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US Attorney General: Sting Operations Are Essential

Attorney General Eric Holder speaks at the Muslim Advocates annual dinner in Millbrae, Calif., 10 Dec 2010

The U.S. attorney general has defended the use of sting operations against suspected terrorists during a speech to a Muslim rights group.

Eric Holder told Muslim Advocates that such operations are essential to identifying and preventing terror attacks on all citizens.

The California-based group had expressed concern that Justice Department tactics bordered on entrapment in some cases.

During his speech, Holder defended a case last month, in which a Somali-born man in Oregon was arrested after trying to detonate what he thought was a bomb near Christmas tree lighting. Undercover FBI agents provided the suspect with the fake bomb.

The director of the Muslim Advocates says it still has concerns and that fairness should be the cornerstone of each probe.