LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – The FBI launched a new awareness campaign to protect free speech Thursday. The agency used the Formula One Las Vegas Grand Prix as a springboard.
The FBI debuted a Transnational Repression Awareness campaign. That is defined as foreign governments attempting to silence political opponents in the United States through stalking, hacking, and even killing. Southern Nevada is home to a lot of international travel.
Special agent Spencer Evans explained that the FBI’s outreach is toward Nevadans and the millions that travel here annually. The bureau will spread awareness through billboards and online.
“They may not recognize they have free speech freedoms and that they are protected, because in their home country that may not be the case,” Evans said. “So, it is not Nevada for the sake of Nevada, is that we have so many people that come here and we’re at the crossroads of so many activities.”
The FBI timed it with the upcoming race.
Potential victims include activists, journalists, and minorities. People that a regime may view as a threat and want to silence.
Those countries include China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran
“We will not stop working to defend the right to which every person in the United States is entitled to,” U.S. Attorney for Nevada, Jason Frierson said.
Agent Evans said it is a growing problem that has reached our backyards.
“We have existing investigations that have impacted Nevada and we want to get a message to victims,” Evans said.
His examples range from a murder-for-hire plot, kidnapping, intimidating family abroad, fake warrants, and online harassment.
The billboards will run through the Super Bowl, possibly longer.
To report or get information click HERE, or call 1-800- CALL-FBI.