6. "America's Secret Police Network"
J. Edgar Hoover knew that power lies between the manila covers of a
personal dossier, and he used that knowledge to build and maintain his
empire for almost half a century.
The FBI, the CIA, and virtually every other agency given the authority
to spy to defend us from foreign or domestic enemies, have sooner or
later gone off the reservation and used their power to threaten our
In contrast to the CIA and FBI, the Law Enforcement Intelligence Unit
(LEIU) is a little known organization; in fact, almost no one has ever
heard of it. But its power is considerable and its potential threat
to our freedom is enormous.
The LEIU links the intelligence squads of almost every major police
force in the United States and Canada. Although its members are sworn
police officers who work for state and city governments, it is a private
club, not answerable to voters, taxpayers, or elected officials. It
cuts across the vertical lines of authority of local government, for
its members hold certain allegiances to the LEIU that cannot be countermanded
by a mayor, county manager, or even a state governor.
It's not easy to join the LEIU. When applying for membership, a police
force must be sponsored by another agency already in the LEIU and must
be endorsed by three others. All members are notified of the application,
and the LEIU carries out a thorough investigation o£ the applicant
agency and the officers who ask for it and will take part in LEIU activities.
Custody of the LEIU's files is the most sacred trust that the organization
bestows upon its individual members. The LEIU not only withholds its
files from the FBI and other federal authorities but also flatly refuses
to show them to anyone who is not an LEIU member.
The LEIU is a private club and therefore not subject to freedom-of-information
laws. Thus, the LEIU's files are even more secret than those of the
CIA or FBI.
Ex-members of the LEIU admit to illegal wiretapping, breaking and entering,
and spying on people to gather information for their files.
The failure of the mass media to publicize this powerful American secret
police network qualifies this story for nomination as one of the "best
censored" stories of 1978.
San Francisco Chronicle, November 25, 1978, p.2, "Leaks to the
Mob: U. S. Police Network's Big Problem."
Penthouse, 1976, p, 77, "America's Secret Police Network,"
by George O'Toole.