
financial integrity.

The SAC will suspend all
operational expenditures and
report the issues to the
Undercover Operations Unit.
The Undercover Operations Unit
will assess the issue and report
its findings to the Director of OI.
The SAC will ensure that the

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Undercover Operations Handbook
F-ii
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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

appropriate corrective action is
taken and that the operation is
fiscally sound prior to allowing
operational expenditures to
recommence. A detailed
explanation of the errors and
corrective actions taken will be
reported to the Undercover
Operations Unit and on the
Monthly Financial Worksheet.
The SAC shall ensure that all
operational personnel fully
understand the errors so that they
do not recur.
Six-Month
Expenditure
Authorization
Serious

Exceeding the operation’s 6month expenditure
authorization at the four-digit
OCC level by more than 10%
(without proper approval).

Operational management will
forward a memorandum of
explanation and a request for
retroactive approval of required
increases to expenditure
authorization to the SAC.
Operational management will
ensure that operational expenses
are actively tracked against the
operation’s 6-month expenditure
authorization.

Severe

Exceeding the operation’s 6month expenditure
authorization at the two-digit
OCC level by more than 10%
(without proper approval).

The SAC will forward a
memorandum of explanation and
a request for retroactive approval
of required increases to
expenditure authorization to the
Director of OI (through the
Undercover Operations Unit).
The SAC will ensure that
operational personnel have
implemented corrective action
and are actively tracking
operational expenses against the
operation’s 6-month expenditure
authorization.

Critical

Exceeding the operation’s total The SAC will suspend all
6-month expenditure
operational expenditures and
authorization by more than
report the issue to the

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Undercover Operations Handbook
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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

10% (without proper
approval).

Undercover Operations Unit.
The SAC will forward a
memorandum of explanation to
Note: OPR/MIU
the Director of OI (through the
recommended audit
Undercover Operations Unit)
adjustments are excluded. In with a request for retroactive
such cases, a memorandum to approval of required expenditure
the operation’s file should be authorization increases. The
SAC will ensure that operational
generated detailing the issue
and stating, “due to OPR/MIU personnel have implemented
corrective action and are actively
audit adjustments to correct
tracking operational expenses
the CUFFS records, the 6against the operation’s 6-month
month expenditure
authorization levels were
expenditure authorization prior to
allowing expenditure to
exceeded.”
recommence.
Distinguish as:
1) Operation-wide issue
2) Compartmentalized issue

FINANCIAL
INTEGRITY
EAF Procedures
Serious

Failure to fully explain and
document expenses on the
EAF. Failure to ensure that
funds are available prior to
approval of the EAF.

1) Operation-wide issue –
Operational managers will
implement corrective action and
actively ensure that all
operational expenses are properly
documented. Operational
managers will ensure that all
operational personnel are given
additional training in the
requirements of properly
documenting expenses.
2) Compartmentalized issue –
Operational managers will
implement corrective action and
actively ensure that all
operational expenses are properly
documented. Operational
managers will ensure that
operational personnel associated
with the problem are given
additional training in the
requirements of properly
documenting expenses.

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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

Severe

Failure to get expense
authorization in a timely
manner and/or properly
document expenses on the
EAF. Failure to ensure that
funds are available prior to
expenditure.

1) Operation-wide issue – The
SAC will implement corrective
action and actively ensure that all
operational expenses are properly
documented. The SAC will
ensure that all operational
managers and personnel are
given additional training in the
requirements of properly
documenting expenses.
2) Compartmentalized issue –
The SAC will implement
corrective action and actively
ensure that all operational
expenses are properly
documented. The SAC will
ensure that operational managers
and personnel associated with the
problem are given additional
training in the requirements of
properly documenting expenses.

Critical

Failure to get expense
authorization and/or document
expenses on the EAF. Having
expenditures in excess of
available funding.

The SAC will suspend all
operational expenditures and
report the issue to the
Undercover Operations Unit.
The SAC will forward a
memorandum of explanation to
the Director of OI (through the
Undercover Operations Unit)
with a request for retroactive
approval of expenditures. The
SAC will ensure that operational
personnel have implemented
corrective action and are actively
controlling all operational
expenses prior to allowing
expenditures to recommence.

Failure to fully explain and
document POI/POE on the
ICE Form 73-293 and
associated EAF. Failure to
properly ensure that funds are
available prior to approval of
the ICE Form 73-293 and

1) Operation-wide issue –
Operational managers will
implement corrective action and
actively ensure that all
operational POI/POE expenses
are properly documented.
Operational managers will ensure

POI/POE Procedures
Serious

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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

associated EAF.

that all operational personnel are
given additional training in the
requirements of properly
documenting POI/POE expenses.
2) Compartmentalized issue –
Operational managers will
implement corrective action and
actively ensure that all
operational POI/POE expenses
are properly documented.
Operational managers will ensure
that operational personnel
associated with the problem are
given additional training in the
requirements of properly
documenting POI/POE expenses.

Severe

Failures to get timely
authorization of POI/POE on
ICE Form 73-293. Failure to
properly ensure that funds are
available prior to expenditure
through the use of the
associated EAF.

1) Operation-wide issue – The
SAC will implement corrective
action and actively ensure that all
operational POI/POE expenses
are properly documented. The
SAC will ensure that all
operational managers and
personnel are given additional
training in the requirements of
properly documenting POI/POE
expenses.
2) Compartmentalized issue –
The SAC will implement
corrective action and actively
ensure that all operational
POI/POE expenses are properly
documented. The SAC will
ensure that operational managers
and personnel associated with the
problem are given additional
training in the requirements of
properly documenting POI/POE
expenses.

Critical

Failure to get POI/POE
expense authorization and/or
document expenses on ICE
Form 73-293 and associated
EAF. Having POI/ POE
expenditures in excess of

The SAC will suspend all
operational POI/POE
expenditures and report the issue
to the Undercover Operations
Unit. The SAC will forward a
memorandum of explanation to

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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

available funding.

the Director of OI (through the
Undercover Operations Unit)
with a request for retroactive
approval of POI/POE
expenditures. The SAC will
ensure that operational personnel
have implemented corrective
action and are actively
controlling all operational
POI/POE expenses prior to
allowing POI/POE expenditures
to recommence.

Serious

Failure to fully explain and
document travel expenses on
travel voucher and associated
EAF. Failure to properly
ensure that funds are available
prior to approval of travel
authorizations and associated
EAF.

1) Operation-wide issue –
Operational managers will
implement corrective action and
actively ensure that all
operational travel expenses are
properly documented.
Operational managers will ensure
that all operational personnel are
given additional training in the
requirements of properly
documenting travel expenses.
2) Compartmentalized issue –
Operational managers will
implement corrective action and
actively ensure that all
operational travel expenses are
properly documented.
Operational managers will ensure
that operational personnel
associated with the problem are
given additional training in the
requirements of properly
documenting travel expenses.

Severe

Failure to get timely travel
expense authorization. Failure
to properly document travel
expenses on the travel
voucher. Failure to properly
ensure that funds are available
prior to approval of travel
voucher and associated EAF.

1) Operation-wide issue – The
SAC will implement corrective
action and actively ensure that all
operational travel expenses are
properly documented. The SAC
will ensure that all operational
managers and personnel are
given additional training in the

Travel Expense
Procedures

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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

requirements of properly
documenting travel expenses.
2) Compartmentalized issue –
The SAC will implement
corrective action and actively
ensure that all operational travel
expenses are properly
documented. The SAC will
ensure that operational managers
and personnel associated with the
problem are given additional
training in the requirements of
properly documenting travel
expenses.
Critical

Failure to get travel expense
authorization and/or failure to
document travel expenses on
travel voucher. Having travel
expenditures in excess of
available funding.

The SAC will suspend all
operational travel and report the
issue to the Undercover
Operations Unit. The SAC will
forward a memorandum of
explanation to the Director of OI
(through the Undercover
Operations Unit) with a request
for retroactive approval of travel
expenditures. The SAC will
ensure that operational personnel
have implemented corrective
action and are actively
controlling all operational travel
expenses prior to allowing travel
expenditures to recommence.
Distinguish as:
1) Operation-wide issue
2) Compartmentalized issue

INVESTIGATIVE

Undercover
Investigative Activity
Serious

Operational investigation that
has no undercover activity or
nexus to undercover activity.

Operational managers will
remove the investigation from
the operation and ensure that no
operational funds are expended
related to the investigation.

Severe

Numerous operational
investigations that have no
undercover activity or nexus to
undercover activity.

