U.S. Efforts to Find Miguel Recarey

OSI-95-7: Published: Dec 21, 1994. Publicly Released: Dec 21, 1994.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the U.S. government's handling of a fugitive case, focusing on: (1) Departments of Justice (DOJ) and State efforts to locate and gain custody of the fugitive; (2) whether DOJ contacted the government of Venezuela about the fugitive; (3) whether the Venezuelan government informed the U.S. government of its efforts to find the fugitive; and (4) whether the U.S. government followed standard operating procedures in the case.

GAO found that: (1) it could not determine whether DOJ and State followed standard operating procedures in the fugitive case, since they refused to provide all available files because of their ongoing investigation; (2) DOJ and State appeared to make good-faith efforts to locate and gain custody of the fugitive, but the Federal Bureau of Investigation failed to request a certain type of notification through an international criminal investigation organization when it determined that the fugitive had left the United States; (3) DOJ and State notified the Venezuelan government about the fugitive and the Venezuelan government said it would cooperate with U.S. efforts to find the fugitive; and (4) U.S. law enforcement agencies had difficulty in finding and apprehending the fugitive because he apparently used his influence with some Venezuelan government officials to avoid detention and to mislead U.S. law enforcement officials in their pursuit.

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