|Facts are Stubborn Things...#2 at Justice Briefed on Agent Terry Shooting|
|News Releases - General Info|
|Written by Grassley Press|
|Tuesday, 22 November 2011 09:38|
Senate Judiciary Committee Oversight Hearing with Attorney General Eric Holder, Nov. 8, 2011
Details of Agent Terry Shooting Briefed to the No. 2 at Justice
Senator Grassley: “Did Mr. Grindler ever say anything to you in December or January about the connection between the ATF and the guns found at Terry’s murder scene?”
Attorney General Holder: “No, he did not, but I think it’s understandable in the sense that the information that was shared with him did not indicate that any of the tactics that we find in the flawed Operation Fast and Furious operation, were actually mentioned in the e-mail that – that you reference. So he did not share that information with me.”
The timeline itself should have raised questions about the tactics to Deputy Attorney General Grindler. The email Mr. Grindler received on December 17, 2010, read: “[Y]ou may recall that a CBP border agent was killed on Tuesday in a firefight in Arizona involving along the Mexican border [sic]. Two of the weapons recovered from the scene (AK-47 variants) have been linked to Jaime Avila Jr., a straw firearms purchaser that ATF and USAO have been investigating since November 2009 as part of its larger Fast and Furious operation. … ATF agents, assisted by ICE, USMS, and Phoenix Police, arrested Avila on Wednesday for falsification of ATF forms” (emphasis added).
Thus, the email to Mr. Grindler made clear that this known straw purchaser had been under investigation for more than a year, and since Avila’s falsification of forms didn’t just happen on December 15, he was being arrested purely in reaction to the fact that his gun appeared at the Terry murder scene. Jaime Avila could have been arrested for straw purchasing any time between January 2010 and Agent Terry’s death on December 15, 2010.
Additionally, information on Avila, along with other operational details of Fast and Furious, had already been presented to Mr. Grindler in a detailed March 2010 briefing. At that time he was informed that Avila had purchased 17 weapons, as well as that three other straw buyers had already bought 670 guns by that time. Mr. Grindler’s own notes on the presentation show that he knew ATF was following those guns to stash houses, and yet were nevertheless being recovered in Mexico, implying that ATF was not maintaining surveillance.
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