1) Operation-wide issue – SAC
will ensure the removal of the
investigations from the operation
and ensure that no operational

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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

funds are expended related to the
investigations. The SAC should
implement immediate corrective
action to ensure that
investigations that have no
undercover activity or nexus to
the undercover activity are not
placed under the operation.
2) Compartmentalized issue –
Operational management will
remove the investigations from
the operation and ensure that no
operational funds are expended
related to the investigations.
Operational management should
implement immediate corrective
action to ensure that
investigations that have no
undercover activity or nexus to
the undercover activity are not
placed under the operation.
Severe

An operational investigation
that includes a sensitive
circumstance that is outside
the scope of the operation’s
authorized DHS and/or ICE
sensitive circumstances.

The SAC will ensure the
immediate suspension of the
particular investigation and
associated investigative activity.
The SAC will immediately
forward a memorandum seeking
exigent approval for the sensitive
circumstances involved and the
resumption of the investigation
from the Director of OI (through
the Undercover Operations Unit).
The SAC should implement
immediate corrective action to
ensure that investigations are not
conducted without the
appropriate authorization for any
DHS and/or ICE sensitive
circumstances involved.

Critical

Numerous operational
investigations that include
sensitive circumstances that
are outside the scope of the
operation’s authorized DHS
and/or ICE sensitive

The SAC will ensure the
immediate suspension of the
investigations and associated
investigative activity. The SAC
will immediately forward a
memorandum of explanation

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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

circumstances.

including a request for exigent
approval for the sensitive
circumstances involved and the
resumption of the investigations
from the Director of OI (through
the Undercover Operations Unit).
The SAC will implement and
document immediate corrective
action to ensure that
investigations are not conducted
without the appropriate
authorization for any DHS and/or
ICE sensitive circumstances
involved.

Critical

None of the operational
investigations have undercover
activity or a nexus to the
undercover activity. There is
no reasonable likelihood of
future undercover activity.

The SAC should immediately
implement certified undercover
operation closing procedures as
defined in Chapter 14 of the
Undercover Operations
Handbook.

Critical

Operational activity that is
outside the scope of the
statutory authority of the
certified undercover operation.

The SAC will ensure the
immediate suspension of all
activity associated with the
breach of statutory authority.
The SAC will immediately
forward a memorandum of
explanation to Director of OI
(through the Undercover
Operations Unit). The Director
of OI will take appropriate
corrective action.

Failure to exercise appropriate
management control over the
operational activity at the
Group Supervisor (first-line
supervisor) level

The Administrative Overseer
(ASAC or higher) should take
immediate corrective action as
well as ensure that appropriate
training is provided to
operational first-line managers.
The Administrative Overseer
should ensure that operational
managers (first-line supervisors)
have full knowledge and
understanding of the policies and

OPERATIONAL
MANAGEMENT
Serious

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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

procedures for administering a
certified undercover operation.
Severe

Failure to exercise appropriate
management control over
operational activity at the
second-line (ASAC and
higher) level.

The SAC should take immediate
corrective action as well as
ensure that appropriate training is
provided to operational
managers. The SAC should
ensure that operational managers
have full knowledge and
understanding of the policies and
procedures for administering a
certified undercover operation.

Critical

Failure to exercise appropriate
management control over
operational activity at the SAC
level.

The Director of OI should
suspend all operational activity.
The Director of OI should take
immediate corrective action and
ensure that the SAC and
operational managers have full
knowledge and understanding of
the policies and procedures for
administering a certified
undercover operation prior to
authorizing recommencement of
operational activity.

OTHER ISSUES
Expending
Operational Funds for
other than Necessary
and Reasonable items

Note: All operational expenses
should be documented in such
a way that, upon review, the
documentation would lead a
reasonable law enforcement
officer to conclude that the
expenditures were necessary
and reasonable for the conduct
of the operation.

Critical

Purchases/expenses that are
not necessary and reasonable
for the conduct of the
undercover operation.

The SAC should suspend
expenditure authority at the level
of the offending authorizations
until such time as remedial
training has been conducted
regarding the definition and
requirements of “necessary and
reasonable for the conduct of the
operation.”

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COMPONENT AND
CONDITION

EXPLANATION
OF ISSUE

CORRECTIVE
ACTIONS

Leased Vehicles
Serious

Leased vehicles are used for
non-operational requirements
on an intermittent basis (other
than emergency situations).

The SAC will ensure that policy
compliance is enforced and that
termination of the vehicles’ lease
be considered.

Severe

Leased vehicles are used for
non-operational requirements
on a regular basis.

The SAC will ensure that policy
compliance is enforced and that
the vehicles’ lease is terminated

Critical

Leased vehicles are used for
The Director of OI will ensure
general SAC office duties on a that all operational vehicle leases
daily basis.
are terminated. No new leases
will be authorized unless specific
SAC office and operational
management controls regarding
the use of leased vehicles are
developed and implemented.

Leased Space
Critical

Leased space is used for
purposes other than the
conduct of the operation (other
than emergency situations or
written approval from the
Assistant Secretary).

The SAC will ensure that policy
compliance is enforced across
the operation. The lease may be
terminated.

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Appendix G

GLOSSARY
The following definitions are provided for the purposes of the Undercover Operations
Handbook and as additional explanation; as such, they carry the weight of policy.
Administrative Overseer: The SAC-appointed second-line supervisor (ASAC or
higher) serving as the primary decision-maker for matters related to the administration
and oversight of a certified undercover operation. This position is mandatory in SAC
offices that maintain/conduct certified undercover operations.
Agent or ICE Agent: The term Agent or ICE Agent refers to any ICE OI Special Agent
or to any other ICE officer or federal, state, or local law enforcement officer working
directly with and under the policies of OI on an undercover investigation.
Appropriate Federal Prosecutor: The U.S. Attorney from the jurisdiction where
operational cases are reasonably expected to be prosecuted, including an AUSA from that
office. This can also be a supervisory trial attorney in DOJ’s Criminal Division at
headquarters.
Appropriated Funds: U.S. Government funds appropriated by Congress for the conduct
of Governments business. For the purposes of certified undercover operations,
appropriated funds fall into two categories:
•

CUC-Appropriated Funds – these are statutory authorized funds controlled by the
Undercover Operations Unit that may be used only for necessary and reasonable
expenses for the conduct of certified undercover operations. These funds are
distributed to certified undercover operations with no fiscal year expiration. The
funds stay with the operation until 1) they are expended by the operation in
accordance with the allocation budget plan; 2) they are recalled by Headquarters;
or 3) the operation closes.

•

Other Appropriated Funds – these are all other funds that are not CUCAppropriated Funds. These funds are generally year-end funds and must be
expended prior to the end of the fiscal year. These include, but are not limited to,
Special Operations funds (i.e., Title III and POI/POE), SAC funds, and other
agency funds (e.g., HIDTA).

All funds expended in furtherance of a certified undercover operation, no matter the
source, must be recorded in the operation’s CUFFS records.
Budget: See Six-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan.
Business: See Proprietary Undercover Business.

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Business/Purchase Exemption: This term refers to 8 U.S.C. § 1363a(a)(1) & (2) and 19
U.S.C. § 2081(a)(1)(A) & (B), which allow undercover operations and their proprietary
businesses the ability to operate on a commercial basis and to purchase property,
buildings, and other facilities and to lease space without compliance with FAR or the
provisions of 31 U.S.C. relating to Government-owned corporations. If an operation
seeks to purchase or lease space or acquire property outside FAR, then the
Business/Purchase Exemption is necessary.
When used in conjunction with the Use of Proceeds Exemption (8 U.S.C. § 1363a(a)(4)
and 19 U.S.C. § 2081(a)(3)), an undercover operation can use proceeds to establish a
proprietary business and to purchase or lease necessary and reasonable goods and
services related to the operation without compliance with FAR.
Business Transaction: A purchase, sale, or other transaction involving items or services
in furtherance of undercover activity or a certified undercover operation.
Certified Undercover Fundamental Financial System (CUFFS): The automated
financial record-keeping system maintained to record all the financial transactions of a
certified undercover operation. This term includes the documents and files (paper and
electronic) associated with the certified undercover operation’s record-keeping system.
Certified Undercover Operation: An undercover operation that has received written
certification from the Assistant Secretary or his or her designee (Director of OI) that any
action under one or more of the exemptions contained in 8 U.S.C. § 1363a and/or 19
U.S.C. § 2081 are necessary for the conduct of the operation. This can include the
authorization for investigations that include sensitive circumstances. A certified
undercover operation is instituted principally to establish a long-term activity-based
infrastructure to provide support and authenticity for other close-ended target,
organization, or system-specific undercover activities.
Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act (CAFRA) of 2000: (Contact the Asset Forfeiture
Unit for the current policy and procedures.)
Commissions: Any monies or other financial compensations that are:
•

retained by, or paid to, a source of information (compensation paid to an
informant in the form of commissions, points, brokerage fees, and monies of a
similar nature will collectively be referred to as “commissions”); or

•

retained by, or paid to, a potential target of an investigation; and

•

paid for, or derived from, criminal activities (proceeds).

