United States Marshals and Deputy Marshals are men and women with extensive training and skills including defensive tactics and firearms, weapons, and intelligence training. Federal Marshals make up one of the oldest law enforcement programs in the country. In the United States, a Marshal assists the Federal government by performing a variety of tasks ranging from security for judges to transporting prisoners.
One of the tasks a U.S. Marshal performs is assisting witnesses in the Witness Security Program. This program protects witnesses who are waiting to testify at trial or may have already testified against individuals involved in criminal activities or terrorist crimes. Marshals also provide security for court personnel and judges in high-profile cases such as Mafia trials and espionage cases. Marshals also help to get witnesses in protective custody set up in new locations where the witnesses and their families have been given new identities.
Another job U.S. Marshals do is track and apprehend fugitives who are on the run. Marshals hunt down fugitives in the U.S. as well as extradite fugitives hiding in other countries so they can be brought back for a trial in the U.S. Local and Federal law enforcement also enlist help from Marshals when serving warrants on dangerous criminals in the U.S.
In 1995, the U.S. Marshal Service created what is now one of the largest prisoner transport systems in the world, which operates under a collective effort with the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The prisoner transport system, known as Justice Prisoner and Alien Transport System (JPATS) moves prisoners and criminal aliens between law enforcement agencies, prisoner faculties and foreign countries by land and air.
Marshals perform other duties such as seizing property from individuals who purchased the property with funds from criminal activities. Marshals work with the U.S. Attorneys Offices and other agencies to identify and inventory the merchandise and property. The funds from the sale of the property go towards helping different law enforcement agencies with crime prevention programs.
Individuals who are considering a job with the U.S. Marshal Service should have a four-year degree, three years of relevant experience or a combination of education and experience. Candidates will also have to meet specific physical requirements as well as pass extensive background investigations. Candidates for the program must also complete training at the U.S. Marshals Service Training Academy. People who pass the exams and training start out as Deputy Marshals and are on a two-year probationary period.