DEA payments to Amtrak employee being investigated

WASHINGTON (AP) — The office of the Justice Department inspector general says it is investigating alleged payments by Drug Enforcement Administration personnel to an Amtrak employee.

The announcement by Jay Lerner, a spokesman for the investigator's office, follows the disclosure by Amtrak's inspector general that DEA paid an Amtrak secretary $854,460 over nearly 20 years to obtain confidential information about train passengers that the drug-fighting agency could have lawfully obtained for free through a law enforcement network.

The Amtrak IG's report says that under a joint drug enforcement task force that includes the DEA and Amtrak's own police agency, the task force can obtain Amtrak confidential passenger reservation information at no cost.

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