WASHINGTON - The former special agent in charge of the Phoenix ATF division is clarifying statements he made about the controversial Fast and Furious case during testimony in front of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in July.
In a letter addressed to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Bill Newell’s attorney, Paul Pelletier, enclosed a 12 page written statement, intended to supplement Newell’s previous testimony in Washington, DC.
“I realize I could have given clearer, more complete and more direct responses to some questions,” Newell wrote in the statement.
“It was not my intention to give answers that lacked the clarity everyone on the panel deserved from a federal law enforcement agent in my position. It is not an excuse but a reality that the pressure I have been under over the last several months has been nothing like I have ever experienced; this inquiry and the way it was been handled has taken a physical toll on my family, me and the dedicated men and women who continue to pursue the goals of this investigation.”
During the July testimony, Newell frequently supplied vague, indirect answers to questions from congressmen and women, some of whom referred to his statements as “frustrating.”
In July, Pelletier told ABC15 Newell was nervous.
“I think Bill’s not a great public speaker,” he said. “I think it’s a hard thing – in a couple of sentences - to explain how this investigation went and how it was run.”
The 12 page statement details more specific information about the controversial Fast and Furious case, including information about how and when it started and why it continued to operate in the same manner despite a lack of surveillance and seizures of dangerous weapons.
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