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Super Bowl LV: Tampa's Homeland Security division adds an extra layer of security in preparation for the big game

Counterfeit goods, human trafficking, and security are high on Homeland Security's list.

TAMPA, Fla. — Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Tampa is working with local, state, and federal law enforcement partners to provide essential public safety measures throughout Tampa Bay and its surrounding areas to address any criminal threats leading up to Super Bowl LV.

"HSI Tampa is working hard to make sure this event is safe for everyone despite the global pandemic," HSI Tampa acting Special Agent in Charge Kevin Sibley wrote in a press release.

HSI Tampa started preparing for the big game more than a year ago. More than a dozen HSI Tampa special agents attended Super Bowl LIV in Miami as part of the preparation process.

High on HSI Tampa's priority list are efforts to protect intellectual property rights, prevent the sale of counterfeit goods, fight human trafficking and protect the Bay area.

During a Zoom interview with 10 Tampa Bay, Sibley explained how sports fans can spot counterfeit goods, and what people can do if they suspect a person is involved in human trafficking. 

"While we work hard to support IPR and human trafficking missions all year, large-scale events, like the Super Bowl, typically bring some specific types of increased criminal activity," Sibley stated.

During Super Bowl week, HSI will work alongside state and local law enforcement, private industry, and non-governmental organizations to provide essential public outreach and support in the worldwide battle against human trafficking.

The Tampa Police Department, Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, and the FBI teamed up to produce a public service announcement that includes what people should look for if they suspect someone is trafficked.

The Human Trafficking PSA is available here.

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