Tear gas canisters fired at migrants at the Tijuana border this weekend reportedly were manufactured by Safariland, LLC, the same firm that provided similar munitions used in other recent controversial incidents.
Safariland is a defense supplies vendor whose name reportedly was printed on canisters of smoke or tear gas used on migrants in Mexico, including women and children, by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) over the weekend. Safariland munitions reportedly were also linked to the 2014 police crackdown in Ferguson, Missouri, and allegedly used at the Standing Rock showdown over water rights and the Dakota Access Pipeline in 2016.
In a lawsuit stemming from the Standing Rock clashes, activist Sophia Wilansky alleged that her left hand was nearly severed and her left arm was disfigured and disabled by a Defense Technology flashbang grenade. Defense Technology is a Safariland brand.
The California and Florida-based company is owned by investor Warren Kanders, who also serves as its CEO. Kanders and his wife are affiliated with prestigious institutions including the Aspen Institute and the Whitney Museum of American Art. They have contributed large sums of money to the Republican Party, but more recently became active backers of Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), according to FEC data reviewed by TYT.
In September, TYT reported that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) had contracted to use a Safariland product called the “TranZport Hood.” The Trump administration authorized the use of the hood in September of 2017 in an internal document obtained by TYT through a Freedom of Information request.