FBI investigations in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands are organized and overseen by the FBI’s San Juan Division. The FBI San Juan, Puerto Rico, Division covers all 78 municipalities in both Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands (The St. Thomas resident Agency oversees the British Virgin Islands.).
The FBI San Juan Division has its field office on Carlos Chardon Avenue in San Juan, although there are five satellite offices (often called Resident Agencies) that are strategically located throughout the region:
- Fajardo, Puerto Rico
- St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands
- Ponce, Puerto Rico
- Aguadilla, Puerto Rico
- St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands
The San Juan Division of the FBI, like other FBI Divisions, focuses on the main priority of counterterrorism. This Division launched two Joint Terrorism Task Forces in 2002, thereby allowing federal and commonwealth law enforcement agencies to come together to deal with any threats affecting Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
However, police corruption continues to be a major concern for the San Juan Division, as is evident from recent headlines:
- November 2012 – Former Police Officer in Puerto Rico Sentenced to 181 Months in Prison for Providing Armed Security for Drug Transaction
- November 2012 – Virgin Islands Senator Found Guilty of Operating a Criminal Enterprise that Included Wire Fraud, Bribery, and Mail Fraud
- October 2012 – Two Puerto Rico Police Officers Indicted on Federal Civil Rights and Perjury Charges
Career Paths for Special Agents Stationed in San Juan, Puerto Rico
FBI professionals in the San Juan Division include a wide range of Specialists:
- FBI Special Agents
- Electronics Technicians
- Support Services Technicians
- Language Specialists
- Investigative Specialists
- Intelligence Analysts
- Security Experts
- Financial Analysts
The FBI Specialists in the San Juan Division possess a wide array of specialized capabilities, including:
- Evidence Recovery and Processing – Three, eight-member Evidence Response Teams in the FBI San Juan Division include FBI Agent s and Other Special Agents who are tasked with securing crime scenes and gathering and processing the physical evidence found there.
- Tactical Support and Crisis Response – The FBI San Juan Division has a 15-member SWAT team.
- Translation – The FBI San Juan Division has a group of Language Specialists for cases of terrorism, espionage, and criminal cases.
- Hazardous Materials – The San Juan Division has a HAZMAT Expert who responds to situations involving hazardous materials.
- Bomb Recovery and Analysis – The Special Agent Bomb Technicians in the San Juan Division work alongside the Joint Terrorism Task Forces and the national Terrorist Explosive Device Analytical Center.
- Computer Forensics – The FBI San Juan Division has a Computer Analysis and Response Team that retrieves evidence from digital devices.
How to Become an FBI Agent in San Juan: FBI Requirements in San Juan
Individuals who want to learn how to become an FBI Agent in Puerto Rico and the U.S Virgins Islands must meet a number of initial FBI requirements for employment:
- U.S. citizen
- Four-year degree from an accredited college or university
- A minimum two years of professional work experience
- A valid U.S. driver’s license
- Between the ages of 23 and 36 (Veterans may qualify if they are older than 36)
Individuals with questions regarding FBI requirements in the San Juan Division may seek additional information by visiting the FBI website or by contacting the San Juan Division field office or one of the Resident Agency offices within the San Juan Division.
The FBI also requires that all candidates for employment undergo an FBI background check, a physical fitness evaluation, and a thorough medical exam, which includes a vision test, hearing test, and a drug urinalysis. Further, individuals who want to learn how to become an FBI Agent in Puerto Rico or the U.S. Virgin Islands should learn more about the FBI’s Special Agent Entry programs.