The FBI has started a corruption hotline in Central Missouri to expose public officials involved in corruption. The hotline was set up to solicit the public’s help in identifying officials who are misusing the powers of public office and to bring them to justice.
In an address made to the media, Special Agent Shelly Doherty encouraged the public to use the hotline number to report any corruption related issues they might have faced or heard about. The toll free number can be accessed by most parts of Central Missouri, which includes Jefferson City, Columbia, Sedalia and the Lake area. FBI has also provided an e-mail id for those who wish to communicate their grievances through e-mail.
Tackling public corruption remains a top priority for the FBI. The growing number of corruption cases in the public sphere has led the FBI to set up hotlines in other places as well. The Missouri hotline is modelled after the program in Kansas City, which was considered to be quite successful.
Last month, the Boston division of the FBI had set up another hotline initiative to target corruption and fraud at every level of governance. The campaign was kick-started with a billboard, which read “Stop Corruption Now.” Efforts are being made to inform the public through social networking platforms as well.
Fighting a problem like corruption can be hard, since it usually happens behind closed doors through investigations that are often very secretive in nature. Without the assistance of the public, it becomes all the more difficult to detect and identify officials who are in on the take. Public corruption is a federal offense and is usually characterized by money laundering, bribes, kickbacks, embezzlement; as well as bank, wire or tax frauds.
Citizens can speak to an agent by dialling 1-855-KCPCTIP or shoot an email to KCPCTIP@ic.fbi.gov