A new lawsuit by Utah attorney Jesse Trentadue may result in the release of video footage showing what happened at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995.
Last week Trentadue sent an Oklahoma City news station several documents. One revealed an FBI agent had offered to sell NBC Dateline surveillance footage of the terrorist attack that killed 168 people for over a million dollars.
In 2011 the FBI told Trentadue it could not find surveillance videotapes from the bombing and would not continue looking for them.
Trentadue sued the FBI and the CIA in an effort to get video taken by exterior cameras on the Murrah building and dashboard camera video from the Oklahoma Highway Patrol’s arrest of Timothy McVeigh, who was executed after a conviction in the case.
The FBI claimed electronic databases and searches of FBI crime labs, evidence centers and a warehouse in Oklahoma City had not turned up the records. The agency said continuing the search would be “unreasonably burdensome” and would take a single staff person more than 18 months to conduct, according to court papers.
The FBI explanation is “nothing but more of the same institutionalized dishonesty, deception and disrespect for the Constitution,” Trentadue wrote in an email to the Associated Press.
Guthrie is said to have committed suicide a few days before he was to testify against one of his bank robbery gang accomplices.
A previous lawsuit by Trentadue revealed a role played by the FBI in the bombing.
“During the process of his lawsuit, Trentadue was able to receive documents with names blacked out that show the FBI’s OKC bombing informants were conducting armed robberies with Timothy McVeigh in order to fund the construction of the fertilizer bomb used in the attack on the federal building,” Paul Joseph Watson and Alex Jones wrote on February 22, 2007. “The documents also show that McVeigh called Elohim City two days before the bombing asking for help. Four months before the bombing, an FBI informant told his superiors of the attack plan and said that the Alfred P. Murrah building had been scouted.”
In 2004, a declassified FBI memo obtained by an Oklahoma newspaper revealed the existence of a Southern Poverty Law Center informant connected to the Elohim City operation. “References to an informant working for the SPLC at Elohim City on the eve of the Oklahoma City bombing raises serious questions as to what the SPLC might know about McVeigh’s activities during the final hours before the fuse was lit in Oklahoma City – but which the SPLC has failed to disclose publicly, the newspaper reported.
Additional FOIA documents establish the fact the FBI was working with the SPLC. An unclassified copy of a memorandum marked “From the Director of the FBI” contains several references to an FBI undercover operation at Elohim City before the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building and also mentions the SPLC informant.
“If I told you what we were doing there, I would have to kill you,” Morris Dees of the Southern Poverty Law Center told reporters.
The SPLC has played an instrumental role in attempting to link the militia movement to domestic terrorist activities.
The previous lawsuit also revealed a CIA connection to events following the bombing.