"The defendants should be precluded from mentioning Operation Fast and Furious"
Prosecutors in the trial of a murdered US Border Patrol agent are trying to keep details about guns found on the murder scene from the jury because of their connection to a scandal-ridden federal program.
Between 2006 and 2011, the Arizona field office of the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) used a tactic known as “gunwalking” in a secretive program known as Operation Fast and Furious. During that time period, the ATF purposely allowed licensed firearm dealers in Phoenix and Tucson to sell weapons to illegal straw buyers, with the hope of later tracking them to Mexican drug cartels.
The operation turned out to be an embarrassing failure for the Bureau, as the ATF ended up losing track of 2,000 weapons. Since then, the Mexican government has claimed that some of these firearms have turned up in at least 10 crime scenes in that country.
Two of these guns were also found at the scene of US Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry’s death, and now case prosecutors are trying to keep the guns out of trial proceedings.