Edgar Domenech

Who Is Carl Truscott and Why Did Bush’s DOJ Protect Him?

Actually, I know who Carl Truscott is–he’s the former head of Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms who resigned in 2006 under pressure for financial and other management abuses. But what I’m really interested in is why Bush’s DOJ went to great lengths to protect him.

Truscott’s Abuses

The former Deputy Director of BATF, Edgar Domenech, filed a whistleblower complaint on Monday asserting that he was demoted for reporting Truscott’s abuses. Domenech’s complaint details Truscott’s abuses, including:

  • Creating his own personal security detail
  • Dragging official photographers to all his events
  • Building an gym expansion in a building that would only be used for two additional years
  • Adding $4 million in design changes to the new BATF headquarters
  • Hiring an unqualified former co-worker to an Assistant Director position

Perhaps the best example of Truscott’s egomania is the way he’d invite his buddies over for lunch on the BATF’s dime:

On numerous occasions during Director Truscott’s.tenure, he has invited individuals representing private’ corporations and businesses with no apparent connection to ongoing contracts or activities with ATF to have lunch at government expense in his office or at nearby restaurants. Many of these individuals are former members of the Secret Service, or were referred to him by retired or current Secret service members. During the course of these meals, two female (GS-13 and GS-12) staff members are required to serve Director’ Truscott and his guests in the Director’s’ Office and have been specifically instructed to announce to the Director that "Lunch is served", causing undue humiliation to these professional staff employees and forcing them to engage in activity at work which is outside the scope of their duties. This is clearly indicative of a hostile work environment towards women. These employees have not advised Director Truscott that these unexpected service requests are degrading for fear of reprisal and intimidation. Initially, the lunches he hosted were sandwiches, however he recently demanded of staff to provide hot meals for his personal guests, which the staff must ayange, acquire and serve, causing additional strain and hours for ATF support staff to ensure the meals are served at appropriate temperatures. [my emphasis]

The complaint goes on to explain that Truscott’s financial mismanagement resulted in a net $20 million loss in BATF’s operating budget in FY 2006, leading to shortages of key equipment and capabilities.

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Emptywheel Twitterverse
emptywheel @joshleitzel Not a lot. One of the most interesting details is the way OLC memos point to national emergency rather than AUMF.
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bmaz My question at the outset was why GM concealment was not bankruptcy fraud; now that will be litigated. Good. http://t.co/CCL3wm2HYE
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bmaz @trevortimm Be terrified. Very terrified. Cause what you saw is, I think, all you get.
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bmaz @johnson_carrie According to my wife, "impossible jerk" characterizes lawyers in many locales @npratc
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bmaz @HoltenMark @mucha_carlos @ColMorrisDavis @KenDilanianLAT The constitutional framing is amazingly resilient, but resets are slow.
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bmaz @HoltenMark @mucha_carlos @ColMorrisDavis @KenDilanianLAT I represent far too many of the former and lament the latter. Things change though
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bmaz @HoltenMark @mucha_carlos @ColMorrisDavis @KenDilanianLAT Frankly, US can exert such influence, will not be effective foreign prosec either
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bmaz @HoltenMark @mucha_carlos @ColMorrisDavis @KenDilanianLAT Yes, in these considerations, that is exactly right. Not happening.
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bmaz @HoltenMark @mucha_carlos @ColMorrisDavis @KenDilanianLAT I wasn't being a smart ass, just honest as to situation.
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bmaz @mucha_carlos @ColMorrisDavis @KenDilanianLAT @HoltenMark Safe enough bet; no administration will want to open that can of worms.
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bmaz @mucha_carlos @ColMorrisDavis @KenDilanianLAT @HoltenMark ...ought to give pause in above regards too. If DOJ ever cared about these crimes.
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bmaz @mucha_carlos @ColMorrisDavis @KenDilanianLAT @HoltenMark Well, yes, and the wild expansion of extraterritorial jurisdiction in other cases
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