DEA agent's work led to capture of 'Merchant of Death'

Tuesday - 8/14/2012, 9:21am EDT

Lou Milione, special agent and group supervisor, DEA

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Lou Milione capture a notorious arms trafficker known as the "Merchant of Death." He is a special agent and group supervisor for the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Milione and his team led the high-stakes undercover investigation that took down Viktor Bout, a man who supplied dictators, warlords and drug cartels.

Milione's team has earned a spot as a Service to America Medal finalist.


Federal News Radio asked the Sammies finalists to tell us a bit about themselves.

What's the best piece of advice (or words of wisdom) you've ever received and who gave it to you?

My late father-in-law, Joe Restic, who served in the OSS during WWII and was the head football coach at Harvard University for more than twenty years, often stated: "If it isn't true, don't say it. If it isn't yours, don't take it and if it isn't right, don't do it." Pretty simple but some of the best advice I ever received.

Who is your biggest role model and why?

My late father, Vic Milione, who was a great father in all ways and who served 35 years at the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (currently in Wilmington, Del.). He spent his life working for a cause he believed in and for the country that he loved dearly "educating for liberty." Most of his work was done "behind the scenes," without self-aggrandizement and with tremendous passion.

What's the biggest challenge you've had to overcome (personally or professionally) and how did you overcome it?

I can't really list one particular professional challenge. In the DEA's work, there are always obstacles in every investigation that need to be overcome. Any that I have personally successfully dealt with always involved great collaboration with co-workers and the entire team's selfless efforts attacking the obstacle.

What's the last thing you read and what's next on your reading list?

The American Spirit by Ed Feulner and Brian Tracy The American Cause by Russell Kirk

Meet the rest of the 2012 Service to America Medal finalists.