Confidential Informant: A Confidential Informant is an individual who:
•

is a source of information;

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•

has been properly documented according to current OI policies on informants;

•

works under the direction and control of an authorized representative of a federal
law enforcement agency; and

•

is not a sworn law enforcement officer acting solely in an official capacity.

Also referred to as “Source of Information” and “Cooperating Individual.”
Cooperating Individual: See Confidential Informant.
Credit/Debit Card:
•

Overt Credit/Debit Card – A credit card issued as a U.S. Government credit card
for overt purchases of $2,500 or less, under the provisions of FAR, utilizing funds
from an undercover operation.

•

Undercover Credit/Debit Card – A credit card issued in a fictitious personal or
corporate name used for operational-related transactions in support of an
undercover activity or undercover operation.

•

Personal Undercover Credit/Debit Card – A credit card issued in a fictitious
personal name used for support of a personal undercover identity. This card is
issued to the undercover operative and can be used for business transactions or for
personal transactions to strengthen an undercover identity.

CUFFS Administrator (Record-Keeper): The CUFFS Administrator is an ICE OI
employee who maintains the books and records of a certified undercover operation.
Federal law requires that the person accountable for financial records of the U.S.
Government be a Federal Government employee. The CUFFS Administrator must also
be an OI employee. The Director of OI may waive this requirement on a case-by-case
basis.
Debit Card: See Credit/Debit Card.
Emergency Circumstances: “Emergency circumstances” are defined as those instances
where:
•

events in an investigation require an immediate or instantaneous response by
investigators; and

•

there will be serious negative consequences of a delayed response, such as:
o the delay could place any individual in jeopardy of serious injury or death;
o the delay would prevent or unduly delay agents from interdicting the

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introduction of controlled substances or other prohibited articles that represent
a public safety threat into the commerce of the United States;
o the delay would prevent or unduly delay agents from interdicting the unlawful
import/export of munitions, weapons, hazardous materials, precursor
chemicals, nuclear or missile proliferation technology or materials, or other
dangerous items; or
o the delay would have a negative impact on national security or critical foreign
policy issues.
Entrapment: A defense to a criminal charge, on the theory that “Government agents
may not originate a criminal design, implant in an innocent person’s mind the disposition
to commit a criminal act, and then induce commission of the crime so that the
Government may prosecute.” Jacobson v. United States, 503 U.S. 540, 548 (1992). A
valid entrapment defense has two related elements:
•

government inducement of the crime, and

•

the defendant’s lack of predisposition to engage in the criminal conduct.
Mathews v. United States, 485 U.S. 58, 63 (1988). Of the two elements,
predisposition is by far the more important.

Exigent Circumstances: “Exigent circumstances” are defined as those instances where:
•

events in an investigation require a rapid or prompt response by investigators; and

•

there will be definitive negative consequences of a delayed response, such as:
o the delay would seriously impede the investigation to the extent that violators
may not be apprehended; or
o the delay would cause the loss of evidence or information critical to the
continuation of the investigation or the successful prosecution of suspects.

Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR): FAR are those regulations that govern the
normal procurement procedures that agencies of the U.S. Government must follow when
acquiring property or leasing space. Undercover operations conducted by OI may be
specifically exempted from these requirements if they are certified under the provisions
of 8 U.S.C. § 1363a(a)(1) & (2) and 19 U.S.C. § 2081(a)(1)(A) & (B) and such
acquisition outside FAR is necessary to protect the covertness and security of the
operation. This exemption is known as the business/purchase exemption.
Joint Undercover Operation: A joint certified undercover operation in which ICE and
another law enforcement agency that is using their own certified undercover operation are
investigating the same targets and have agreed to work jointly (may include splitting
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proceeds), and are each providing manpower or other resources in support of an
investigation/operation that involves undercover activity, regardless of which agency
initiated the investigation.
When participating in joint undercover operations, managers should consider that the
exemptions granted under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a can be applied only to
the detection and prosecution of offenses within the jurisdiction of the Secretary of
Homeland Security. Accordingly, joint undercover investigations that take advantage of
the exemptions must have a reasonable likelihood of disclosing a violation of law
enforced by ICE.
If participation by OI is limited to furnishing investigative support, such as conducting
surveillance or providing technical assistance, then it does not constitute a joint
undercover operation.
Money Laundering Points: Any monies or other financial compensations that:
•

are retained by, or paid to, the undercover operation by a potential target or source
of an investigation; or

•

are paid by the undercover operation to a potential target or source of an
investigation; and

•

constitute a percentage paid (money laundering fee) for, or derived from, money
laundering activities.

Nexus to Undercover Activities: A direct link to an open undercover investigation and
the undercover activity of that investigation.
All investigations placed under a certified undercover operation MUST have undercover
activity or a direct nexus to the operation’s undercover activity.
Necessary and Reasonable
•

Necessary expenses are defined as those expenses that are directly related to the
purposes and objectives of the undercover investigative operation (e.g., an
undercover cellular phone for an undercover agent would be a necessary expense,
whereas a cellular phone for every agent in the SAC office would not be a
necessary operational expense).

•

Reasonable expenses are defined as those expenses which, given the
circumstances of the undercover operation, are logical, judicious, and justifiable
(e.g., if an operation needs a sedan for general surveillance and undercover
security, leasing a $20,000 Toyota Camry would be a reasonable expense,
whereas leasing a $45,000 Porsche Boxster would not be a reasonable expense).

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Otherwise Illegal Activity: Except when authorized pursuant to ICE policy and this
Handbook, no undercover operative will participate in any activity that would constitute a
crime under federal, state, or local law if engaged in by a private person acting without
authorization. For the purposes of this Handbook, such activity is referred to as an
“otherwise illegal activity.”
Personal Assistance Agreement (PAA): An agreement between a Cooperating
Individual (CI) and a SAC that details the general activities and responsibilities expected
of the CI as well as the limitations placed on his or her behavior. The agreement may
also state the amounts (including commissions) and methods of compensation that the CI
could expect to receive if the CI otherwise adheres to the provisions of the agreement.
PAAs require the approval of the Unit Chief, Investigative Support Unit. (Note: Policy
related to PAAs and CIs is the purview of the ISU, ISD.)
Personal Transaction: A purchase, sale, or other transaction involving items or services
not related to ICE or official business.
Proceeds: Funds acquired from non-Government sources during the course of a certified
undercover operation, including, but not limited to:
•

the gross income and net profits from undercover endeavors (including money
laundering “points” received);

•

any tangible assets received from the targets of an investigation as a result of
undercover endeavors;

•

violator/trafficker-directed funds (those funds or monetary instruments provided
by a violator to the undercover operation with the understanding that the funds are
to be used in a specific way for the benefit of the violator or to further the illegal
activity);

•

interest from operational bank accounts;

•

funds received for sales by undercover businesses;

•

monies received by an undercover agent or CI for illegal services; and

•

salaries paid to undercover agents by a third party.

At the time they are taken in, proceeds are considered U.S. Government funds and are
subject to the same controls and procedures applicable to appropriated funds except as
provided by the exemptions in 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8 U.S.C. § 1363a. Tangible assets
(other than money) acquired during the course of a certified undercover operation, such
as real estate, conveyances, or property are not considered proceeds. These assets will be
recorded in the property records of the operation.

