Guardia di Finanza

Guardia di Finanza
CoA Guardia di Finanza.svg
Coat of arms of the Guardia di Finanza, depicting the Cimon della Pala
MottoNec Recisa Recedit
Does not retreat even if broken
Agency overview
FormedOctober 5, 1774
Employees68,134[1]
Jurisdictional structure
National agencyItaly
Operations jurisdictionItaly
Governing bodyMinistry of Economy and Finances (Italy)
General nature
Specialist jurisdictions
  • Customs.
  • Serious or complex fraud, commercial crime, fraud covering multiple lower level jurisdictions.
  • Taxation.
HeadquartersRome
Elected officer responsible

The Guardia di Finanza (GdF) (Italian pronunciation: [ˈɡwardja di fiˈnantsa]; is an Italian law enforcement agency under the authority of the Minister of Economy and Finance. It is a militarized police force, forming a part of the Ministry of Economy and Finance, not the Ministry of Defence. Guardia di Finanza is essentially responsible for dealing with financial crime and smuggling; it has also evolved into Italy's primary agency for suppressing the illegal drug trade. It maintains over 600 boats and ships and more than 100 aircraft to serve in its mission of patrolling Italy's territorial waters.

Interpol summarizes the Guardia di Finanza (Ministry of Economy and Finance) as "a force with military status and nationwide remit for financial crime investigations; Its responsibilities include investigative and law enforcement duties, and the security of motorway, railway, and waterway networks and primary agency for suppressing the illegal drug trade".[2]

Mission

The mission and institutional tasks of Guardia di Finanza are stated in the law 189 of April 23, 1959 and 68/2001 and are subdivided into priority ones (preventing, investigating and reporting financial evasions and violations, overseeing the compliance with the provisions of politico-economic interest and surveillance at sea for financial police purposes) and contribution ones (maintaining public order and safety and political-military defense of the borders).

The primary goal of the Guardia di Finanza is to protect the legal economy and the businesses operating in compliance with the law, while ensuring that the Republic, the European Union, the regions, and the local governments can rely on a regular inflow and appropriate use of the resources meant for the community, and for supporting policies for economic and social revival and development.

Its activities are connected with financial, economic, judiciary and public safety: tax evasion, financial crimes, smuggling, money laundering, international illegal drug trafficking, illegal immigration, customs and borders checks, copyright violations, anti-Mafia operations, credit card fraud, cybercrime, counterfeiting, terrorist financing, maintaining public order, and safety, political and military defense of the Italian borders.

Europol (the EU's law enforcement agency), summarizes this force as "organized according to a military structure ... The tasks of the Guardia di Finanza consist of the prevention, search and denunciation of evasions and financial violations, in the supervision of the observance of the provisions of political and economic interest and in the surveillance at sea for financial police purposes. Therefore the Guardia di Finanza is a police force with general jurisdiction over all economic and financial matters; it also contributes to the maintenance of order and public security and to military defense along national borders".[3]