Athens, Greece - More than 60 law enforcement officials from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations' (HSI) Attaché Office in Athens and the Hellenic Customs Authority (HCA) gathered for a new training program focused on enhancing HCA's border interdictions and anti-smuggling investigations.

The program ran from Sept. 2-25 and comprised course and field-based training facilitated by HSI special agents and two U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers. Training was conducted in Thessaloniki, Alexandroupolis and Athens.

Training included instruction on methodologies and techniques used in border operations, interdiction efforts and related investigations. The overall focus was to share best practices in producing actionable information to target transnational criminal organizations (TCOs). Developing successful criminal investigations against TCOs identifies, disrupts and dismantles organizations that play key roles in narcotics trafficking, money laundering, and special interest alien (SIA) smuggling, all potentially supporting terrorism.

"There are clear benefits to trainings like this one." said Douglas Freeman, HSI Athens Attaché. "We share concepts and experiences that result in stronger relationships among the involved agencies, creating a multiplied force of law enforcement officials working in concert to stop transnational criminal organizations in their source countries globally."

Through its International Operations, ICE's Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) has 62 operational attaché offices in 46 countries around the world. HSI special agents work closely with foreign law enforcement agencies on a myriad of transnational criminal investigations.