IRS Raid Doesn’t Faze Business Owner, Who Reopens Business

IRS Raid Doesn't Faze Business Owner, Who Reopens Business
  • Republicans want the government’s “alphabet agencies” to have less power.
  • The ATF and IRS raided a gun shop in Montana.
  • Agents searched through financial records.
  • Lawmakers want answers.

( – Republicans across the country have argued for years that federal agencies have too much power. They are particularly concerned with the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), Department of Justice (DOJ), Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Conservatives have repeatedly accused the agencies of targeting law-abiding Americans and members of the GOP.

Recently, two of those agencies raided a Montana gun business and caused outrage. Lawmakers want answers about the operation. Meanwhile, the gun shop doesn’t appear to be fazed.

The Raid

On June 14, IRS and ATF agents stormed the Highwood Creek Outfitters in Great Falls, Montana. The agents spent about 10 hours in the store, allegedly looking through financial documents for the business. About 20 federal agents were in the place of business at the time of the operation.

Business owner Tom Van Hoose told reporters that he arrived at his store to open up at about 7:30 a.m., and that’s when the IRS Criminal Investigation (CI) Division arrived on the scene. He said they were dressed in full tactical gear and carrying semi-automatic rifles.

The agents took documents related to more than 12,000 firearms transactions that spanned 13 years and financial papers. Van Hoose claimed the records filled 20 boxes. He said he doesn’t understand why the IRS thinks a “small mom-and-pop gun shop makes enough money to justify 20 heavily armed agents.”

The ATF refused to comment on the incident, but the IRS confirmed it was investigating.

Lawmaker Seeks Answers

Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-MT) has now sent letters to the IRS and ATF demanding to know why the agencies raided the gun shop. Although the congressman doesn’t know why the agencies carried out the raid, he called it “outrageous.” He accused President Joe Biden’s administration of attempting to “intimidate firearms dealers and owners.” The congressman called it “another example” of federal agencies being weaponized.

Rosendale went on television and accused federal authorities of taking the documents in order to create a database with the records that were taken.

The congressman has asked the IRS and ATF to give him more information about the raids. Specifically, he wants to know why the IRS took documents related to firearms purchases, saying none of the records included financial information.

The agencies have not responded.

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