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Issa subpoenas U.S. Att'y Az criminal chief over Fast & Furious

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Issa subpoenas U.S. Att'y Az criminal chief over Fast & Furious

Rep. Darrell Issa, continuing to push a look into the Fast and Furious gunrunning investigation, has subpoenaed the chief of the U.S. Attorney's Office criminal division in Arizona.

Patrick J. Cunningham refused to voluntarily testify before a House committee, Issa said.

Cunningham was subpoenaed to give a deposition before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform next Tuesday, a press release from the committee said.

Issa is the chairman of the committee, and the California Republican has pushed an investigation into the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms' Fast and Furious operation, which allowed illegal straw buyers of guns to deliver them to Mexican drug cartels in the hopes of learning more about their operations.

"During the course of our investigation, the Committee has learned of the outsized role played by the Arizona U.S. Attorney’s Office – and you specifically – in approving the unacceptable tactics used in Fast and Furious," Issa wrote to Cunningham, informing him of the subpoena.

"Senior Justice Department officials have recently told the Committee that you relayed inaccurate and misleading information to the Department in preparation for its initial response to Congress," Issas wrote.

"These officials told us that even after Congress began investigating Fast and Furious, you continued to insist that no unacceptable tactics were used.  In fact, documents obtained confidentially just last week appear to confirm that you remained steadfast in your belief that no unacceptable tactics were used, even after the Department’s initial response to the congressional inquiry.  Given that the Attorney General has labeled these tactics as unacceptable and Fast and Furious as ‘fundamentally flawed,’ this position is startling," Issa wrote.

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