Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development Assistance and Training
The U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training (OPDAT) has been actively involved since 1995 in programs designed to support reform of the criminal justice system in Russia and to increase the level and quality of U.S.-Russian law enforcement cooperation. The DOJ program is funded through the Freedom Support Act and its work is closely coordinated with the Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, DOJ/OPDAT’s activities are integrated into the Law Enforcement Section of the Embassy. DOJ is represented at post by two Resident Legal Advisors.
DOJ is committed to training prosecutors and other law enforcement personnel on both sides of the Atlantic to work more effectively on matters on common interest. Past training programs have focused on criminal procedure reforms, organized crime, public corruption, money laundering, complex financial crimes, narcotics and human trafficking. Future programs are likely to be expanded to include even greater emphasis on providing Russia’s criminal justice practitioners with skills necessary to help them adapt to the sweeping changes currently underway.
DOJ also assists in the process of facilitating more effective international law enforcement cooperation, both through education about the use of the existing Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty in effect between the U.S. and Russia, and through direct program exchanges. As necessary, DOJ frequently serves as a liaison to the Russian Procuracy, Russia’s chief law enforcement organ. With transnational crime increasing at exponential rates, the challenge of providing such assistance becomes an ever greater component of DOJ’s international obligations.
Please visit the OPDAT homepage.