Sept. 23, 2022
Best of the Week — First Winner
Informant raped during unmonitored drug sting; AP finds little regulation of common police tactic
Investigative reporter Jim Mustian told the exclusive story of a female informant raped twice in an undercover drug sting after her law enforcement handlers left her alone and unmonitored — a case that revealed the perils such informants can face while seeking to “work off” criminal charges in often secretive arrangements.
Mustian spent weeks interviewing sources and obtaining confidential documents after receiving a tip about the incident which took place in central Louisiana early last year. His reporting showed authorities’ apparent disregard for the safety of the informant, while experts told him that such drug stings are conducted countless times a day across the country, but they are notoriously unregulated.
Mustian’s story was among the most-read stories of the week on AP News and earned prominent play by AP members and customers.
For deep reporting that exposed a horrific case and took a hard look at a common police practice, Mustian earns AP’s Best of the Week — First Winner honors.