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Ex-U.S. Atty. Dennis Burke Fesses Up to Leaking Document About ATF Whistleblower


U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Ex-Arizona U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke has admitted that he leaked a sensitive document about an ATF agent, who was a whistleblower in the latest mess known as Operation Fast and Furious, according to Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Ia).

In a press release, Grassley stated that the leaked document was “deemed so sensitive by the Justice Department that it was not provided to Congress, except in a secured room at department headquarters.”

The leak pertained to John Dodson, an ATF agent who testified before Congress about his failed attempts to try and get the agency to stop the gun walking practice of Operation Fast and Furious, which encouraged gun dealers in Arizona to sell to straw purchasers, all with the hopes of tracing the weapons to Mexican cartels.

“Leaking sensitive documents to the press and retaliating against whistleblowers is not good faith cooperation with Congress,” Grassley said in a statement. “The Justice Department confirmed that the Inspector General continues to investigate the leak which means there are others who may be involved in drafting and distributing the talking points and document to the press.”

In a Nov. 8 letter to the Justice Department Inspector General’s Office,  and posted on Politico, Burke’s attorney Lee Stein of Phoenix stated:

“As Dennis told your office on August 16, 2011, he provided the memo to a reporter he had known for some time in response to the reporter’s request. The reporter, who initiated the contact with Dennis, was working on several stories involving Operation Fast and Furious.

“It was clear to Dennis from their conversation that the reporter had either seen the memo or had it read to him.

“Dennis’s intention was to give context to information that the reporter already had to explain that investigations similar to Operation Fast and Furious had been previously proposed by ATF.  The investigation proposed by Agent Dodson was closed, and the memo did not contain any Grand Jury or otherwise classified information.”


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