Reason Magazine - Hit & Run > FBI to Congress: Murder, Wrongful Imprisonment May Be Necessary to Preserve Drug Investigations:
"Last week, a federal judge excoriated the FBI for not only hiding exculpatory evidence that would have exonerated four innocent men who served more than thirty years in prison, but for rewarding those who did the hiding and covering up with bonuses and promotions...
Well, we're just getting started. On July 19th, the House Judiciary Committee held hearings on the use and abuse of confidential drug informants. The testimony Assistant Director of the FBI Directorate of Intelligence Wayne M. Murphy gave at that hearing is truly astonishing.
...Murphy's being questioned by Rep. Dan Lundgren (R-Calif.) and Rep. William Delahunt (D-Mass.). The context: Lundgren and Delahunt have cited incidents in the past in which the FBI has covered up evidence that its confidential drug informants have committed violent crimes (including murder) in order to protect their identities, so that they could continue providing the bureau with information. They've cited other incidents, including the case above, in which the FBI has hidden exculpatory evidence, and allowed innocent people to go to prison. Lundgren and Delahunt want Murphy to assure them that the FBI has instituted policies to ensure that these sorts of incidents won't happen again--that murderers won't be protected and innocent people sent to prison in order to preserve drug investigations.
Remarkably, Murphy refuses to make such assurances.
...We're talking about the FBI concealing evidence of murder and other violent crimes, and of knowingly allowing innocent people to go to prison in order to not disrupt drug investigations. In other words, all of this is necessary, the FBI is saying, to keep people from getting high. And when confronted by the United States Congress, the FBI can't even say outright that this is categorically a bad idea, nor can it promise that it will institute a policy preventing these things from happening in the future."