From a Feb. 5 speech by FBI Director William S. Sessions at George Washington University Law Center:

{W}hite collar crimes are difficult to detect... . How do we prove that a judge accepted a bribe from a lawyer for deciding a case in a certain way? Generally, there is no crime scene to search. ...

{B}ank fraud and embezzlement investigations are extremely complex and extremely time-consuming. Many times the fraud is being committed by an owner, by members of the board or by other high-ranking bank officials, and cooperation from their employees is thus very difficult to obtain. This, in turn, necessitates more labor-intensive avenues of investigation. Thousands of documents must be examined ... hundreds of witnesses must be interviewed and ... a grand jury investigation is almost always necessary in order to obtain essential documents and witness testimony. So we have implemented new strategies for maximizing limited FBI resources. ...

One of these strategies involves the use of task forces. The first task force of this kind was formed in 1987 in Dallas. ... The Dallas Bank Fraud Task Force, composed of representatives from several federal agencies including the FBI and the IRS as well as the Department of Justice and the United States attorneys, concentrated its resources on possible criminal activity by the top officers of the failed financial institutions rather than on the middle- or lower-echelon employees. This task force ... was so successful that it has now become the model for all our financial institution fraud cases. As a result of the Dallas task force alone, more than 90 people have been criminally charged thus far. Overall, during the fiscal year 1990, FBI financial institution fraud investigations resulted in more than 2,300 convictions.