Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Guns, Grenades and the Smell of a Cover Up

The gentlemen at Sipsey Street Irregulars are doing the country a service with their reporting on the goings on at the U.S. Mexican border. Everyone has heard of Operation Gunwalker where the ATF allowed guns purchased in the United States by straw purchasers to walk into Mexico. Now we find that guns weren't the only things walking.

Published in the Wall Street Journal (pay site) and discussed here we learn that federal authorities let an Arizona man accused of supplying grenades to a Mexican cartel go.
U.S. officials said missteps in the case, which hasn't been previously disclosed, are being investigated by the Justice Department and Congress. Federal agents in 2009-10 at the Phoenix office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives led the case against the suspect, who they believed was dealing grenades to cartels in Mexico. The case was overseen by prosecutors in the Arizona U.S. attorney's office, the U.S. officials said.

The Arizona U.S. attorney's office and the Phoenix ATF office are the Justice Department units behind another botched operation, called Fast and Furious, which has been the subject of intense congressional interest this year. The Fast and Furious program allowed suspected smugglers to buy about 2,000 firearms, some of which later turned up at drug-related crime scenes in Mexico and the U.S.

Jean Baptiste Kingery, the suspect in the grenades case, was arrested Aug. 31 in Mexico and has been charged with violating that nation's organized-crime laws, according to U.S. officials.
Hours later he walked out of the precinct and on down to Mexico with hundreds of grenade parts destined for cartels. Read the whole thing.

If you are following the happenings at the border, you will recall that in late August a grenade attack killed 53 people and injured 8 others at a casino in Monterrey, Mexico. Clearly these types of weapons are being used with increasing frequency and devastation to innocent Mexican civilians and police. For some very interesting background see this article, "How does clandestine U.S. Mexican policy related to casino attack?"

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