Three US Secret Service agents tasked with protecting President Barack Obama in the Netherlands have been sent home after they were caught drinking.
One member of the Secret Service’s Counter Assault Team was found drunk and passed out in the hallway of an Amsterdam hotel. The hotel staff found the intoxicated agent in the hallway and reported the incident to the American Embassy. The other two agents were deemed complicit because they did not intervene and all three were sent home for “disciplinary reasons” and placed on administrative leave.
The Counter Assault Team’s role is to protect the president if he comes under attack, and to draw the attacker’s fire while the detail removes the president – which is pretty difficult to do if you’re unconscious on the floor of a hotel hallway.
But surely he wasn’t on duty when he began boozing it up? Doesn’t matter! Under rules adopted after the 2012 prostitution scandal in Colombia, agents are forbidden to drink alcohol 10 hours before an assignment. Since the Colombia incident, in which a bunch of Secret Service agents were dismissed after they hired prostitutes in Cartagena while preparing the way for Obama’s visit to the Summit of the Americas, the agency has been trying to repair its reputation and curb its perceived male-dominated hard partying culture.
So far, it’s not going that well…