Donald Schmidt // Vice President
Chase & Associates, Inc.
Vice President, Tampa, FL 2004 - Present
Routinely conducts and supports investigations involving complex financial issues, theft of intellectual property rights, employment issues and fraud. In addition, he supervises surveillance and other tactical endeavors undertaken by the company on behalf of clients.
Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (formerly U.S. Customs)
Group Supervisor, Tampa, FL 1997 - 2004
As a Supervisory Special Agent with U.S. Customs and later Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Mr. Schmidt managed and directed 10 special agents, an intelligence research specialist and an investigative assistant in conducting numerous Federal criminal investigations. These investigations included the smuggling of narcotics, money laundering, Customs fraud, intellectual property rights, child pornography and the export of technology and stolen vehicles. Additionally, he managed and directed a Department of Treasury, certified undercover operation having international scope. He was responsible for facilities and security management, preparation of semi annual operating budgets and the preparation of technical surveillance plans for the undercover operation.
Mr. Schmidt supervised criminal and civil investigations of violations that occurred within the Port of Tampa. He established working relationships with port contractors, the Tampa Port Authority, carriers and various law enforcement agencies. He assisted port officials in the preparation of security plans for technical surveillance and strategic criminal intelligence gathering within the port.
In furtherance of numerous international smuggling investigations, Mr. Schmidt established liaison with foreign law enforcement and U.S. Embassy officials in countries in South America, the Caribbean and Southeast Asia. He conducted money laundering investigations during an assignment to the Customs Attaché office at the U.S. Embassy in Manila, Philippines. While stationed temporarily in Manila, he developed course material and provided law enforcement training to Philippine army intelligence officers and Philippine national provincial and local police officials.
Mr. Schmidt maintained a secret security clearance during this assignment.
U.S. Customs Service, Office of Investigations
Senior Special Agent, Tampa, FL 1986 - 1997
As a Senior Special Agent with U.S. Customs, Mr. Schmidt conducted complex international criminal and civil investigations of violations of Federal money laundering, narcotics and Customs fraud statutes. Mr. Schmidt's investigations resulted in successful prosecutions of money laundering and narcotics smuggling organizations and included convictions for continuing criminal enterprise and RICO violations. He directed numerous undercover investigations utilizing a Department of Treasury certified undercover operation. Mr. Schmidt led several narcotics task force investigations with other federal, state and local law enforcement participation. He conducted liaison with foreign government law enforcement and customs officials in joint operations aimed at international narcotics smuggling organizations. He routinely prepared detailed reports of investigation for presentation to the U.S. Attorney's Office and to Federal Grand Juries. He utilized investigative techniques including undercover operations, document analysis and technical vehicle, aircraft and marine surveillance.
Mr. Schmidt assisted the U.S. Secret Service by proving physical security of presidential nominees and diplomats as a Secret Service Protection Detail member.
U.S Fish and Wildlife Service, Division of Law Enforcement
Special Agent, Various Posts, 1977 - 1986
Mr. Schmidt managed and directed criminal and civil investigations involving domestic and international violations of Federal wildlife protection statutes including the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species. He conducted criminal and civil investigations of endangered wildlife habitat destruction by commercial entities including land developers and mining companies. He led numerous successful undercover operations aimed at domestic and international trade in protected wildlife species. This included acting as the primary undercover operative in a yearlong undercover storefront operation focused on the illicit reptile trade. He provided training to state and foreign wildlife officers regarding federal wildlife statutes. As an assistant to the Special Agent in Charge of the Branch of Special Operations in Washington, D.C., Mr. Schmidt directed 6 special agents conducting multiple covert operations in diverse areas of the country. These investigations were aimed at violations involving the commercialization of wildlife. During his assignment in St. Petersburg, Florida, Mr. Schmidt trained and supervised U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Wildlife Inspectors working at the Port of Tampa.
Education and Training
- Bachelor of Science, Wildlife Management - University of Maine, 1975
- Criminal Investigator School - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1977
- Fish and Wildlife Investigator School - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1977
- Customs Basic Investigator School - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1986
- Senior Special Agent School - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1991
- U.S. Customs Supervisor School - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1998
- Undercover Operations Managers School - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 2000
- Interviewing and Interrogation Techniques - John Reid and Associates, Chicago, 1977
- Asset Identification and Removal - U.S. Department of Justice, 1998
- Professional Captains License Course - Sea School, St. Petersburg, FL, 1999
- Managing Employee Safety and Health - U.S. Customs, 2001
- Fitness for Managers - Cooper Institute, Dallas, 2002
- Distinguished Graduate (Criminal Investigator School) - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1977
- National Monitor Award for excellence in wildlife conservation, 1981
- Honor Graduate (Customs Basic, 1st in class combined Academics, Firearms & Fitness) - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1986
- Academic Achievement Award (Customs Basic 1st in class) - Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, 1986
- Over 20 performance awards during law enforcement career
- Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association - Member, 1980 - Present
- Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association - Executive Vice President, Tampa Chapter, 1999 - Present
- Association of Former Customs Special Agents - Member, 2004 - Present