Mon, May 10, 2004
FAA Supervisor Destroyed 9/11 Interview With Controllers
It was recorded as a tool for FBI
investigators tracking down the 9/11 plot -- an audio tape
featuring six of the ATC workers who handled the hijacked flights
that plowed into the World Trade Center towers, the Pentagon and a
field in Pennsylvania.
But the tape was never turned over to the FBI and an FAA manager
later destroyed it.
A report by the Department of Transportation's Inspector General
says an FAA manager decided to debrief the six controllers on tape
just hours after the disastrous attacks. But a different manager
later crushed the tape in his hand, cut it up into tiny pieces and
spread the refuse over several trash cans.
The Washington Post reports the DOT IG investigation was
originally set to determine whether the FAA had fully cooperated
with the 9/11 Commission's investigation into the terror
"The destruction of evidence in the Government's possession, in
this case an audiotape -- particularly during times of national
crisis -- has the effect of fostering an appearance that
information is being withheld from the public," the report
The FAA is in damage control mode.
The Post identified the manager who destroyed the tape as Kevin
Delaney. The paper said he's been suspended for 20-days without pay
and is appealing the decision.
The FAA also issued a statement, saying it's turned over
thousands of documents to the 9/11 commission. As for the tape in
question, "We believe the audiotape in question appears to be
consistent with written statements and other materials provided to
FBI investigators and would not have added in any significant way
to the information contained in what has already been provided to
investigators and members of the 9/11 commission," said FAA
spokesman Greg Martin.
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