Thursday, August 28, 2014

Military Surplus on the Black Market via Your Local Police

How much of the military equipment given to police departments in Defense and Homeland Security programs ends up on the black market? We can’t really find out because the programs don’t have a systematic way of following up to find out how the military equipment is being used. But we know from indictments, suspensions, and other enforcement actions that military hardware goes missing or is sold to anonymous buyers. Interviews with police departments suggest that Pentagon officials see the surplus programs as a way to get rid of unwanted equipment and the police departments involved as a distribution network through which the Pentagon can avoid accountability for the end users, though the Pentagon says that is not the intention. At Fusion: