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OU Legal Counsel informs employees of potential visits from 'various' state, federal agencies in regular memo

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The OU Office of Legal Counsel recently sent an email to university faculty and staff, informing employees of procedures due to a possible increased presence of state and federal agents on campus.

Anil Gollahalli, OU vice president and general counsel, sent an email July 3 to an OU employee with procedures for how OU employees should interact with any state or federal agents who contact them. The employee then forwarded the message to others.

“As many of you are aware, state and federal agencies have recently increased their review of college and university activities, particularly those related to grants and contracts, controlled research, and interactions with international institutions and researchers,” Gollahalli wrote in the email. 

Gollahalli wrote the university has “seen an increase in on-campus visits” from agents of “various state and federal law enforcement agencies,” informing employees that investigators or agents may contact them directly to request information. 

The memo instructs any employees who encounter a federal or state agent to verify the agent’s name and the information they are requesting, copy the agent’s credentials, notify their supervisor of the encounter and to contact the OU Office of Legal Counsel before providing the agent information. The employee should stay with the investigator while they are on the premises, and copy any information the investigator plans to remove.

A university spokesperson told The Daily in an email this week that the memo was an updated version of one OU sends approximately every two years.

“It is designed to ensure our employees are made aware of OU policies and procedures for responding to investigators,” the spokesperson wrote, adding that OU is “generally aware” universities are seeing more contact from government investigators, and the university would be unable to comment on any potential investigations.

The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation is currently investigating sexual harassment allegations against former OU President David Boren. 

Also, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement raids are scheduled to begin nationwide Sunday, according to Homeland Security officials cited in an article published Thursday by the New York Times.

It is unknown if the increased presence of federal and state agents is related to a specific or ongoing investigation or operation, or which agencies may be present on campus.

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