Section 68. The colonel may, at the request of the director of the bureau of special investigations, with the approval of the fraudulent claims commission, appoint as special state police officers employees of said bureau who have undergone training as required by said colonel. These special state police officers shall serve for 1 year, subject to removal by the colonel, and they shall have and exercise throughout the commonwealth the same powers as state police officers to serve warrants and other criminal processes for any criminal offense resulting from either a fraudulent claim for payment or service under any assistance program administered by the department of transitional assistance or any program administered by the department of children and families or a receipt of payment or services by a person entitled thereto or for any violation of chapter 273 relative to the support of spouses and children for whom the department of transitional assistance is entitled to receive payment, or in whose behalf said department is giving aid. They shall not have the authority to arrest without a warrant. They shall report to the colonel as to their official acts at such times and in such manner as he may require. They shall serve without pay, except their regular compensation as employees of said bureau, and they shall receive no fees for service or return of any criminal process. This section shall not be construed as authorizing any person appointed as a special state police officer as provided herein to carry a firearm in the performance of his duties.