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Hearings Scheduled, Subpoenas To Be Issued In "Project Gunrunner" Investigation

Friday, June 10, 2011

The ongoing and escalating investigation into the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives' "Project Gunrunner" program has ratcheted up another notch this week as it was reported that subpoenas will soon be issued to federal officials associated with this controversial program. 

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, will issue the subpoenas in yet another attempt to find out if "Project Gunrunner" contributed to the killing of a Border Patrol agent.  Rep. Issa's committee has also announced that two hearings on this disastrous operation will be held next week (Monday from 1:00 -- 3:00 p.m., and Wednesday from 9:30 -- 11:30 a.m.).

"Fast and Furious" was a part of the five-year-old "Project Gunrunner" program that encouraged border-state dealers to sell thousands of guns to suspicious buyers, even after suspecting these buyers were working for Mexican drug cartels. 

A June 6 article in TheHill reports that two of the guns from the operation were found at the scene of an Arizona gun battle in December between U.S. law enforcement and members of a drug gang.  That exchange resulted in the tragic death of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, but officials have not revealed whether the bullet that struck him came from the guns the BATFE was supposed to be tracking.  The article also reports that guns from the "Fast and Furious" operation might have been used in an attack on a Mexican government helicopter that was grounded after being fired upon by suspected members of a drug cartel.

Issa has been critical of the Department of Justice, which oversees BATFE, for refusing to provide all of the documents he's requested and for not making available all of the officials he's attempted to interview.

According to the article, Rep. Issa said in a recent interview with Fox News, "We have a slew of subpoenas we expect to be issuing for people here in Washington.  What we haven't gotten one bit of is  --  here in Washington, far away from the actual investigation and prosecutions that they seem to be using as a façade to protect them  --  here in Washington, they're not making one agent available, one hierarchy available, and we will be issuing subpoenas because we have to," Issa said.

Stay tuned to future Grassroots Alerts for new developments.

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