Squads & Units
Why is the identification of hate crimes so important? Our home, Bergen County, New Jersey is located in the northeast corner of the State, just outside of the cultural hub of New York City. Inherently, we proudly represent a very diverse group of people—close to one million residents. With so many cultures, backgrounds, beliefs and ways of life within such a small area, it is critical that the laws ensure everyone has the right to live without prejudice and fear of hate. It is our job at the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office (BCPO) to enforce those laws when they are violated, and to maintain a relationship with the people that we serve.
The Civil Unit of the Bergen County Prosecutor`s Office is responsible for prosecuting all civil forfeitures within Bergen County. In order to act as a deterrent against future crimes and to deprive criminals of the illicit gains of their crimes, New Jersey law pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:64-1 et. seq., permits the forfeiture of property that has been used, or is intended to be used, in furtherance of an unlawful activity arising from an indictable offense. The procedures to forfeit property as well as the use of property after forfeiture are subject to strict guidelines promulgated by the Office of the Attorney General. The Civil Unit prosecutes civil forfeiture actions where the State has seized currency, automobiles, real estate and other property received as proceeds or utilized in connection with or in furtherance of the underlying criminal activity. Some common examples of property that is subject to forfeiture include: illegal weapons, currency that is used to purchase drugs or promote loan sharking, automobiles used to transport illegal weapons or narcotics, laptops containing child pornography and homes where drugs are illegally distributed.
The mission of the Community Engagement Division is to promote dialogue between law enforcement and the community, to raise awareness of public safety concerns, resources, and campaigns, and to build sustainable partnerships between Bergen County residents, businesses, schools, and law enforcement agencies.
The Confidential Investigations Unit (“CIU”) is responsible for the investigation of complaints involving Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office personnel, the county’s law enforcement executives, internal affairs unit commanders, public officials, and other matters involving confidentiality and integrity. CIU additionally investigates the backgrounds of prospective employees to ensure that only the highest quality of individuals are hired, implements the drug testing policy, trains police recruits on internal affairs issues, and trains the county’s internal affairs investigators on the New Jersey Attorney General’s Internal Affairs Policy and Procedures.
The Cyber Crimes Unit (CCU) is comprised of specially trained sworn law enforcement personnel, civilian agents, and prosecutor staff who handle the increasingly complicated matrix of technological devices and services and determine their impact on criminal investigations. The CCU has three equally important functions.
The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Domestic Violence Unit is responsible for prosecuting all indictable domestic violence crimes committed in Bergen County. The unit is also responsible for prosecuting all non-indictable contempt cases heard by the Superior Court – Family Division. In addition, the unit handles all allegations of willful non-support as referred by the Bergen County Probation Department Child Support Enforcement Unit, as well as matters alleging interference with custody. The unit also oversees the investigation of all police officer-involved acts of domestic violence, and is ultimately responsible for advising the Prosecutor concerning the rearming process for these individuals. Additionally, the unit handles all non-financial Elder Abuse cases.
The Financial Crimes Unit is responsible for the investigation of major theft and fraud offenses committed in Bergen County. Generally, the Financial Crimes Unit limits its participation in theft and fraud investigations to cases involving a loss of $75,000 or more. Due to the complex and multi-jurisdictional nature of theft and fraud investigations, the squad often assists local municipalities in cases requiring special expertise.
The mission of the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Intelligence & Counterterrorism Unit is to collect, analyze, preserve, and disseminate intelligence information regarding criminal and terrorist activity in Bergen County. The unit also serves in the essential role as the County Counterterrorism Coordinator (CTC) of all law enforcement homeland security initiatives and is a partner with the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (NJ OHSP).
The Special Investigations Squad, conducts investigations involving illegal gambling, criminal usury (loansharking), extortion, prostitution (massage parlors, escort services), murder for hire, traditional organized crime, armed robbery, carjacking, burglary, home invasion, kidnapping, theft by extortion and illegal possession and sale of firearms.
The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit responds to sexual assaults of adults, any sexual offense of a child, and significant physical abuse of a child. The unit consists of assistant prosecutors, investigators, an agent, a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner and a Victim Witness Advocate.
The core function of the Animal Cruelty Task Force is the proactive investigation and prosecution of alleged cases of animal neglect and cruelty within Bergen County. The task force works in cooperation with local law enforcement in the investigation of all complaints. Community education is one component of the task force’s work.
The Bureau provides information systems and support to every law enforcement agency in Bergen County, which includes municipal, county, state and federal agencies. The services are provided through distributed computing systems over a countywide TCP/IP network. By utilizing these systems and the network, law enforcement personnel within the county can share information with each other as well as with state agencies like the New Jersey State Police and federal agencies like the Drug Enforcement Agency.
The Cold Case Task Force is responsible for the investigation of all cold case homicides within Bergen County. A murder investigation is deemed a cold case once all leads have been exhausted and the case remains opens and unsolved after a period of three years. The task force currently has 99 cold cases that it will ultimately investigate.
The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotic Task Force has evolved to its present form over a period of about thirty years. The mission of the Narcotic Task Force is to investigate the illegal use and distribution of illicit drugs within Bergen County and to service the municipal police agencies within the county. It does so utilizing a multi-jurisdictional approach. Municipal police departments within Bergen County are encouraged to assign personnel to the Narcotic Task Force for varying periods of duration and the Narcotic Task Force routinely assigns personnel to other investigative agencies as well, believing that it is only through cooperation that law enforcement’s anti-drug efforts will be successful. Narcotic Task Force personnel serve full time with the United States Immigration and Customs Service (ICE) and the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).