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Note: Care must be taken to ensure that funds that constitute a seizure are not
designated as proceeds. Proceeds come to a certified undercover operation in the course
of undercover activity. As a general rule, funds that come into government control as a
result of an enforcement action (search, arrest) would not be considered proceeds.
Property Officer: The ICE OI employee designated to control access to all property for
which a certified undercover operation is accountable. Property will not be available to
be signed in or out without the authorization by the Property Officer or designee.
Proprietary Undercover Business: A sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or
other business entity operated on a commercial basis, which is owned, controlled, or
operated wholly or in part on behalf of ICE and whose relationship with ICE is concealed
from third parties. A certified undercover operation is required in order to operate a
proprietary undercover business. Proprietary undercover businesses fall into one of two
categories: those businesses that will not seek to do business with the general public and
those businesses that will do business with the general public.
As applied to ICE undercover operations, the definition of operating “on a commercial
basis” includes activities by undercover operatives who engage only in otherwise illegal
business transactions, as well as activities of undercover operatives who engage in both
legal and otherwise illegal business transactions.
•

Proprietary undercover business that will not seek to do business with the general
public.
o An undercover business or undercover activity that is established exclusively
to engage in business transactions with targets of investigation to support an
illegal activity and will not seek to do business with the general public is
considered a proprietary business, as defined under 19 U.S.C. § 2081 and 8
U.S.C. § 1363a. However, although this is not considered sensitive according
to the DHS definition of sensitive circumstances, this is considered an ICE
sensitive circumstance. (For example, a cooperating individual or undercover
agent who is established in an apartment to provide the service of illegally
exporting munitions would be considered a proprietary undercover business.)
This will enable the SAC to seek the business/purchase exemption required to
acquire services and property, as well as perform other necessary transactions
in a covert manner outside FAR.

•

Proprietary undercover business that will do business with the general public.
o An undercover business or undercover activities that is established to engage
in both legal and otherwise illegal transactions and which may engage in
business with the general public is considered DHS sensitive. A proprietary
business that will engage in business with the general public, as part of its
covert façade, has additional liability connected with that activity.
Precautionary steps to protect the general public and interests of ICE must be

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undertaken by the undercover operation’s management to ensure that the
liability issues generated by the activity are addressed. The type of
proprietary undercover business that engages in business with the general
public is discouraged but not prohibited.
o A detailed plan of the activity of the undercover business must be presented to
the DHS URC prior to commencement of such operational activity.
Purchase Exemption: See Business/Purchase Exemption.
Recoverable Funds: U.S. Government funds used in money laundering investigations
that are given to targets of an investigation in order for that target to launder the funds for
a certified undercover operation. These funds are provided through the Undercover
Operations Unit and are returned in full to headquarters after the need for the funds has
expired. “Proceeds for Laundering” refers to certified undercover operations proceeds
that are designated, approved, and used as recoverable funds.
Sensitive Circumstances Related to Undercover Activity: DHS and ICE
DHS Sensitive Circumstances
DHS sensitive circumstances are present if there is a reasonable expectation that the
undercover activity, investigation, or operation will involve:
•

an investigation of possible criminal conduct by any elected or official candidate
for a federal, state, or local judicial, legislative, or executive branch post or any
appointed or official nominee for a senior executive position of trust in a federal,
state, or local governmental entity or political subdivision thereof;

•

an investigation of any public official at the federal, state, or local level in any
matter involving methodical and systematic corruption of any governmental
function;

•

an investigation of possible criminal conduct by any foreign official or
government, religious organization, political organization, or the news media;

•

any investigative activity having a significant effect on, or a significant intrusion
into, the legitimate operation of a federal, state, or local governmental entity;

•

establishing, acquiring, or using an undercover proprietary business which will be
conducting business with the general public (i.e., storefront open to the public),
including the establishment of a publicly-accessible Internet website or “virtual
store” that offers any goods or services;

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•

an undercover operative who will be a major participant in the scheme to move or
transport illegal aliens across an international border or who will participate in the
operation of an illegal alien stash house;

•

providing goods or services that are essential to the commission of a crime, but
are reasonably unavailable to a subject of the investigation except from the U.S.
Government;

•

activity that is proscribed by federal, state, or local law as a felony or that is
otherwise a serious crime, but which does not include:
o the purchase of stolen or contraband goods;
o the purchase of illegal and/or fraudulent immigration documents;
o the delivery, sale, use, ownership, or possession by the government of
contraband or stolen property whose ownership cannot be determined;
o the controlled delivery of drugs or other contraband that will not enter the
commerce of the United States;
o the domestic transportation or concealment of illegal aliens when the
undercover operative (see definition) does not have substantial control or
direction of the scheme involving the domestic transportation or concealment
of illegal aliens;
o the payments of bribes that are not included in the other sensitive
circumstances; or
o the making of false representations to third parties in the concealment of
personal identity or the true ownership of a proprietary business (this
exception does not include any statement under oath or the penalties of
perjury;

•

activity involving a purported legal marriage between an undercover operative
and a target or third party; or a marriage sting operation whereby an undercover
operative proffers marriage to a target or third party;

•

a significant risk that an undercover operative will be arrested or will supply false
testimony or false documentation in an official government legal or administrative
proceeding;

•

an undercover operative who will be required to give a sworn statement or
testimony in any official government judicial or administrative proceeding in an
undercover capacity;

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•

an undercover operative who will attend a meeting or participate in
communications between an individual and his or her lawyer where the purpose
of the meeting or communication involves the defense of any person on criminal
charges or involves civil or administrative proceedings to which the United States
may be a party; or an undercover operative who will act as a lawyer and meet
and/or communicate with purported clients;

•

a significant risk that a third party will enter into a professional or confidential
relationship with an undercover operative who is acting as an attorney, physician,
psychologist, member of the clergy, spouse, member of the news media, or other
person who is under a legal obligation of confidentiality;

•

an undercover request to an attorney, physician, psychologist, member of the
clergy, or other person for information that would ordinarily be privileged or to a
member of the news media concerning an individual with whom the news person
is known to have a professional or confidential relationship that would be treated
as privileged;

•

a significant risk of violence, physical injury to individuals, or financial loss to an
innocent individual/third party;

•

activities that could result in significant claims against the United States arising in
tort, contract, or property law, or for compensation for the “taking” of property;

•

untrue representations by a person participating in the undercover investigation
concerning the activities or involvement of any innocent third person without that
individual”s knowledge or consent, and there is a reasonable possibility that the
false or misleading representations may cause significant embarrassment or
physical or financial harm to the third person;

•

a significant part of the undercover operation that will be conducted substantially
outside the United States. However, an undercover investigation will not be
considered to involve a sensitive circumstance if the only extraterritorial conduct
consists of minimal contacts within the immediate border areas of Canada and
Mexico; and
o any such minimal contacts with subjects are necessary to maintain the
credibility, cover, or safety of the undercover employee or cooperating
individual; or
o any such minimal contacts with persons other than the subjects are solely for
information gathering purposes, do not involve the use of recording or
broadcasting devices, occur under circumstances in which no person or entity
has a reasonable expectation of privacy, and none of the other sensitive
circumstances described in other sections of these guidelines are present; or

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o the activity will involve the direct participation of the appropriate foreign law
enforcement agency.
Note: These DHS sensitive circumstances may be superseded by new DHS-issued
sensitive circumstances.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Sensitive Circumstances
In addition to the DHS sensitive circumstances, the following are also considered
sensitive for the conduct of ICE investigations:
•

transmittal of weapons or munitions list articles, hazardous materials, or nuclear
or biological materials beyond the immediate control of ICE agents;

•

investigations and/or operations that continue for more than 1 year beyond the
first undercover activity;

•

indemnification/hold-harmless agreements in which the U.S. Government is
granting indemnification to a third party (Absent express statutory authority to the
contrary, the U.S. Government may not enter into an agreement to indemnify
where the Government’s liability is indefinite, indeterminate, or potentially
unlimited);

•

third-party funding sources (funding provided by other federal sources, such as
High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas or Organized Crime Drug Enforcement
Task Forces, is not third-party funding. The acceptance of funding or property
from private parties is proper only under very strict guidelines and only after DHS
approval);

•

establishing, acquiring, or using an undercover proprietary business that will not
seek to conduct business with the general public (e.g., a trucking company that
does business only with targets), including the establishment of a limited access
Internet website that offers any goods or services;

•

establishment of an undercover off-site location with the exception of post office
boxes and mail drops;

•

the undercover operation will require the use of proceeds generated by the
undercover operation to offset necessary and reasonable expenses incurred in the
operation of the proprietary business;

•

the undercover operation will require the use of the statutory exemptions under 19
U.S.C. § 2081 and/or 8 U.S.C. § 1363a; and

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•

the undercover operation will establish an undercover bank (or other financial
institution) account controlled by ICE into which appropriated funds or proceeds
will be deposited.

