SEATTLE - KIRO 7 Eyewitness News has uncovered new evidence that expands the sex scandal involving Secret Service agents to another country.
Investigative reporter Chris Halsne has revealed more alleged misconduct by Secret Service agents -- including visits to strip clubs, rendezvous with prostitutes and excessive use of alcohol -- during a presidential trip to El Salvador last year.
Congressional investigators have expanded their hunt for possible security lapses by President Obama's Secret Service team after Halsne visited San Salvador this past week.
Multiple witnesses told Halsne that in the days leading up to the president's visit in March 2011, a "vanload" of Secret Service agents drank heavily at a local strip club and paid cash for sexual favors.
"They had a good time at the strip joint. They had a good time at the restaurant, bragging about being a part of the Secret Service crew of Obama. Most of them would brag about it -- 'We're Americans. We're the Secret Service of Obama' -- so people took like to them," a government subcontractor told Halsne.
The subcontractor who was with the group also said several members of the presidential advance team also met escorts back to their hotel rooms.
The Secret Service on Thursday responded with a short statement, saying "any information brought to our attention that can be assessed as credible will be followed up on in an appropriate manner."
Halsne is writing and editing the story that will air at 5 p.m. and said he will update viewers and web readers with the name of one of his sources, and an on-camera interview with another witness.
Halsne's report was the first thing that the White House spokesman was asked about in Thursday morning's news conference.
"I don't have anything more for you on that," said Jay Carney. "I would refer to you, as it related to the report you just mentioned, to the Secret Service. I simply don't have anything more for you on that from here."
Sen. Jon Kyl, Republican of Arizona, commented on the KIRO 7 report.
"Yes, it does concern me and that's why we need a thorough investigation, not just by the White House, not just by DHS but by Congress. That's part of our oversight responsibility and part of the obligation we owe the American people and I'm confident we'll get to the bottom of it."
Kyl said Congress did not get all the answers it needed in testimony by the Obama Administration.
At 5 p.m. on KIRO 7 Eyewitness News, Halsne will take viewers into the strip club in El Salvador and will reveal what witnesses told him about about what Secret Service agents allegedly did there.
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