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.