Only the activities of Government employees determine sensitive circumstances.
However, under ICE policy, activities of informants, which would constitute sensitive
circumstances, will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis in order to make a determination
as to whether they should be treated as sensitive circumstances.
Note: These lists (DHS and ICE Sensitive Circumstances) are not all-inclusive. Any
activity which presents, or has the potential for presenting, serious legal, ethical, or
policy issues should be reviewed and, if considered sensitive, handled in accordance with
the provisions of this Handbook.
Six-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan: This is the 6-month operating
expenditure limit of a certified undercover operation; it is included in the reauthorization
package submitted to and reviewed by the URC and ultimately authorized by the Director
of OI as part of the certification process.
Source of Information: See Confidential Informant.
Sweep Account: A sweep account is an account set up at a bank or other financial
institution where the funds are automatically managed between a primary cash account
and secondary investment accounts. Sweep accounts can be used to protect the
operation’s bank deposits. Uninsured deposited funds (bank deposit balances in excess
of $100,000) are moved into secure financial instruments and returned as needed. To
ensure the safety of undercover operation deposits, funds should be swept into U.S.
Treasury obligations versus publicly held corporation bonds. The benefits of a sweep
account include the following: 1) no red flags are raised since the same safeguard
technique is used by private industry (as opposed to Federal Reserve collateral); 2) funds
are secured in the event that the bank fails during normal business hours (the Federal
Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) takes over and completes the day’s transactions
including sweeps); and 3) a higher rate of interest is earned.
Distributing and maintaining balances of less than $100,000 in multiple accounts with the
same financial institution does not afford protection of the funds, unless an undercover
operation has a unique EIN assigned to each account. The FDIC insurance program does
not determine coverage on a per account basis. Multiple account balances would be
added together and insured up to a total of $100,000 per financial institution. In light of
these facts, the use of sweep accounts shall be used as appropriate.
Undercover Activity: Any investigative activity involving the use of undercover
resources and techniques, including the use of an undercover operative of ICE or other
federal, state, or local law enforcement organization working with ICE. Undercover
operative activity includes Internet-based, limited, moderate, and deep undercover
activity.
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•

Internet-Based Undercover Activity: Undercover activity that involves:
o undercover contact via the Internet or email with no face-to-face contact; or
o undercover surfing of the Internet.
This type of undercover activity does not require completion of the Undercover
Operations Unit-sponsored UCOS and can be approved at the SAC level
according to local procedures.

•

Limited Undercover Activity: An assignment, with or without fictitious
identification, that requires:
o no change in appearance or personal habits and limited contact with violators
or potential violators, such as undercover telephone calls or performing
secondary duties at a storefront that requires little or no direct contact with
suspects. This includes undercover purchases in public places (e.g., purchases
of counterfeit merchandise from a store).
This type of undercover activity does not require completion of UCOS and can be
approved at the SAC level according to local procedures.

•

Moderate Undercover Activity: An assignment that involves:
o assuming a fictitious identity that may or may not involve a change in
appearance or personal habits; and
o short-duration, face-to-face contacts with violators or potential violators at an
ICE-controlled covert location or an alternate location; and
o possible frequent and repetitious contact with the same violators or potential
violators in covert locations, over an extended period of time, during which
the undercover operative maintains an independence from the targeted group;
and
o possible regular meetings with violators or potential violators with the
intention of the assignment continuing for a period of greater than 6 months.
This type of undercover activity requires completion of UCOS.

•

Deep Undercover Activity: A long-term undercover assignment that also
involves:
o assuming a fictitious identity with significant changes in appearance or
personal habits in order to infiltrate a criminal organization; and
o working in a covert location or in a business enterprise operated by the
targeted group or any other situation that requires regular and continuous faceto-face contacts with the violators or potential violators. Working in these
isolated circumstances requires the use of a Contact Agent.

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This type of undercover activity requires completion of UCOS.
Note: All investigations placed under a certified undercover operation MUST have
undercover activity or a direct nexus to the operation’s undercover activity.
Undercover Identification: Any identification document issued in a fictitious name or
alias, including official documents, whether counterfeit or genuine, created by any
agency of the federal, state, or local government, or by a bank or financial institution, or
any credit card, license, or other document which is offered as proof of a fictitious
identity. All undercover identification issued to ICE employees is considered the
property of ICE, must be inventoried on an annual basis, and must be immediately
surrendered upon request.
Undercover Investigation: An investigation involving any undercover activity. This
can take place over a period of time. Undercover activity involving any DHS or ICE
sensitive circumstances requires that the investigation be placed under a certified
undercover operation, regardless of the type or number of undercover contacts involved.
Undercover Liaison Coordinators:
•

Field Undercover Liaison Coordinator (ULC): The Special Agent experienced in
undercover work who has volunteered and successfully completed the
Undercover Operations Unit-sponsored ULCS. He or she will monitor, assist in
the debriefing, and make recommendations to the ASAC, Associate SAC, and
SAC for the selection of undercover operatives. Additionally, the ULC will act as
a consultant for undercover activities, as appropriate.

•

Headquarters Undercover Liaison Coordinator: The Program Manager who is an
experienced undercover operative with undercover managerial experience and
who is available for consultation with management and field coordinators on
problems related to undercover assignments. This individual is responsible for
coordinating field interventions and debriefings with licensed clinical
psychologists under contract to ICE as deemed necessary by management.

Undercover Operative: An undercover operative is most often an OI agent (or any
other ICE officer approved in writing by the Director of OI) acting in an undercover
capacity. An undercover operative may also be a law enforcement officer of another
federal, state, or local law enforcement agency who voluntarily works under the direction
and control of OI in a particular investigation. An undercover operative’s relationship
with law enforcement is concealed from third parties during the course of an investigative
operation.
Undercover Review Committee (URC): The URC is the body responsible for
reviewing proposals for undercover activities that involve DHS and/or ICE sensitive
circumstances. There are two URCs - the DHS URC and the ICE URC.

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DHS URC members:
•
•
•
•
•
•

DAD, ISD (Chairperson)
All ICE URC members
DHS representative
representative of any other affected DHS Agency,
representatives of the DOJ Criminal Division
any other federal government personnel as specified by the Director of OI.

ICE URC members:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•

DAD, ISD (Chairperson)
Assistant Directors, Operations (East and West).
DADs, National Security Investigations; Financial, Narcotics and Public Safety;
and Critical Infrastructure and Fraud.
Unit Chief, Arms and Strategic Technology Investigations
Unit Chief, Asset Forfeiture
Unit Chief, Commercial Fraud/Intellectual Property Rights
Unit Chief, Compliance Enforcement
Unit Chief, Contraband Smuggling
Unit Chief, Cornerstone/Financial Operations
Unit Chief, Cyber Crimes
Unit Chief, Forensic Document Laboratory
Unit Chief, Human Rights Violations/Public Safety
Unit Chief, Human Smuggling and Trafficking
Unit Chief, Identity and Benefits Fraud
Unit Chief, Investigative Support
Unit Chief, National Security Unit
Unit Chief, Special Operations
Unit Chief, Undercover Operations
Unit Chief, Worksite Enforcement/Critical Infrastructure Protection
Operations Chiefs, East and West
ICE Counsel
DEA representative (when Title 21 issues are involved)
Other ICE personnel specified by the Director of OI.

To promote consistency, ICE members of the URCs will be required to attend every
meeting of the URC. Substitutions are acceptable only when the principal is on leave or
away from the office on official business. No URC business will be conducted unless the
URC chairman finds that there is a quorum (a simple majority of the entire membership
of the URC).
Use of Proceeds Exemption: The term used to refer to 19 U.S.C. § 2081(a)(3) and
8 U.S.C. § 1363a(a)(4) that provides an undercover operation the ability to use proceeds
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to offset necessary and reasonable expenses incurred in the operation without regard to
31 U.S.C. § 3302, relating to the disposition of public monies.
•

Covert Expenditures: Necessary and reasonable expenditures incurred in direct
support of an investigation in which the identification of ICE as a party to the
transaction should reasonably be concealed from the vendor, third parties, or the
public in order to avoid compromising the covert operative, locations, or
activities. Covert expenditures are justified when a reasonable expectation exists
that an overt expenditure will compromise the covert operatives, location, or
activity. These expenditures are not subject to FAR and can be conducted outside
FAR using the business/purchase exemption.

•

Overt Expenditures: Necessary and reasonable expenditures incurred in direct
support of an investigation where it is not necessary to conceal the involvement of
ICE to avoid compromising a covert operative, location, or activity. These
expenditures are subject to FAR and must be conducted within the FAR
guidelines.

Violator/Trafficker-Directed Funds (Proceeds): Those funds or monetary instruments
provided by a violator to the undercover operation with the understanding that the funds
are to be used in a specific way for the benefit of the violator or to further the illegal
activity. These funds are considered proceeds and shall be treated as such.

