A perceptual reasoning system adaptively extracting, associating, and fusing information from multiple sources, at various levels of abstraction, is considered as the building block for the next generation of surveillance systems. A system architecture is presented which makes use of both centralized and distributed predetection fusion combined with intelligent monitor and control coupling both on-platform and off-board track and decision level fusion results. The goal of this system is to create a `gestalt fused sensor system' whose information product is greater than the sum of the information products from the individual sensors and has performance superior to either individual or a sub-group of combined sensors. The application of this architectural concept to the law enforcement arena (e.g. drug interdiction) utilizing multiple spatially and temporally diverse surveillance platforms and/or information sources, is used to illustrate the benefits of the adaptive perceptual reasoning system concept.