Domestic drones aren’t new: the FBI has used them since 2006


The use of drones above American soil for the sake of law enforcement isn’t a new practice according to a recent audit of the practices of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Operating with almost no public notice, the FBI has spent more than $3 million to operate a fleet of small drone aircraft in domestic investigations, according to a report released Thursday by a federal watchdog agency.

The unmanned surveillance planes have helped FBI agents storm barricaded buildings, track criminal suspects and examine crime scenes since 2006, longer than previously known, according to the 35-page inspector general’s audit of drones used by the Justice Department.

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