Uncovering Members of an International Drug Smuggling Network
One platform to search versus many disparate databases
Revealed other associates related to the suspect using one probe image
Solved a year-long
case that had no leads
A NICKNAME IS NOT ENOUGH TO IDENTIFY A SUSPECT
A federal law enforcement agency’s intelligence project had hit a dead end.
A coordinated criminal organization based in Mexico used Facebook to recruit drivers to cross the United States/Mexico border to deliver money. The network secretly placed illegal drugs into the drivers’ vehicles and warned them that they were being tracked with the supposed money they were carrying. Unaware that they were now smuggling drugs, some of the unwitting mules were later caught smuggling the narcotics into the U.S. from Mexico.
Law enforcement tried to identify the recruiter just based upon the nickname the unwitting mules provided, but despite searching over 50 relevant intelligence databases for over a year, law enforcement could not identify the recruiter.
Despite over a year of investigation, law enforcement could not identify a suspect.
QUICKLY IDENTIFYING A SUSPECT
An AI-driven facial recognition solution can drastically accelerate the identification process. Facial recognition compares an uploaded probe image against a database of images. Law enforcement agencies use facial recognition results as investigative leads, and when supported by other evidence, they can accurately and rapidly identify suspects, persons of interest, and victims of crimes.
The technology Clearview AI provides is a post-event research tool, using over 30 billion photos derived from publicly available web sources, including social media posts, personal and professional websites, news articles, online mugshots and other criminal databases, public record sites and thousands of other open source records.
“Clearview AI is another superpower for us.”
CLEARVIEW AI HELPS IDENTIFY THE RECRUITER IN LESS THAN A MINUTE
One day law enforcement stopped a drug smuggler crossing into El Paso, and the recruit showed the officer the Facebook page that recruited them. This page had the recruiter’s nickname along with their profile photo. A criminal analyst ran the Facebook page picture through Clearview AI, and received results instantly. One result led the investigator to a photo of the suspect with their real name at a local country club, situated less than 2 miles from the Mexico/U.S. Border.
Now that the criminal analyst had identified his target, he used other investigative methods to determine their sub-recruiters, prior perpetrators, and prior drug seizures tied to the recruiter.
With enough time, other investigative methods might have eventually linked the recruiter’s nickname with their real name. In this case, however, Clearview AI with a single search provided the pivotal lead to develop the investigation, saving countless hours of investigative work, solving a year-long case, and discovering the members of an international drug smuggling network.
“Target identification is critical. Once we identified the main recruiter, we could identify sub-recruiters, prior perpetrators, and prior drug seizures."