In response to a letter from members of Congress requesting the Department of Justice’s Office of Professional Responsibility investigate its own actions in its Operation Choke Point, the DOJ found no misconduct on its part.
Operation Choke Point was a DOJ operation in which the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the Consumer Financial Protection Board looked at how banks handled accounts with the gun industry and other targeted businesses deemed as “high risk” by the government.
As described by Justice Department officials, Operation Choke Point was “a strategy to attack Internet, telemarketing, mail, and other mass market fraud against consumers, by choking fraudsters’ access to the banking system.” The FDIC’s guidance labeled a number of legal and legitimate businesses “high risk,” such as firearms and ammunition sellers.
Last May, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee issued a report saying there was strong evidence to show the operation was unfairly targeting legal businesses by denying access to financial services.
Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-Mo.) led more than 30 other members of Congress to ask for the Justice Department internal probe from the DOJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility and from its inspector general of the findings in the report.
The OPR determined that Justice Department attorneys did not engage in professional misconduct or target industries in an improper way during the operation.
Luetkemeyer said he was “disappointed” but “not surprised” by the report in an interview with The Daily Signal multimedia news organization. He vows to continue pushing for his legislation to defund Operation Choke Point.
“This is not something that’s going to go away.” He tweeted @RepBlainePress.
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