The principle mission of the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) is to investigate potential criminal violations of the Internal Revenue Code and other possible financial crimes. As one arm of the IRS the CID’s conviction rate is one of the highest in federal law enforcement. To fulfill its mandate CID assists in the prosecution of significant instances of criminal behavior that will generate maximum deterrence, enhance voluntary compliance, and promote public confidence in the tax system.
As financial investigators, CI special agents fill a unique niche in the federal law enforcement community. Today’s sophisticated schemes to defraud the government demand the analytical ability of financial investigators to wade through complex paper and computerized financial records. Due to the increased use of automation for financial records, CI special agents are trained to recover computer evidence. Along with their financial investigative skills, special agents use specialized forensic technology to recover financial data that may have been encrypted, password protected, or hidden by other electronic means.
The Criminal Investigation strategic plan is comprised of three interdependent programs: Legal Source Tax Crimes; Illegal Source Financial and Tax Crimes; and Narcotics Related and Counterterrorism Financial Crimes. These three programs are mutually supportive and encourage utilization of all statutes within CI’s jurisdiction, the grand jury process and enforcement techniques to combat tax, money laundering and currency crime violations.
Criminal tax attorneys housed in this department are responsible for providing legal advice and assistance to CID investigations as to all areas of the Criminal Tax function, including tax, currency, and money laundering crimes and criminal procedure. They also provide legal counsel on investigative matters such as administrative and grand jury investigations, undercover operations, electronic surveillance, search warrants and forfeitures, the referral of cases to the Department of Justice for grand jury investigation, criminal prosecution, and the commencement of forfeitures. Criminal Tax attorneys also coordinate with other offices within the IRS and the Office of Chief Counsel on all matters involving criminal tax.
The Tax Division handles or authorizes most civil and criminal litigation that concerns or relates to the internal revenue laws in federal district and appellate courts. Tax Division attorneys seek to secure correct, uniform and fair interpretations of the internal revenue laws and to ensure that uniform standards are applied in criminal tax prosecutions. To the greatest extent possible, the Tax Division coordinates the use of both civil and criminal enforcement tools, to maximize the deterrent effect of its litigation and to enhance collection efforts. Tax Division prosecutors also pursue international tax crimes, including the illegal use of offshore trusts and foreign bank accounts to evade taxes.