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Holder Defends Terrorism Stings To Muslim Group

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Holder acknowledged that the relationship with Muslim-Americans and law enforcement has become strained, even as the Justice Department pursues more hate crimes charges against those acting out against Muslims.

"We know that we have more work to do to strengthen the relationship between law enforcement and those in Muslim and Arab-American communities," he said, according to Reuters.

In the past month, FBI sting operations have netted a Portland, Ore., man -- after they supplied him with a fake bomb and helped him plan an attack on a Christmas tree lighting ceremony -- and a Baltimore man -- after undercover agents suggested he attack a military recruiting center there. In both cases, the FBI says they offered the men violent and nonviolent strategies to accomplish their goal of helping Islam, and in each case, they chose violent means.

Holder has repeatedly defended the stings amid criticism that they amount to entrapment. "I'm comfortable with the way that we've been conducting ourselves with regard to these investigations," he told TPM last week.