FBI reports weapons, 184 notebooks missing

FBI reports weapons, 184 notebooks missing

By Preeti Vasishtha

GCN Staff

JULY 18—Attorney General John Ashcroft has ordered a departmentwide review to account for Justice Department equipment after the FBI reported hundreds of weapons and notebook PCs missing or stolen over the last decade.

The FBI's disclosure follows an inspector general's audit in March that found 539 weapons unaccounted for at the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

'The Department must ensure the highest standards for the inventory and accounting of law enforcement equipment issued to department employees and agents,' Ashcroft said.

The FBI reported Tuesday that nearly 450 firearms, including semiautomatic pistols, revolvers, assault rifles and guns, and 184 notebooks are missing from the bureau.

Officials believe 13 of the missing notebooks were stolen and that one of them contained classified information from two closed investigations, said Susan Dryden, deputy director at Justice's Office of Public Affairs.

'In order for law enforcement organizations to be effective, they must have the public's confidence in their ability to perform not only the most complex duties, but also the most basic responsibilities," Ashcroft said.

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