Numerous FBI agents sent to Asia to help combat international crime and terrorism have been ordered back to the United States amid allegations of misconduct -- reportedly involving parties and prostitutes, Fox News has learned.
The allegations are linked to agents in six cities – some in East and Southeast Asia – and are related to parties and interactions with sex workers, people familiar with the matter told the Wall Street Journal. Specifics about the claims were not immediately clear.
“Upon learning of these allegations of misconduct, action was taken to reassign certain personnel to non-operational roles while the allegations are reviewed,” the FBI told Fox News in a statement Friday. “All FBI employees are held to the highest standards of conduct, and allegations against any employee are taken very seriously."
Sources told Fox News a handful of FBI personnel were sent back to the U.S. as the Department of Justice Inspector General investigated the claims.
Former agents told the Wall Street Journal the FBI has offices in dozens of U.S. embassies around the world and the employees assigned to the posts -- who are working to fight crime and terrorism -- often cultivate relationships with local officials over late-night drinks.
Prostitution is also legal or tolerated in some Asian countries.
Those familiar with the allegations added FBI officials have been concerned with prostitution-related issues as they fight to prevent foreign intelligence services from compromising agents and embassy employees.
Fox News' Jake Gibson contributed to this report.