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This is truly one of the more bizarre stories I’ve seen in a while.

A shadowy security company, which seems to have no history and which no one seems to know much about, has secured a contract to take over a jail in the small town of Hardin, Montana.

Only the jail has no inmates and the company — American Police Force (you can see their oddly Balkan crest in the pic to the left) — won’t say what it is they plan to do with it. And then there’s the stuff that’s been freaking out the locals. As Justin Elliott puts it in our post, “residents of Hardin, MT, were alarmed last week when executives from the firm, American Police Force, showed up in the town, which does not have its own police department, with Mercedes SUVs bearing “City Of Hardin Police Department” decals.”The shadowiness of the whole enterprise has spawned a series of conspiracy theories on the left and the right. But it mainly seems like it’s some guys with a bunch of guns who’ve found some way to make a lot of money. They just won’t say what. At least not yet.

So where exactly is APF getting the money for the venture? The company’s spokesperson says they don’t plan to answer the question. And who’s the spokesperson? That would be Becky Shay, who used to cover APF as a reporter for the local paper until about a week ago.

Here’s the rest of our report.

Late Update: Wow, it gets even better with APF. If you want to overthrow a small third world country? Check. Have them tail your cheating spouse and catch him/her in flagrante? Yep, got you covered there too.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.
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