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Diane Publishing Books
Interim Review of ATF’s Project Gunrunner
Michael D. Gulledge (ed)
Mexican drug trafficking organizations (cartels) are a pervasive organized crime threat to the U.S., according to the Dept. of Justice’s(DOJ) 2009 National Drug Threat Assessment. The cartels use firearms trafficked from the U.S. – primarily from the Southwest border states of Texas, California, Arizona, and to a lesser extent, New Mexico – in their lucrative drug trafficking operations. Project Gunrunner is the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF) national initiative to reduce firearms trafficking to Mexico and associated violence along the Southwest border. In the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and in FY 2009 appropriations, ATF received $21.9 million in funding to support and expand Project Gunrunner. In May 2009, the DOJ Office of the Inspector Gen. (OIG) opened an evaluation of Project Gunrunner, which is ongoing. OIG is issuing this interim report on Project Gunrunner plans as ATF is expanding the project. OIG concluded that aspects of ATF’s Project Gunrunner expansion plans will enhance its ability to combat firearms trafficking. However, some planned Project Gunrunner activities do not appear to represent the best use of resources to reduce firearms trafficking, and issues with new office locations, staffing structure, personnel with Spanish proficiency, and program measures need to be addressed. Figures.
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