A new report by Human Rights Watch accuses the FBI of using sting operations to entrap informants, creating terrorists out of law-abiding individuals and targeting American Muslims in the agency’s counterterrorism investigations.
The Justice Department and the FBI have targeted American Muslims in “abusive” counterterrorism sting operations based on religious and ethnic identity, according to the new report from HRW and Columbia University Law School’s Human Rights Institute. The study found that many of the over 500 terrorism-related cases since the War on Terror began in 2001 have alienated the communities that the government should rely on to prevent terrorism.
“This is a number that sounds really big, and it makes it sound like Americans are being kept safe from terrorism attacks,” Andrea Prasow, deputy Washington director for HRW, said in a video released with the report. “But we found that in a lot of these cases, people were prosecuted who never would have committed a terrorist attack in the first place, if it weren’t for the involvement of the FBI.”