Witness Protection Program Lost 2 Terrorists
And there's more...
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted May 17, 2013 6:09 AM CDT
Michael Horowitz, the Justice Department's inspector general, goes before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee a day after he faulted the department for disregard of public safety in "Operation...   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – US officials lost track of a pair of "known or suspected terrorists"—the New York Times dubs them "former terrorists"—who were in the witness protection program. The good news: They are now "accounted for," per a Justice Department rep, who says they left both the US and the program years ago. The bad: In a review of the program, the department's inspector general's office found that the number of missing terrorists "may not be complete and may continue to evolve," CNN notes. And, actually, it found the DOJ "did not definitively know" how many known or suspected terrorists were even in the program to begin with.

And that may not be the worst of it: The DOJ wasn't sharing the new identities these witnesses were operating under to officials who build US watch lists, the Times notes. "Therefore it was possible for known or suspected terrorists to fly on commercial airplanes in or over the United States," the IG report says. The IG warned top Justice officials about the flight problem early last year, and it has been remedied. Fewer than 1% of those who have ever been in the witness protection program are terror-linked figures, and only two such people have joined in the past six years. But House Judiciary Committee head Robert Goodlatte plans a hearing on the "outrageous problem."

More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
Witness Protection Program Lost 2 Terrorists is...
11%
5%
1%
0%
48%
34%
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Comments
Showing 3 of 15 comments
HANKHILL
May 17, 2013 7:00 PM CDT
LOLOLOLO!!!!!!
JackNelsonSteward
May 17, 2013 3:21 PM CDT
Aww ... two "terrorists" here ... two "terrorists" there ... What's the PROBlem?? I mean ... what can two terrorists do, anyway ... huh?
watcher2013
May 17, 2013 12:30 PM CDT
This terrorist was at the Boston bombings, his name is Abdul Rahman Ali Al-Harbi, he is a 212 3B official file states he is armed and dangerous, this is the highest level a terrorist can be put on. He was arrested and it was reported on'' but because he is a Saudi National with wealthy family ' And they went to the white house spoke to the President, and he was released. They came from the diplomatic compound just outside of D.C. This is the same place where 2 women were being held in human traffic. The Saudi Embassy, The mansion for the Muslim Brotherhood. Wake up Amercia.