U.S. Department of Justice Provides Mutual Legal Assistance Training to Counter Terrorism Investigators in Mumbai

Mumbai – In partnership with the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Mumbai Police, the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation will provide India’s top counterterrorism investigators and prosecutors with assistance on how to request evidence from the United States through the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) between the U.S. and India. The MLAT workshop will take place in Mumbai, India, over a two-day span, and will focus on case-specific requests in order to expedite India’s demand for evidence located in the U.S. for use in Indian-based investigations.

Organized through the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi’s FBI Office of Legal Attaché, and through the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs, the two-day event will give Indian prosecutors and investigators an opportunity to work with their DOJ and FBI counterparts and learn best practices for requesting evidence from the United States. The event will also showcase some of the FBI’s current investigative techniques used domestically for securing digital evidence in ongoing investigations.

“With the growing use of the internet by terrorists for operational planning and recruitment, Indian law enforcement has been at the forefront in anticipating and neutralizing these threats,” according to FBI Legal Attaché Ashish L. Sawkar. “This workshop will serve to provide our Indian counterparts with direct access to the attorneys at the Department of Justice, who will execute their requests for digital evidence in support of extremely important efforts in India to counter these online threats. It will also provide recent best practices utilized by our prosecutors and investigators in the U.S. on how to obtain evidence from U.S.-based internet service providers and social media companies.”

The MLAT workshop is part of a greater effort by U.S. and Indian law enforcement officials to increase cooperation and information sharing. Most recently, the Department of Justice and the FBI Office of Legal Attaché have provided substantial assistance to the Government of India in the ongoing investigation into the attack at Pathankot Airbase in early January 2016.