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Journal Sentinel Editorial: ATF’s Stings Were an Embarrassing ‘Joke’ by Federal Government

By Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 
Editorial 

The deputy director of the ATF told a congressional subcommittee last week that the agency is out of the business of undercover storefront stings for now after embarrassing revelations in this newspaper that illustrated how badly botched some of these operations were.

Thomas E. Brandon told the House Judiciary’s Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security that there were no operations underway and that the ATF had beefed up oversight.

That’s good, because the agency’s stings were a joke.

A series of Journal Sentinel articles found that the agency used mentally disabled people to promote operations and then arrested them on drug and gun charges; opened storefronts near churches and schools and attracted kids with free video games and alcohol. Agents paid too much for guns, leading folks to buy guns elsewhere and sell them back to the government at drastically inflated prices, and agents let armed felons leave the phony storefronts and bought stolen goods, which made crime worse in nearby neighborhoods.

U.S. Rep. James Sensenbrenner, chairman of the subcommittee, called the Milwaukee sting an “abysmal failure.”

To read more click here.

 

 


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