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Appendix H

INDEX
This index is not all-inclusive and provides only significant terms. The chapters and
sections referenced below are those where the terms appear in noteworthy discussion.
Accounting
CUFFS
CUFFS Administrator (Record-Keeper) Responsibilities
QuickBooks
Additional Documents Required with Proposal
Administrative Overseer (CUC) (ASAC)
Role and Responsibilities
Agreements
Indemnification and Hold Harmless
Personal Assistance Agreements
Alias Identification (see Undercover Identification)
Alteration to Conveyances
Application for Undercover Operation
Format
Procedures
Who can make application for
Appropriate Federal Prosecutor
Appropriated Funds
Expenditure
Funding Sources
CUC Appropriated (no year funds)
Other
Proceeds
SAC Funds
Tracking
Approval of Expenditures
Approval levels
CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form (EAF)
Assistant Directors
Roles and Responsibilities
Assistant Secretary
Roles and Responsibilities
Audit of CUC Operation
Authority
Certification and Exemptions
Statutory Authority for CUC Ops
Backstopping
Bank Accounts

Sec 6.11
Sec 4.18
Sec 6.11, 7.1.1
Sec 5.5.3(2)
Sec 4.10
Sec 3.7.2
Sec 3.8
Sec 9.1
Sec 3.6
Sec 5.5
Sec 5.5.2
Sec 5.3, 5.5.3
Sec 5.2
Glossary
Sec 6.3
Sec 6.2, 6.3
Sec 6.24
Sec 6.24.2
Sec 6.24.5
Sec 6.24.1
Sec 6.24.4
Sec 6.2
Sec 6.18
Sec 6.17
App B
Sec 4.5
Sec 4.1
Sec 7.4.4
Sec 2.2.1
Sec 2.2, App A
Chap 9
Sec 6.14

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Operational
Individual (Personal)
CI/Cooperating Defendant Undercover Identification
Corporate
Credit cards (Undercover)
Operational (Corporate/Business)
Individual (Personal)
Federally-issued alias identification
Foreign government-issued alias identification
Individual (Personal)
State-issued alias identification
Back-Up Data for CUFFS
Bank Accounts
Foreign Bank Accounts
On-Line Access
Overt Bank Accounts (in the Name of OI)
Personal (Undercover)
Undercover Bank Accounts
Bank Accounts (Overt and Covert)
Foreign Bank Accounts
Individual Bank Accounts
Budget (Funds Allocation and Authorization Plan)
6-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan
CUC-Appropriated Funds Allocation
Business/Purchase Exemption
Case Agent (Roles and Responsibilities)
Cash Advances
Credit-Maintaining a Personal Financial History (Alias)
Certification and Exemptions
Misuse of
Certification Authority
Certified Undercover Fundamental Financial System (CUFFS)
Certified Undercover Operation
Application
Reauthorization
Closing Certified Undercover Operation
Closeout Audits
Closeout Report
Closing Certification
Intent to Close Memorandum
Commissions
PAA requirements
Paid to CIs
Confidential Informants (CIs)

Sec 6.14
Sec 9.2.1
Sec 9.1.1(1)
Sec 9.3
Sec 9.3
Sec 9.2.2
Sec 9.1.2
Sec 9.1.4
Sec 9.1
Sec 9.1.3
Sec 6.11.2
Sec 6.14
Sec 6.14.5
Sec 6.14.2
Sec 6.14.4
Sec 9.2.1
Sec 6.14
Sec 6.14
Sec 6.14.5
Sec 9.2.1
Sec 6.2.2
Sec 6.24.2
Sec 6.2.5, 6.19.1,
14.3.2(1)
Sec 4.14
Sec 6.7
Sec 9.2
Sec 2.2.1
Sec 2.2.2
Sec 2.2, 6.1
Sec 6.11
Sec 5.5
Sec 5.5.2(1)
Sec 5.5.2(2)
Chap 14
Sec 14.4
Sec 14.2
Sec 14.1
Sec 14.1
Glossary
Sec 3.8
Sec 6.8.1

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Advances to
PAA requirements
Transactions Involving
Confidentiality of Undercover Operations
Conveyances (Alterations to)
Contact Agent (Roles and Responsibilities)
Cover Agent (Roles and Responsibilities)
Corporate Backstopping
Employer Identification Number (EIN)
Services available from the Undercover Operations Unit
Corporate Backstopping-Undercover Bank Accounts
Corporate Undercover Credit Cards
Covert Purchases
FAR - Requirements
Credit History (Undercover)
Credit Cards (Undercover)
CUC-Appropriated Funds
CUC TECS Program Code
CUFFS
Back-Up Data
CUFFS Manager Administrator/Record-Keeper
QuickBooks
CUFFS Administrator
Roles and Responsibilities
Rotation
Separation of Duties
Training
Who Can Be A
CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form (EAF)
Currency Pick-Up Operations
Log
Deposit of Proceeds into the U.S. Treasury
Deputy Assistant Director, Investigative Services Division
DHS Sensitive Circumstances
DHS Undercover Review Committee
DHS Policy
Director, Office of Investigations
Documents
Additional Documents Required with Proposal
Removal/Copying by Undercover Operative
Electronic Documentation (Use of)
Emergency Approval
Entrapment

Sec 6.7.2
Sec 3.8
Sec 6.8
Sec 3.10
Sec 3.6
Sec 4.17
Sec 4.16
Sec 9.3
Sec 9.3
Sec 9.3
Sec 6.14, 9.3
Sec 9.3
Sec 6.19.1
Sec 6.2, 6.19,
Glossary
Sec 9.2, 9.3
Sec 6.13, 9.2.2
Sec 6.3, 6.24.2,
14.3.1(2)
Sec 5.9, 7.7
Glossary
Sec 6.11.2
Sec 4.18, 6.12
Sec 6.11
Sec 4.18, 6.12
Sec 4.18
Sec 4.18.1
Sec 4.19, 6.12.1
Sec 8.4
Sec 4.18
App B
Sec 6.9
Sec 6.9.1
Sec 6.5.4
Sec 4.4
Sec 2.4.1, Glossary
Sec 4.3.1, 5.5.4(2)
Sec 2.3
Sec 4.2
Sec 5.5.3(2)
Sec 3.5.3
Sec 2.4.3
Sec 5.8
Sec 3.4, Glossary

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Exemptions (Statutory)
Exigent Approval
Expenditures (CUC Operation)
Approval Levels
Authorization
CUFFS Expense/Advance Approval Form (EAF)
Exigent
Flow Chart
Necessary and Reasonable
Prohibited
Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)
Business/Purchase Exemption
Petty Cash Fund
Expenditure Levels
Purchases Outside FAR (Covert)
Purchases Under FAR (Overt)
Federally-Issued Undercover Identification
Field Review by the Undercover Operations Unit
Expenses Associated With
Field Undercover Liaison Coordinator
File Systems Requirements
Certified Undercover Operation
SAC Office
Undercover Liaison Coordinator
Undercover Operations Unit
Financial Records of a Certified Undercover Operation
Financial Reports (see Monthly Financial Reports)
First Class (Premium) Travel (Approval required)
Foreign Bank Accounts
Foreign Government-Issued Undercover Identification
Foreign Government Law Enforcement Funds
Deposited into Undercover Operation Bank Account
Forfeiture of Proceeds
Closing Operation
Limit on Amount of Proceeds Held
Ongoing Operation
Funding Sources
CUC-Appropriated Funds
Proceeds
Recoverable Funds
Request as Part of Proposal
Request for Distribution
Sources
Tracking in CUFFS
Use of CUC-Appropriated Funds

Sec 2.2.1
Sec 5.7
Sec 6.17, 6.18
Sec 6.2
App B
Sec 6.18.1
Sec 6.2.4
Sec 6.2.1
Sec 6.20
Sec 6.2, Glossary
Sec 6.19.1
Sec 6.6
Sec 6.17
Sec 6.2.5, 6.19.1
Sec 6.19.2
Sec 9.1.2
Sec 7.4
Sec 6.4.5
Sec 10.2
Sec 6.10
Sec 6.10.3
Sec 6.10.2
Sec 4.7, 10.1
Sec 6.10.1
Sec 6.11
Sec 7.1
Sec 6.22.2
Sec 6.14.5
Sec 9.1.4
Sec 6.15
Sec 14.3.1(1.1)
Sec 6.5.1
Sec 6.5.3, 14.3.1(1.1)
Sec 6.24
Sec 6.24.2
Sec 6.24.1
Sec 6.24.3, Glossary
Sec 6.24.2
Sec 6.24.2
Sec 6.24
Sec 6.11
Sec 6.3

