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Feds paid AMTRAK worker to spy on passengers

Published: January 8, 2016
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The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration inappropriately paid an Amtrak employee more than $850,000 over 20 years to provide information on passengers who may be smuggling drugs, according a report from the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General.

The OIG also released a separate report saying the DEA arranged to pay a government airport screener to act as a confidential source. The screener, however, never provided information of any value to the DEA.

But the OIG’s problem with these arrangements wasn’t that transportation officials were reporting people’s actions to the DEA. Instead, OIG said it made no sense for the DEA to pay these people for information, as they are already required by law to offer it up for free.

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