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Hawkins, Greene, Hamblen and Hancock drug task force criticized by state comptroller

Lance Coleman • Jul 12, 2012 at 4:33 AM

Three East Tennessee drug task forces are cited in a new state report for, among other things, accounting deficiencies, using federal Recovery Act money inappropriately and misusing a fuel card.

According to the annual report from State Comptroller Justin P. Wilson, the 3rd Judicial District group, which consists of Greene, Hamblen, Hancock and Hawkins counties, failed to keep proper track of monies, failed to properly record and manage seized property and failed to maintain adequate documentation to support some confidential informant expenditures. Such task forces conduct law enforcement operations to stop illegal drug activity.

In addition, state auditors found the task force didn't follow proper purchasing procedures and kept inadequate equipment inventory control records.

The auditors noted that while their focus was supposed to be on the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2011, based on weaknesses found during their review along with difficulties encountered in obtaining records, they had to extend their review of 3rd District task force operations through to March 5.

Read the expanded version of this report at the Knoxville News Sentinel Web site.

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