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FBI Director Admits Drones Are Used For Domestic Surveillance


The FBI uses drones for domestic surveillance purposes, the head of the agency told Congress early Wednesday.

Robert Mueller, the director of the Federal Bureau of  Investigation, confirmed to lawmakers that the FBI owns several  unmanned aerial vehicles, but has not adopted any strict policies  or guidelines yet to govern the use of the controversial  aircraft.   “Does the FBI use drones for surveillance on US soil?”   Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) asked Mr Mueller during an oversight  hearing on Capitol Hill Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary  Committee.

“Yes,” Mueller responded bluntly, adding that the FBI’s  operation of drones is “very seldom.”
Asked by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-California) to elaborate,  Mueller added, “It’s very seldom used and generally used in a  particular incident where you need the capability.” Earlier  in the morning, however, Mueller said that the agency was only  now working to establish set rules for the drone program.
Mueller began answering questions just after 10 a.m. EDT. He  briefly touched on the recently exposed NSA surveillance program  that has marred the reputation of the United States intelligence  community. Mueller said 22 agents have access to a vast  surveillance database, including 20 analysts and two overseers.

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