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Gifts (Third-Party Offers)
Group Supervisor
CUC Lead/Administrative
Investigative
High-Risk Investments
Hold Harmless Agreements (Indemnification)
ICE Sensitive Circumstances
ICE Undercover Review Committee
Identification (Undercover/Alias)
Confidential Informant
Federally-Issued
Foreign Government-Issued
Individual
Private Industry-Issued
State-Issued
Illegal Activity (Otherwise)
Authorization to Engage in Otherwise Illegal Activity
General Authorization
Specific Authorization
Authorization of Unforeseen Otherwise Illegal Activity
Prohibitions
Violence that Results from Criminal Activity
Indemnification and Hold Harmless Agreements
Independent Audit of Undercover Business
Individual (Personal) Undercover Bank Accounts
Inducements
Authorization Requirements
Exceptions to Inducement Policy (Waiver)
Insurance
Automobile Insurance
Claims to Maintain Covertness
Other Insurance
Use of Private Insurance Within Undercover Operations
Inventory
Property Owned by a CUC Operation
Undercover Identification
Joint Undercover Operations
Lease Agreements
Approval requirements
Review by ICE Counsel
Leased Vehicles
Legal Guidance (Procedures for Obtaining)
Legal/Liability Issues
Liquidation of Assets
Closing Operations

Sec 3.7.1
Sec 4.11, 4.12
Sec 4.11
Sec 4.12
Sec 6.16.2(1)
Sec 3.7.2
Sec 2.4.2, Glossary
Sec 4.3.2, 5.5.4(1)
Sec 9.1
Sec 9.1.1(1)
Sec 9.1.2
Sec 9.1.4
Sec 9.1.1
Sec 9.1.5
Sec 9.1.3
Sec 3.2, 3.2.5
Sec 3.2.5
Sec 3.2.5(1)
Sec 3.2.6
Sec 3.2.3
Sec 3.3
Sec 3.7.2
Sec 6.20
Sec 9.2.1
Sec 3.4.1
Sec 3.4.2
Sec 3.9.1
Sec 3.9.3
Sec 3.9.2
Sec 3.9
Sec 7.8
Sec 7.9
Sec 5.12, Glossary
Sec 6.25
Sec 6.25
Sec 6.26
Sec 3.1
Chap 3
Sec 14.3

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Ongoing Operation

Sec 14.3

Logs
Pick-up Log
Primary Personnel Log
Property Log
Monthly Financial Reports (CUC Operation)
National Undercover Liaison Coordinator (ULC)
Necessary Expenses (Necessary and Reasonable)
Obtaining Legal Guidance
Oral Communications (Undercover Operative Recording)
Other Agencies
Reimbursement of
Joint Undercover Operations
Participation in Undercover Operations
Splitting Proceeds
Otherwise Illegal Activities (Participation in)
Overt Bank Accounts in the Name of OI
Overt Purchases (under FAR)
Payment of Overtime
Personal Assistance Agreement (PAA)
When One is Required
When One is Not Required
Personal Credit/Finance History
Personal (Individual) Undercover Credit Cards
Personal Undercover Identification
Control of
Federally-Issued
Foreign Government-Issued
State-Issued
Petty Cash Fund
Pick-Up (Currency)
Pick-Up Operations (Currency)
Pick-Ups (Log)
Transaction Approval
Position Titles (Savings Provision)
Primary Personnel Log
Proceeds
Control of
Expending (Use of)
For Laundering (Recoverable Funds)
Forfeiting (Seizure)
Limit of Proceeds Held by the Operation
Regulating the Amount of
Splitting (Other OI CUCs and Agencies)
Waiver for Limit on Amount Held

Sec 6.10.3
Sec 6.10.3
Sec 6.10.3
Sec 7.1
Sec 10.1
Sec 6.2.1, Glossary
Sec 3.1
Sec 3.5.2
Sec 6.4.1(2)
Sec 5.12
Sec 5.12
Sec 6.4.1(4)
Sec 3.2
Sec 6.14.4
Sec 6.19.2
Sec 6.4.4
Sec 3.8
Sec 3.8.1
Sec 3.8.2
Sec 9.2
Sec 9.2.2
Sec 9.1
Sec 9.1.6
Sec 9.1.2
Sec 9.1.4
Sec 9.1.3
Sec 6.6
Sec 6.9
Sec 6.9.1
Sec 6.9.2
Sec 4.20
Sec 6.10.3
Sec 6.24.1
Sec 6.4.1
Sec 6.4
Sec 6.24.3
Sec 6.5.3, 14.3.1(1.1)
Sec 6.5.1
Sec 6.5
Sec 6.4.1(3), 6.4.1(4)
Sec 6.5.1

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Program Code Assignment/Case Tracking (TECS)
Program Manager (CUC) Roles and Responsibilities
Prohibited Expenditures
Property
Property Inventories
Property Log
Proposal (Format)
Application and Reauthorization
Purchase Exemption (Business/Purchase Exemption)
Purchases Outside FAR (Covert)
Purchases Using FAR (Overt)
QuickBooks (CUFFS)
Reasonable Expenses (Necessary and Reasonable)
Reauthorization of Undercover Operation
Record-Keeper (see CUFFS Administrator)
Recoverable Funds
Distribution of
Proceeds for Laundering
Requesting
Return to Headquarters
Use of
Regulating (Limit) the Amount of Proceeds Held
Reimbursements
Other Agencies
Other Operations (within OI)
Overtime Expenses
Return of CUC-Appropriated Funds
Roles and Responsibilities
Assistant Director(s), Operations
Assistant Secretary
Case Agent
Contact Agent
Cover Agent
CUC Administrative Overseer (ASAC)
CUC Program Manager
CUFFS Administrator
Deputy Assistant Director, Investigative Services
Division
Director of OI
Group Supervisor
Investigative
CUC Lead/Administrative
Special Agent in Charge (SAC)
Undercover Liaison Coordinator (ULC)

Sec 5.9, 7.7
Sec 4.13
Sec 6.20
Sec 6.21, 14.3.2
Sec 7.8
Sec 6.10.3
Sec 5.5.2
Sec 6.2.5, 6.19.1,
14.3.2(1)
Sec 6.2.5, 6.19.1
Sec 6.19, 6.19.2
Sec 6.11
Sec 6.2.1, Glossary
Sec 5.5.2(2)
Sec 4.18, 6.12
Sec 6.24.3
Sec 6.24.3
Sec 6.24.3
Sec 6.24.3
Sec 6.24.3
Sec 6.24.3
Sec 6.5
Sec 6.4.1(2)
Sec 6.4.1(1)
Sec 6.4.4
Sec 14.3.1(2)
Chap 4
Sec 4.5
Sec 4.1
Sec 4.14
Sec 4.17
Sec 4.16
Sec 4.10
Sec 4.13
Sec 4.18
Sec 4.4
Sec 4.2
Sec 4.11, 4.12
Sec 4.12
Sec 4.11
Sec 4.9
Sec 4.7, Chap 10

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Undercover Operative
Undercover Review Committee (DHS and ICE URC)
Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit
Unit Chiefs, ISD, Inv. Programs, and Operations
Safeguarding Funds
High Risk Investments
Sweep Accounts
Search Authority (Undercover Operative)
Documents (Removal/Copying)
Oral Communications
Suspect’s Premises
Seizure of Proceeds
Self-Defense (Undercover Operative)
Sensitive Circumstances
DHS Sensitive Circumstances
ICE Sensitive Circumstances
Separation of Duties
Case Agent
CUC Lead/Administrative Group Supervisor
CUC Program Manager
CUFFS Administrator
Undercover Operative
Waiver
Sharing (Splitting) Proceeds
Agreements
Other Participating Agencies
Prohibition
With Another OI CUC Operation
Six-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan
Revision of
Sources of Information (Transactions Involving)
Special Agent in Charge (Roles and Responsibilities)
Splitting Proceeds
Agreements
Other Participating Agencies
Prohibition
With Another OI CUC Operation
State-Issued Undercover Identification
Statutory Authority
8 U.S.C. § 1363a (INS Title)
19 U.S.C. § 2081 (USCS Title)
Certification and Exemptions
Stipends (Paid to CI)
PAA requirements

