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Tag: minorities

USA Today Investigation: ATF Drug Stings Targeted Minorities

By Brad Heath
USA Today
WASHINGTON — The nation’s top gun-enforcement agency overwhelmingly targeted racial and ethnic minorities as it expanded its use of controversial drug sting operations, a USA TODAY investigation shows.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has more than quadrupled its use of those stings during the past decade, quietly making them a central part of its attempts to combat gun crime. The operations are designed to produce long prison sentences for suspects enticed by the promise of pocketing as much as $100,000 for robbing a drug stash house that does not actually exist.

At least 91% of the people agents have locked up using those stings were racial or ethnic minorities, USA TODAY found after reviewing court files and prison records from across the United States. Nearly all were either black or Hispanic. That rate is far higher than among people arrested for big-city violent crimes, or for other federal robbery, drug and gun offenses.

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Justice Department Threatens to Sue Florida Over Voting Rights

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com
 

The Justice Department said it will sue Florida if it doesn’t scrap its controversial voter purge program, which critics says unfairly targets minorities based on largely inaccurate information, CNN reports.

At issue is a Republican-led effort to eliminate non-eligible voters in a battleground state that will play a key role in the 2012 presidential election.

The state said it identified more than 100,000 non-eligible voters who could be on the list illegally, according to CNN.

Although states have the legal authority to remove non-eligible voters, the Justice Department argues the program violates legal standards designed to avoid mistakes.

CNN reports:

While the Justice Department notes that states can legally remove non-eligible voters from their lists, the letter Monday argues that the Florida program does not comply with legal standards, has “critical imperfections, which lead to errors that harm and confuse eligible voters.”

Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties voluntarily ended the removal of names from voting lists on the recommendation of Florida county election officials, CNN reported.