The Global Initiative Network

GIN Member

Leigh H. Winchell

Owner, Storms River LLC

In March of 2014, Mr. Winchell assumed the position of Deputy Director, Compliance and Enforcement sub-directorate within the World Customs Organization. He is currently responsible for compliance and enforcement policy and procedures, the global enforcement network known as CEN, training and technical assistance, as well as facilitating international cross border enforcement operations within the core areas of priority WCO compliance and enforcement: revenue compliance, drug enforcement, security, environmental crime and IPR/health and safety.

Mr. Winchell began his law enforcement career in 1984 as a Deputy Sheriff in Richland County, South Carolina. In 1987, he was hired by the U.S. Customs Service as a Special Agent/Criminal Investigator and subsequently held a variety of law enforcement positions in the U.S. Customs Service.

In the year 2000, Mr. Winchell became Director, Special Operations Division where he held principal responsibility for leading a large group of agents from the U.S. Customs Service, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Internal Revenue Service targeting the command and control of international money laundering organizations principally operating in the Americas.

From 2002 to 2012, Mr. Winchell served as the Special Agent in Charge (SAC) for the Legacy U.S. Customs Service and subsequently the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Seattle, Washington. At the time, Mr. Winchell was responsible for all investigations relative to violations of Customs and Immigration laws in the States of Alaska, Washington, Oregon and Idaho. These included conducting large-scale narcotics smuggling investigations, international money laundering investigations, significant impact investigations relating to the illicit sexual exploitation of children, Integrated Border Enforcement Team (IBET) operations and two Border Enforcement Security Task Forces (BEST).

In 2012, Mr. Winchell was promoted and re-assigned to HSI headquarters serving as an Assistant Director within ICE/HSI. In this capacity, Mr. Winchell oversaw the investigative and operational efforts of over 6,500 ICE/HSI Special Agents, assigned to 26 SAC offices, investigating matters related to national security, export enforcement, money laundering, drug and bulk-cash smuggling, human smuggling and trafficking, customs fraud, child pornography, and other financial and immigration fraud.

Mr. Winchell earned a Bachelor of Arts from Columbia International University in 1981.

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