Sec 4.15
Sec 4.3
Sec 4.6
Sec 4.8
Sec 6.16
Sec 6.16.2(1)
Sec 6.16.1, Glossary
Sec 3.5, 4.15
Sec 3.5.3
Sec 3.5.2
Sec 3.5.1
Sec 6.5.3, 14.3.1(1.1)
Sec 3.2.4
Sec 2.4, 5.3.3(2),
Glossary
Sec 2.4.1
Sec 2.4.2
Sec 4.19
Sec 4.19
Sec 4.19
Sec 4.19, 6.12.1
Sec 4.19
Sec 4.19.1
Sec 6.4.1
Sec 6.4.1(3), 6.4.1(4)
Sec 6.4.1(4)
Sec 6.4.1
Sec 6.4.1(3)
Sec 6.2.2
Sec 6.2.3
Sec 6.8
Sec 4.9
Sec 6.4.1
Sec 6.4.1(3), 6.4.1(4)
Sec 6.4.1(4)
Sec 6.4.1
Sec 6.4.1(3)
Sec 9.1.3
Sec 2.2, App A
Sec 2.2
Sec 2.2
Sec 2.2.1
Sec 6.8.1, Glossary
Sec 3.8

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Substitute Receipts
TECS Program Code (CUC)
Third-Party Assistance
Third-Party Gifts
Training
CUFFS Administrator School (CUFFSAS)
Undercover Liaison Coordinator School (ULCS)
Undercover Managers School (UCMS)
Undercover Operatives School (UCOS)
Using Operational Funds for
Waiver for UCOS
Transferring Property
To Another CUC Operation
To ICE
Travel in Support of Undercover Operations
Actual Expenses
Confidential Informants
Premium (Including First and Business) Class
Undercover Activity
Foreign Countries (Activities in)
Internet-Based
Undercover Activity (Types)
Deep
Internet-Based
Limited
Moderate
Undercover Operative
Undercover Bank Accounts
Business/Corporate Bank Accounts
Foreign Bank Accounts
Individual Undercover Bank Accounts
Undercover Business
Undercover Credit Cards (Personal/Individual)
Undercover Credit Cards (Business)
Undercover Identification
Confidential Informant (Issued to)
Control of
Federally-Issued
Foreign Government-Issued
Inventory (Annual)
Private Business-Issued
State-Issued
Undercover Liaison Coordinator (ULC)

Sec 6.18.3
Sec 5.9, 7.7
Sec 3.7
Sec 3.7.1
Chap 8
Sec 8.4
Sec 8.3
Sec 8.2
Sec 8.1
Sec 6.20
Sec 8.1.4
Sec 14.3.2(1.2)
Sec 14.3.2(2)
Sec 6.22
Sec 6.22.1
Sec 6.22.3
Sec 6.22.2
Chap 12
Chap 13
Glossary
Glossary
Glossary
Glossary
Glossary
Sec 4.15
Sec 6.14
Sec 6.14, 9.3
Sec 6.14.5
Sec 6.14, 9.2.1
Sec 9.3.1
Sec 6.13, 9.2.2
Sec 6.13, 9.3
Sec 9.1
Sec 9.1.1(1)
Sec 9.1.6
Sec 9.1.2
Sec 9.1.4
Sec 7.9, 9.1.6
Sec 9.1.5
Sec 9.1.3
Sec 4.7, Chap10,
Glossary

Undercover Operations
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Application and Reauthorization Procedures
Closing
Confidentiality of
Types
Who May Make Application for and Conduct
Undercover Operative
Roles and Responsibilities
Search Authority of
Documents (Removal/Copying)
Oral Communications
Suspect’s Premises
Undercover Review Committee
Members
Role/Responsibilities
DHS URC
ICE URC
Unforeseen Circumstances
Unforeseen Expenditures
Revision of 6-Month Expenditure Authorization Plan
Unforeseen Otherwise Illegal Activity
Unit Chief, Undercover Operations Unit
U.S. Attorney (Additional Documents Required with Proposal)
Use of Proceeds
Vehicles (Leased)
Waivers
Inducement Policy
Limit on Amount of Proceeds Held
Separation of Duties
Training
Cuffs Administrator School
Undercover Managers School
Undercover Operative School

Sec 5.5
Chap 14
Sec 3.10
Sec 5.3
Sec 5.2
Sec 4.15
Sec 3.5
Sec 3.5.3
Sec 3.5.2
Sec 3.5.1
Sec 4.3, 5.5.4
Glossary
Sec 4.3
Sec 4.3.1
Sec 4.3.2
Sec 5.11
Sec 6.2.3
Sec 6.2.3
Sec 3.2.6
Sec 4.6
Sec 5.5.3(2)
Sec 6.4
Sec 6.26
Sec 3.4.2
Sec 6.5.1
Sec 4.19.1
Sec 8.4.1
Sec 8.2.1
Sec 8.1.4

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Appendix I

SUPERSEDED DOCUMENTS
The Undercover Operations Handbook supersedes the following policy documents. This
list is not all-inclusive:
-ICE OI Interim Undercover Operations (September 2003)
-OI Directive (DIR) 05-002, “Online (Internet) Banking Within Certified Undercover
Operations” (December 29, 2004).
-OI DIR 05-003, “Disposition of Excess Proceeds from Certified Undercover
Operations” (January 14, 2005)
-OI DIR 05-004, “Use of Proceeds to Fund Undercover Training” (January 31, 2005)
-OI DIR 06-004, “Undercover/Sensitive Assignments Liaison Coordinator Program”
(January 11, 2006)
-OI Memorandum, “Designation of an Administrative Overseer for Certified Undercover
‘Umbrella Operations’” (February 23, 2004)
-OI Memorandum, “Undercover Review Committee Presentation Requirements”
(December 19, 2005)
-OI Memorandum, “Undercover Field Review Requirements” (February 3, 2006)
-OI Memorandum, “Revision to the Frequency of Field Reviews for Certified
Undercover Operations” (April 3, 2006)
-OI Memorandum, “Revised Undercover Operations Monthly Financial Review
Worksheet (Appendix I)” (April 10, 2006)
-OI Memorandum, “Implementation of the Revised Expense Approval and Monthly
Review Forms for ICE OI Certified Undercover Operations” (July 20, 2006)
-OI Memorandum, “Undercover Operations Administrative Overseers” (January 11,
2007)
-OI Memorandum, “Transgressions and Corrective Action Related to Certified
Undercover Operations” (November 27, 2007)

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Appendix J

ACRONYMS
A
AD – Assistant Director
AIRG – Asset Identification and Removal Group
AOR – Area of Responsibility
ASAC – Assistant Special Agent in Charge
AUSA – Assistant United States Attorney
B
C
C3 – Cyber Crimes Center
CBP – U.S. Customs and Border Protection
CI – Confidential Informant
CUC – Certified Undercover
CUFFS – Certified Undercover Fundamental Financial System
CUFFSAS – Certified Undercover Fundamental Financial System Administrator School
D
DAD – Deputy Assistant Director
DEA – Drug Enforcement Administration
DHS – Department of Homeland Security
DOJ – Department of Justice
E
EAF – Expense Advance/Approval Form
EAP – Employee Assistance Program
EFT – Electronic Funds Transfer
EIN – Employer Identification Number
EIU – Executive Information Unit
F
FAA – Federal Aviation Administration
FAR – Federal Acquisition Regulation
FDIC – Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
FLMU – Financial and Logistics Management Unit
FP&F – Fines, Penalties and Forfeitures
FTR – Federal Travel Regulations
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G
GPS – Global Positioning System
GS – Group Supervisor
GSA – General Services Administration
H
HIDTA – High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area
I
ICE – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
INS – Immigration and Naturalization Service
ISD – Investigative Services Division
ISP – Internet Service Provider
ISU – Investigative Support Unit
J-L
M
MIU – Management Inspection Unit
MOA – Memorandum of Agreement
MOU – Memorandum of Understanding
MSD – Mission Support Division
N
O
OCC – Object Class Code
OI – Office of Investigations
OIA – Office of International Affairs
OPR – Office of Professional Responsibility
P
PAA – Personal Assistance Agreement
POE – Purchase of Evidence
POI – Purchase of Information
R
RAC – Resident Agent in Charge
ROI – Report of Investigation
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S
SAC – Special Agent in Charge
SF – Standard Form
SSN – Social Security Number
T
TECS – Treasury Enforcement Communications System
TFO – Task Force Officer
U
UCOS – Undercover Operatives School
ULC – Undercover Liaison Coordinator
ULCS – Undercover Liaison Coordinator School
URC – Undercover Review Committee
US – United States
USC – United States Code
USCS – U.S. Customs Service
UCMS – Undercover Managers School
V-Z

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