Fast & Furious scandal: AZ federal official pleads 5th

Patrick Cunningham, the chief of the Criminal Division of the Arizona U.S. Attorney’s Office, is refusing to testify before Congress regarding the botched federal scheme known as Operation Fast and Furious. The gun-running scandal conceived in 2009 by the Phoenix Division of ATF — a Justice Department agency — was responsible for supplying U.S.weapons to Mexican drug cartels.

The operation which U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder now acknowledges was “fundamentally flawed,” occurred under his watch with his Department’s knowledge and approval. The program’s guns have been linked to countless murders in Mexico, and was only shut down after the death of U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry in the Arizona desert. The two guns recovered at the murder scene both traced back to Fast and Furious. Watch here as Eric Holder actually refused to apologize to Brian Terry’s family.

Through his attorney, Patrick Cunningham informed the House Oversight Committee that he will invoke the Fifth Amendment protection against self incrimination. FOX News has posted a copy of the letter from Cunningham’s attorney Tobin Romero, a specialist in white collar crime.

Cunningham was ordered Wednesday to appear before Chairman Darrell Issa and the House Oversight Committee regarding his role in the scheme that sent more than 2,000 guns to the violent Sinaloa drug cartel.

Cunningham claims to be a victim of a conflict between two branches of government and says he will not be compelled to be a witness against himself, or make statements that could be later used by a grand jury or special prosecutor to indict him on criminal charges.

Cunningham’s no fool. He undoubtedly remembers that within days of testifying before a Congressional committee about his office’s role in the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms gun-smuggling scheme, his boss former U.S. Attorney for Arizona Dennis Burke submitted his letter of resignation and was immediately out the door.

It was previously revealed that the Department of Justice released a dangerous explosives runner after he had been arrested and in custody. He was moving grenades and manufacturing improvised explosive devices, supplying weapons to cartels.

Yet last August, Burke went out of his way to disqualify agent Terry’s family as crime victims, since that would further implicate him and his minions. But while still on the job, he expanded his duties to include different classes of victims as you can read here.

Judicial Watch’s blog, Corruption Chronicles, provides an in-depth report detailing the Obama administration’s abrupt sealing of court records containing the sordid facts related to the murder of agent Brian Terry by Mexican drug smugglers.

This outrageous deceit by Obama’s U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has gone on long enough. He and many of his associate hustlers need to be shown the door.

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15 Responses to Fast & Furious scandal: AZ federal official pleads 5th

  1. Kathy says:

    Question – if Cunningham disqualified the Terry family as crime victims, then why the 5th?? Obviously Brian Terry’s death is a CRIME and Holder, Obama, and many many people in ATF are responsible. There are thousand’s killed with F & F weapons in Mexico and still no justice for them as well. Cunningham needs to be fired and face the consequences of his decisions and actions – especially while he is covering for this Admin. Of course, no word from AZ Senators Kyl or McCain – who voted for Holder’s confirmation.

    • Maggie says:

      Another in agreement, Kathy! Flushing the Johns began with John Shadegg (who began his career as a conservative only to veer left), and now Jon Kyl (retiring since so many of us are increasingly tired of him). The one who is the worst of all is John McCain, and His demented Egoness will be there for another FIVE years!. How right you are in pointing out that neither McCain nor Kyl have uttered a peep.

  2. Doc says:

    Oooohhh Kathy! No truer words were spoken! I’ve said it a hunnert times…”Our elected representatives continue to sit on their hands…”

    This is an absolute disgrace, especially in light of the BLAITANT HARRASSMENT of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Dept. in general, & the Re-Re-Re-ELECTED SHERIFF JOE ARPIO by o-bow-mao’s & mr. holder’s “IN”-justice dept…

  3. Seen It All says:

    Patrick Cunningham and his former boss Dennis Burke were both raised up and promoted under Janet Napolitano. Janet Napolitano works at the left hand of Obama. That’s why Eric Holder won’t apologize and why when Burke became a liability, he was expendable and quickly shuttled off to pasture. The show must go on. The plays are pawns in the leftists much bigger game.

  4. GreenAcres says:

    Don’t think for a minute that Mr. Patrick (Pat) Cunningham will suffer any negative consequences regarding Operation Fast & Furious. This man has spent his career working for the government—-including many years at the State of Arizona Attorney General’s Office in their Criminal Division.
    Interesting that during his years at the State A.G’s Office (when Grant Woods and then Janet Napolitano were in charge), Patrick (Pat) Cunningham regularly held mandatory staff meetings where he would lecture employees about being Very Careful when using E-mail.
    So, I have to believe that he has covered his tracks extremely well.
    And I have to believe that Janet Napolitano and Eric Holder will take very good care of him. They deserve each other.

    • Doc says:

      yeah but WE don’t deserve ANY OF ‘EM!

    • Villanova says:

      GA:
      They didn’t do much of a job taking care of Dennis Burke. He was thrown out without a second thought. These are tough characters and no one is safe, not even their own toadies. If I were Patrick Cunningham, I’d be quaking in my boots. He knows he’s easily expendable.

      • GreenAcres says:

        Regarding Burke: He resigned. I have to believe that he is being taken care of. The Lefties are quite good at recycling.

      • Villanova says:

        GA:
        Burke resigned under pressure. This was not his choice. He was shown the door.The last I heard he was not working, so it’s doubtful he’s been recycled. Democrat operatives can’t disappoint. They must also swallow the cyanide pill for their superiors. Burke did both.

  5. Braveheart says:

    Cunningham’s got pull. One of his daughters works in D.C. as a press assistant to the democrats on the House Armed Services Committee. Wonder if Aunt Janet might have had a hand in that?

    • Doc says:

      SRA-Please forgive me for what I’m about to do. But I simply can’t help myself!

      -Is it just me…or does this guy look like th’ BIGGEST BOZO EVER…? So on top of his Lack of Character, Integrety, & RESPECT for his employers, (That’d be US, by th’ way…) he looks like…that…

      …whatta SCHMUCK!

  6. FireAxeMan says:

    Soooo, there is corruption in every government office paid or volunteer and in all parties it is not going away absolute power corrupts absolutely, do not be deceived. That being said you can tell the measure of a man by what he has done in the past, we all make mistakes here and there but a career liar and cheater of the public trust will continue doing so even after caught in the act will deny, deny, deny.

  7. Steve says:

    The Justice Department needs a thorough housecleaning, starting with Eric Holder. For Obama to keep this man on is a clear signal that no one will take down his “first black US Attorney General.” This has nothing to do with race and everything to do with arrogance and incompetence.

  8. Another LD 20 PC says:

    Just remember the weasel politics practiced by this administration, and you will understand the justice Dept. Get out and vote, stop saying “both parties are the same” or “What good will it do”, or “the weather is bad”. VOTE VOTE VOTE. In 2008 many Republican’s stayed home, I swore I would never vote for McCain, I swallowed hard and did vote for him, this election I do not care who our nominee is, I am voting and I hope all do the same.