The IRS and Organized Crime: 100 Years of Following the Money

The IRS and Organized Crime: 100 Years of Following the Money

Date: September 23, 2019
Time: 7 to 9 p.m. in the Historic Courtroom

One hundred years ago, Treasury Department official Elmer Irey created a special unit to crack down on tax evaders. Irey’s “T-Men” became a leading force against corrupt politicians and crime bosses. Its signature case put Chicago Mob boss Al Capone behind bars in 1931. The Intelligence Unit evolved into the IRS Criminal Investigation Division, which today follows the money to build cases against tax cheats and money launderers. With 3,100 employees worldwide, IRS CI fills a unique niche in federal law enforcement, exposing sophisticated schemes to defraud the government. This panel discussion will feature current IRS CI agents describing recent cases and how they uncover financial crimes across the globe.


Tigran Gambaryan
Special Agent with Europol as liaison officer to the European Cybercrime Centre

Mr. Gambaryan began his career with IRS-CI as a Special Agent in 2011 in the Oakland Field Office.  As a Special Agent, he conducted numerous investigations involving violations of the Internal Revenue Code and related financial crimes.

Mr. Gambaryan was assigned to the investigation involving the corrupt members of the Baltimore Silk Road Task Force, as well as the investigation of Ripple Labs (XRP).  Tigran is also the IRS-CI investigator who together with HSI arrested the operator of the world’s largest illegal bittorent download website, Kick Ass Torrents.  More recently, Tigran lead the investigation and shutdown of BTC-e bitcoin exchange and the arrest of its operator Alexander Vinnik. Tigran also investigated Alphabay and Wall Street Marketplaces.

In 2015, Special Agent Gambaryan became the IRS-CI representative at the National Cyber Investigative Joint Task Force (NCIJTF), investigating matters related to national security and terrorism financing.  Special Agent Gambaryan was one of the founding members of the NCIJTF Digital Currency Group.

In 2016, Special Agent Gambaryan joined the IRS-CI Washington DC Cyber Crimes Group (CCU).  At the CCU, Special Agent Gambaryan investigated identity theft, digital currency laundering, distribution of child pornography, tax evasion, terrorism financing, nation state hacking, and bank secrecy act violations.

Special Agent Gambaryan is currently assigned to Europol as a liaison officer to the European Cybercrime Centre (EC3)


James Daniels
Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation

Special Agent Daniels has been as Special Agent with IRS-CI since 1995. During this time he has conducted complex financial investigations involving: tax evasion, tax fraud, bank secrecy, structuring, money laundering, health care fraud, bank fraud, bankruptcy fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, narcotics, identity theft, and cybercrimes. SA Daniels is currently assigned to the Head Quarters Section of Cyber Crimes. SA Daniels is responsible for the Program Areas of Virtual Currency and Dark Web.

Gary L. Alford
Special Agent with Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI).

SA Alford is the Cybercrime Coordinator for the New York Field Office of IRS-CI. Previously, Special Agent Alford also spent three years embedded into a DEA-NY Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Strike Force (NYOCDESF) squad. For the past approximately two years, the author has been detailed into a computer intrusion squad in the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Before becoming a Special Agent, the author was previously employed as a duly commissioned Internal Revenue Agent in the Small/Business and Self-Employed Examination Division of the IRS. He received his BBA in accounting from Baruch College of the City University of New York.

Special Agent Alford built pioneering cases of money laundering and unlicensed money transmitting, involving virtual currency, in the United States such as his lead role in the case that shuttered the illicit darknet marketplace Silk Road. Special Agent Alford single-handedly identified the true identity of the then anonymous owner/operator of Silk Road, who went under the alias of Dread Pirate Roberts, as Ross William Ulbricht. Special Agent Alford swore out the complaint that authorized the seizure of the Silk Road servers and approximately 176,000 bitcoins traceable thereto and testified as a key witness at Ulbricht’s trial. Ulbricht is currently serving a life sentence for his crimes. These law enforcement actions and sentence were a watershed moment for law enforcement and set legal precedents in the United States. For his investigative efforts, Special Agent Alford received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award. He has been featured in print, television, radio and film, including but not limited to, the New York Times, the New York Daily News, Vanity Fair, BBC Radio, a New York Times best-selling book, and in in the A&E/BBC feature length documentary Silk Road: Drugs, Death and the Dark Web.

Steven Berryman
Retired Special Agent with IRS Criminal Investigation Division

Mr. Berryman was a Special Agent with the IRS Criminal Investigation Division for over thirty years before his retirement in June of 2018.During his years with IRS-CID, Mr. Berryman worked a variety of crimes, to include tax, narcotics, bankruptcy fraud, Ponzi schemes, terrorism, money laundering, defense contract fraud, and Bank Secrecy Act violations pertaining to financial institutions. However, for the last twenty years of his career, Mr. Berryman is most known for his work in the field of corruption, bribery, extortion, and RICO.

Mr. Berryman investigated and brought to justice many corrupt politicians, and during the last seven years of his career, was the lead IRS-CID case agent on the FIFA corruption investigation.At the present time Mr. Berryman has his own consulting and investigations firm, who’s website can be found at