The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) saw its inception on November 13, 1936 upon approval of Commonwealth Act No. 181 by the legislature. It was the the brainchild of the late President Manuel L. Quezon and Jose Yulo, then Secretary of Justice.

   Tasked with organizing a Division of Investigation or DI patterned after the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation were Thomas Dugan, a veteran American police captain from the New York Police Department and Flaviano C. Guerrero, the only Filipino member of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation.

   On the basis of stiff physical, mental, and moral standards, 45 men were selected as agents from among 300 applicants. To complement this investigative force was a civilian staff composed of doctors, chemists, fingerprint technicians, photographers, stenographers, and clerks.

    During the Japanese occupation, the DI was affiliated with the Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Philippine Constabulary known as the Bureau of Investigation (BI). Subsequently, during the post-liberation period, all available DI agents were recruited by the US Army CIC as investigators.

    Since then, the Bureau assumed an increasingly significant role. Thus, on June 19, 1947, by virtue of Republic Act No. 157, it was reorganized into the Bureau of Investigation. Later, it was amended by Executive Order No. 94 issued on October 4, 1947 renaming it to what it is presently known, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

Its Objectives

   The main objective of the National Bureau of Investigation is the establishment and maintenance of a modern, effective and efficient investigative service and research agency for the purpose of implementing fully principal functions provided under Republic Act No. 157, as amended.

Its Vision

   A world-class investigative institution - dynamic, respected and committed to the high ideals of law and order.

Its Mission

   To provide quality investigative and forensic services to the people through advanced methods and equipment in the pursuit of truth and justice.



      Under  its  enabling law, Republic  Act  157,  as  amended,  the NBI  is  empowered  to:

  • investigate crimes and other offenses against the laws of the Philippines, both on its own initiative and as public interest may require;

  • assist, when officially requested in the investigation or detection of crimes and other offenses;

  • act as national clearing house of criminal records and other information for use of all prosecuting and law enforcement entities in

  • the Philippines, of identification records of identifying marks, characteristics and ownership or possession of all firearms  and  test  bullets fired  therefrom;

  • give technical help to all prosecuting and law enforcement offices, agencies of the government, and courts which may ask for its services;

  • extend its services in the investigation of cases of administrative or civil in nature in which the government is interested;

  • establish and maintain an up-to-date scientific crime laboratory and conduct researches in furtherance of scientific knowledge in criminal investigation;

  • coordinate with other national or local agencies in the maintenance of peace and order;

  • undertake the instruction and training of a representative number of city and municipal peace officers at the request of their respective superiors along effective methods of crime investigation and detection in order to insure greater efficiency in the discharge of their duties.

Organizational Structure/Jurisdiction

            The NBI is a government entity that is civilian in character, and national in scope  which  is   under the Department of Justice.

            It is  headed  by a director and with an assistant director and six (6) deputy-directors for -- Special Investigation Services (SIS); Regional Operations Services (ROS); Intelligence Services (IS); Technical Services (TS); Administrative Services (AS);  and Comptroller Services (CS).

The  “Two  Pillar- Rule”

            To  keep the  standard  of  professionalism   in  the investigation of  cases,   thoroughness   and  legality  has  always  been  adhered  to  by  the  NBI.   The legality of  the Bureau’s  activity  is  assured  by  its  legal  and  Evaluation  Division, which is  tasked  with providing  legal counsel  to the Director, legal services to the Bureau, evaluate  the investigation  reports of the  agents, and conduct  legal  researches and studies. 

Circumstances  under  which  the  NBI  may  be contacted

            When a  crime  has been  committed    or  is  about  to  be  committed,   any  aggrieved  person  may  seek  NBI  assistance.  Any   person  possessing   valuable  information  in  connection  with   any  violation  of  Philippine  laws  is welcome  at  any  NBI  office  if he  is  willing  furnish  the  Bureau  with  said  information.

            Those  who may  wish  to  file  their complaints  in  Manila,   may  go directly  to the  NBI  Complaints  and  Recording  Division   (CRD)  and file  his/her  complaint  under oath. Walk-in  complainants  in  field  offices  may  see the chief or any agent  thereat,  for  purposes of filing  his/her  complaint.

            When  the aggrieved party  cannot personally  undertake  this,  a letter   addressed   to  the  NBI Director  containing  the  said  complaint   shall suffice. The  NBI in some  instances, may be called to attend to criminal  cases already  under  investigation by  the local police. However, the requesting  party or aggrieved party shall  so state  in  the complaint dissatisfaction  over  the handling  of  the case,  and/or upon  directive   from higher authorities.

            All forms  of  assistance extended by the NBI  to other  government institutions  as  well  as  to the private  sector  are  ABSOLUTELY  FREE.