Feds tell Ariz. sheriff to retrieve military goods

September 14, 2012 - 9:34 AM

PHOENIX (AP) — Federal officials have ordered the Pinal County Sheriff's Office in Arizona to retrieve military surplus goods it loaned to non-police organizations in violation of distribution rules.

The Arizona Republic reports (http://bit.ly/RR0EYN ) the Defense Logistics Agency told Sheriff Paul Babeu's (bab-YOO's) office to recover trucks and other loaned equipment after the newspaper's May report detailed the practice.

The sheriff's office got a brief reprieve but is collecting trucks and other equipment from fire and ambulance stations.

A Defense Logistics Agency spokeswoman says volunteer fire departments and private ambulance companies should not have received the equipment.

The Sheriff's Office has requisitioned more than $7 million worth of free merchandise through the Defense Department program since August 2010. Police organizations can obtain excess military goods only for immediate law-enforcement purposes.

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Information from: The Arizona Republic, http://www.azcentral.com