Harbor Police enters MOU with Dept of State for International Law Enforcement
As part of efforts to support foreign port security and fight international crime, the Port of San Diego’s Harbor Police Department will assist the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs under a Memorandum of Understanding signed April 10, 2015.
The MOU was signed by Ambassador William R. Brownfield, Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL); and Harbor Police Chief Mark Stainbrook. It establishes a framework for Harbor Police to train, advise and mentor international law enforcement and security personnel and assist with foreign governments’ anti-crime efforts, mainly in Asia and Latin America.
This new relationship with the Port of San Diego is the INL’s second port partnership and the first on the West Coast. It builds on its existing work with PortMiami to provide security assistance to Latin America and the Caribbean.
INL frequently receives requests for guidance and support regarding port security matters from foreign governments. Under this partnership, the vast expertise and experience of the Port’s Harbor Police Department will be put to work helping partner nations improve border security in the face of increased criminal threats.
By providing training and mentorship, the Port will assist in efforts to combat transnational crime and build partner nations’ capacity to establish effective port and maritime security.
“We are excited to partner with the Port of San Diego,” said Assistant Secretary Brownfield. “The unique expertise of the Harbor Police will be put to work advancing America’s security on the world stage, by helping partner nations establish effective port and maritime security and combat transnational crime. Better port security for countries overseas translates directly into faster transits to and security for the Port of San Diego.“
The Harbor Police Department is the law enforcement agency that patrols San Diego Bay, surrounding waterfront areas, and San Diego International Airport. Its 126 sworn officers, supported by 30 civilian professional staff, are highly trained. Officers have expertise in a variety of subjects including maritime firefighting, counter smuggling, human trafficking, K-9 detection of explosives/narcotics, aviation security, vessel operations, maritime tactical training and dive operations.
“The Harbor Police Department plays an important role in international security through our policing of an international marine port and an international airport,” said Acting Harbor Police Chief Mark Stainbrook. “The Harbor Police are honored to be invited to share best practices with our counterparts overseas. It makes sense for us to form relationships with law enforcement in other countries, and that’s the idea behind this agreement. By teaching and mentoring other port security professionals, we continue to enhance our own understanding.“
Source and Image Credit: Port of San Diego