The FBI Hostage Rescue Team (HRT) is the counterterrorism and hostage-rescue unit of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation. The HRT is trained to rescue American citizens and allies who are held hostage by hostile forces, usually terrorists and/or criminals. The Hostage Rescue Team was founded in 1982 by Danny Coulson, former deputy assistant director of the FBI, and completed its final certification exercise in October, 1983.
It was originally composed of 50 operators, which was later increased to over 90. The HRT commonly functions as a high-level national SWAT team in extremely sensitive or dangerous situations. Today, it is part of the Tactical Support Branch of the FBI’s Critical Incident Response Group (CIRG), and is based at the FBI Academy at the Quantico Marine Corps Base in Stafford County, Virginia.