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ATF Says Agents Were Not Promoted

WASHINGTON, Aug. 19 (UPI) — The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms denies a published report that three of its agents involved in a controversial weapons operation were promoted.

The agency said Wednesday the agents were transferred to Washington from Phoenix with no change in rank and pay grade.

“They did not receive salary or grade increases, nor did they assume positions with greater responsibility,” an ATF statement said.

The three agents — William G. McMahon, William D. Newell and David Voth — were supervisors in Operation Fast and Furious, an effort to track guns obtained in the United States by straw purchasers to identify the traffickers sending them to Mexican drug cartels. But many of the weapons simply disappeared.

A Los Angeles Times report Tuesday that the agents had been promoted led to questions from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which is investigating the operation.

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