During a four-month sting operation, capped with a late-June sweep timed to coincide with a Meth Summit, Oregon drug-law enforcers hired a career informant with a criminal record and a well-documented history of entrapment, the McMinnville (Or.) News-Register reports. Repeating a pitch polished over 32 years of paid informant work in Oregon, Washington, and California, Marc “The Mole” Caven, 51, dangled hope of high-paying construction and landscaping work. Those tactics stirred such controversy in the early 1980s that even the state attorney general felt moved to condemn them. The script called for Caven to suggest it would help applicants’ prospects if they could hook him up with a bit of methamphetamine or marijuana. At least 46 of them succumbed to the pitch and were arrested.
The suspects include a 22-year-old youth who finally came up with less than half an ounce of marijuana after reportedly being hounded by Caven on a daily basis for weeks. Defense lawyers have protested that the recent arrests constituted entrapment. The newspaper says the entrapment issue led to dropping cases made by Caven in three counties in 1982.