atf.jpegWICHITA, Kan. (AP) _ A federal judge in Kansas is expected to hear evidence on claims that a federal firearms sting in Wichita was racially motivated.


At least 43 of 51 people facing federal charges from the months-long operation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are black.

Lawyers for some of the defendants contend the operation targeted black males because the ATF's bogus pawn shop was located in a neighborhood with one of the city's highest concentrations of African-Americans.

U.S. District Judge Monti Belot scheduled an evidentiary hearing in the case Tuesday afternoon.

The government argues the claim of a racially motivated prosecution is baseless.