September 7, 2011
The Indiana gun runner scheme surfaced when an Indiana Gun Dealer received a Demand letter Dated February 14, 2011 for records information from the “National Tracing Center” that an unusually high number of traces of new crime guns had been linked to him.
The letter demanded that the dealer comply with all records request within 30 days of receipt of the letter.
In a March 10, 2011 response letter from the Law Firm Kightlinger & Gray, LLP Attorney Brent R. Weil informed a Mr. Charles J. Houser, Chief of the National Tracing Center:
Specifically, my client participated with and cooperated in certain law enforcement operations during 2009/2010 at the behest of ATFE enforcement officers from the Evansville, Indiana office (Agent Kevin Whittaker) and in the course of doing so, followed their instructions regarding the completion of certain transactions and the delivery of firearms to purchasers who did not clear the standard NICS [National Instant Check System] background check and were suspected of being involved in the purchase and transportation of handguns out of state despite passing NICS’s background checks.
Apparently the National Tracing Center wasn’t aware that the Dealer had participated with and cooperated in certain law enforcement operations during 2009-2010 at the behest of ATF enforcement officers form the Evansville, Indiana Office.
The pattern in the Indiana gun runner case is similar to the other gun runner programs. ATF agents with the help of the FBI ran background check system (NICS) allowed straw purchases of firearms to disqualified persons mainly connected to gangs.
The investigation into the ATF Gun Runner Programs began when Senator Charles Grassley sent a January 27, 2011 letter to Kenneth Melson Acting Director of the ATF, Senator Grassley said that members of the Senate Judiciary Committee had received numerous allegations that the ATF sanctioned the sale of hundreds of weapons to suspected straw purchasers who then allegedly transported those weapons throughout the southwest border and into Mexico.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
Grassley said in his letter; I am specifically writing you concerning an ATF operation called “Project Gunrunner”. There are serious concerns that the ATF may have become careless, if not negligent, in implementing the Gunrunner strategy.
One of those Allegations, is that an individual was allowed to make a cash purchase of three firearms in Glendale, Arizona on January 16, 2010. Two of those firearms were later alleged to have been used in the murder of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry on December 14, 2010.
To date the investigation has shown that guns have been allowed to be sold and smuggled to Drug Cartels and Gangs in Mexico, Central and South America.
The newly disclosed documents suggest the allegations of a broader program of gun running into the Heartland of the USA by Government Agencies are true.
The ATF has a history of corruption and abuse. This current fiasco has taken the lives of countless numbers of people and seems to grow daily in its scope; its time we demand Congress abolish this rogue agency.
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