The day the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the D.C. gun ban, leading gun control advocates dialed into a nationwide conference call to coordinate how the movement should frame its reaction to the media. Listening in was Mary McFate, a longtime board member of a Pennsylvania gun safety group. Although McFate had been a familiar face in gun safety circles for more than a decade, the other activists on the line were unaware that she once had a career as a corporate spy infiltrating activist groups, reports the Washington Post.
Now, three gun safety groups have expelled McFate, 62, on suspicion that she was actually a longtime informant for the National Rifle Association or other gun rights organizations. McFate and the NRA are not commenting, but Mother Jones magazine revealed in July that McFate was once known as Mary Lou Sapone, whose career as a corporate spy is well documented and undisputed. A civil court deposition includes testimony that McFate had the NRA as a client as far back as 1999. A year later, McFate was a volunteer coordinator of the gun control movement’s Million Mom March.