Hearing set on Justice Dept. gun operation

WASHINGTON, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- A U.S. Justice Department official suggested allowing weapons to be moved to Mexico to track them to drug cartels, a released e-mail shows.

The e-mail was among documents given to congressional investigators Friday, CNN reported. It was sent by an official in the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City and showed U.S. Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer described the plan at a meeting in early 2011 and that Ken Melson, the acting head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, backed a similar plan.


Operation Fast and Furious depended on cooperation between U.S. and Mexican law enforcement agencies. The plan apparently backfired, with some weapons simply disappearing into Mexico or surfacing when they were used in crimes.

Attorney General Eric Holder is scheduled to testify Thursday before the House Investigations Committee chaired by Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif. In a letter submitted with the documents, the Justice Department described changes in procedures that have been made in the wake of Fast and Furious.

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