DEA Agent Manual Notes
In preparation for a trial in which the AUSA is being a very bad girl and not complying with her obligations to seek out and provide, under Brady, Giglio, and Kyles, exculpatory and impeachment material, I downloaded a copy of the DEA Agents’ Manual here to review the section on informants for some cross-examination fun.
Here’s what, according to section 6612.22 (sort-of-OCRed PDF of that section), the DEA informant’s file should include:
A DEA-5 File Jacket containing:
DEA Form 356, Informant Payment Record, kept on top of the file;
DEA Form 202, Informant Establishment Report, plus any other documents connected with the informant’s establishment;
DEA Form 473, Cooperating Individual Agreement;
DEA Form 103, Voucher for Payment for Information and Purchase of Evidence;
Copies of all debriefing reports;
Copies of case initiation reports bearing on the utilization of the informant (see section 6214.4 of the Manual);
Copies of statements signed by the informant;
Any administrative correspondence pertaining to the informant, including documentation of any representations made on his behalf or any other nonmonetary considerations furnished; and
Any deactivation report or declaration of an unsatisfactory informant.
Here’s what the manual says, in section 6211.1, about report writing:
Written reports are vital to the conduct of DEA operations. They are our formal means of communicating among ourselves, with other agencies, and with the court. In composing an investigative report, the agent should remember that it will be read by someone else, and most likely form the basis for action or inaction by the reader. The report may also be read by someone seeking to discredit its contents or the Agent himself. [Hey, that’s me!] Investigative reports should describe whatever is to be reported–fully, exactly, and plainly–without opinion or exposition.
And here’s what it says, in section 6211.6, about preservation of rough notes:
Rough notes taken by an Agent while interviewing a potential Government witness, an informant, a suspect, or a subject of an investigation are subject to discovery. Failure to produce these notes, even due to good faith loss or destruction, could result in dismissal of the case. Agents will therefore preserve any such notes, even though their contents have been subsequently reported on a DEA Form 6. . . . . Each page of notes will be signed and dated by the Agent, and the pages stapled together. Notes made by different Agents will be separated by stapling. The notes will be preserved in an envelope attached to the case file.
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