Was 'anti-aircraft' gun seized in Mexico a big hoax?

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Experts suggest Mexican weapons-bust press conference may have been staged event

Mexican federal police commander Gen. Rodolfo Cruz Lopez described a weapon seized last month from one of the nation's deadly "drug cartels" as a .50 caliber anti-aircraft gun that fires 6-inch armor-piercing bullets at the rate of 800 rounds per minute.

The mainstream media coverage on both sides of the border trumpeted the capture of this Rambo-style machine gun as evidence of the increasing danger the drug-trafficking organizations pose to civil society.

A report on the seized "anti-aircraft" weapon by the Associated Press noted that "assailants have fired on government aircraft performing anti-drug missions in Mexico in the past, but apparently never with the caliber of weapon found Monday [April 13 in northern Mexico]."

But there is just one problem with this narrative. According to U.S. law enforcers, specifically the ATF, the captured weapon is not what it appears to be, or at least what it was purported to be by the Mexican police commander.

In fact, according to Bill Newell, special agent in charge of ATF in Arizona and New Mexico, the so-called 800 rpm "anti-aircraft gun" isn't a machine gun at all, but rather a WWII-era semi-automatic replica of a Browning machine gun made by a U

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This page contains a single entry by writch published on May 13, 2009 4:46 AM.

Oops (*big*) OOPS here was the previous entry in this blog.

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