The Office of Inspector General for the Department of Justice released the findings Tuesday of an investigation that found a former senior FBI official violated agency policy by having numerous unauthorized contacts with the media.
The investigation found that the official, who has not been named and has since retired from the agency, “had numerous contacts with members of the media between January and November 2016 in violation of FBI policy,” as well as accepted unauthorized gifts from media members, according to the report.
The senior official had unofficial contact with media officials during the opening months of the Trump-Russia investigation. That investigation by the FBI started in the months leading up to and after the Nov. 2016 presidential election. However, the report does not mention that this official was part of the investigation. Read More
“I have grave concern that the court was defrauded intentionally … There was some type of agenda, an inappropriate agenda beyond an objective intelligence or criminal investigation,” said Kevin Brock, a retired FBI assistant director for Intelligence who helped implement most of the intelligence and informant rules the FBI uses today.
“I struggle to find any other explanation,” Brock told the John Solomon Reports podcast. “Any other explanation just doesn’t pass the smell test. I mean, the glaring — the Steele dossier, for an experienced counterintelligence agent in the field, was blinking red lights Russian disinformation campaign, and yet you’re going to have the highest levels of the FBI executives use that to create an investigation?” Read More
For the past year, defenders of the FBI have consistently downplayed the significance of an FBI staff lawyer falsifying evidence in the government’s investigation into Donald Trump’s relationship with Russia. They argue Kevin Clinesmith’s crime of altering a CIA document to obscure the fact that former Trump campaign aide Carter Page worked for U.S., not Russian, intelligence was a rare lapse in judgment by an overworked bureaucrat. It was not, his apologists say, part of any broader conspiracy to conceal exculpatory information from surveillance court judges, who never learned of Page’s history with the CIA before approving FBI warrants to wiretap him as a suspected Russian agent.
But such explanations are challenged by new revelations from court papers filed in the case, which some civil libertarians call the most egregious violation and abuse of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) since it was enacted more than 40 years ago. Read More
Rep. Devin Nunes, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, said Sunday he plans to make new criminal referrals to the Justice Department following the release of internal FBI messages from the account of Peter Strzok, the top FBI investigator on Crossfire Hurricane.
In an interview on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures,” Nunes said the messages, which the Justice Department and FBI declassified earlier this month, should have been provided to Congress years ago when Republicans began investigating whether the FBI abused the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) in order to surveil Trump campaign aide Carter Page. Read More
John Durham, the U.S. attorney investigating aspects of the Trump-Russia probe, has sought notes that former British spy Christopher Steele took during his interviews in 2016 with the FBI regarding a since-debunked dossier he penned that accused the Trump campaign of colluding with the Russian government.
An FBI agent who took part in one of the interviews with Steele told Justice Department investigators that the ex-spy “clearly … wasn’t truthful” regarding his contacts with members of the media. Read More
John Ratcliffe, the Director of National Intelligence, urged U.S. Attorney John Durham on Sunday to release an interim report on his investigation into the origins of the Trump-Russia probe, saying that the American public should have record of the investigation in case the Biden administration shuts it down.
“I think the American people should know what’s happening in a two-year investigation into this and I hope that that report will be forthcoming,” Ratcliffe said in an interview on Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures.” Read More
A near-majority of voters say FBI agents and leaders should be prosecuted for their role in the Russian collusion conspiracy theory, according to a new Just the News Daily Poll with Scott Rasmussen.
Among the voters, 46 percent said FBI officials should be criminally charged over the scandal, while only half that number — 23 percent — said they shouldn’t. Read More
The U.S. attorney investigating the origins of the Trump-Russia probe is seeking grand jury testimony from a group of computer scientists behind a since-debunked allegation that Donald Trump’s real estate company had covert computer contacts with a Russian bank, according to a report.
The New Yorker reports that John Durham, the U.S. attorney for Connecticut, has contacted the scientists in recent weeks seeking their testimony. Read More
Republican South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham provided a slew of updates about the Senate Judiciary Committee’s investigation into Crossfire Hurricane on Sunday and teased “damning” revelations that he said will soon be made public.
“There’s a day of reckoning,” Graham said in an interview on Fox News “Sunday Morning Futures.” Read More
The FBI opened a counterintelligence investigation on the primary source for dossier author Christopher Steele, and considered obtaining a warrant to wiretap him in 2010, according to a document released Thursday.
The FBI was also aware of the information about the source, identified elsewhere as Igor Danchenko, by December 2016, according to the document. Read More
Former FBI official Peter Strzok defended the bureau’s surveillance of former Trump aide Carter Page in an interview aired Sunday, attributing failures found in a government watchdog report to agents being “overworked.”
“I don’t think at all that it’s anything improper. You get people who are overworked, who make mistakes — and don’t get me wrong, inexcusable mistakes,” Strzok said in an interview with “CBS Sunday Morning.” Read More
John Ratcliffe, the director of national intelligence, has been coordinating with U.S. Attorney John Durham and plans to soon declassify more documents related to the Trump-Russia probe, he said Sunday.
“The question now is did the FBI have a proper predicate to begin a counterintelligence investigation at all, and that’s the issue that John Durham is looking at, and also the issue that I’m continuing to look at,” Ratcliffe said in an interview on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures.” Read More
By his own admission, ex-CIA Director John Brennan chafed at being questioned earlier this month by federal prosecutor John Durham about the Obama administration’s intelligence assessment that Russia’s meddling in 2016 election was designed to help Donald Trump.
Brennan “questioned why the analytic tradecraft and the findings of the ICA are being scrutinized by the Department of Justice, especially since they have been validated by the Mueller Report and the bipartisan Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Review,” a statement issued by his spokesman Nick Shapiro said. Read More
Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson, the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, subpoenaed FBI Director Christopher Wray last week for all documents related to Crossfire Hurricane, the investigation of the Trump campaign’s possible ties to Russia.
The subpoena, issued on Aug. 6, calls for Wray to produce all of the documents related to the probe by Aug. 20.
Johnson is also demanding that Wray hand over all records that the FBI provided the Justice Department’s office of the inspector general for its scathing report on Crossfire Hurricane. Read More
Sen. Lindsey Graham on Sunday released an FBI memo from 2018 that he says shows investigators lied to the Senate about statements that the primary source for the Steele dossier told the FBI regarding the salacious document.
“This document clearly shows that the FBI was continuing to mislead regarding the reliability of the Steele dossier,” Graham said in a statement announcing the release of an eight-page briefing document that the FBI provided to the Senate Intelligence Committee in February 2018. Read More
Lin Wood, the attorney representing a Kentucky teenager in a number of defamation lawsuits against major media outlets, announced a settlement Friday with the Washington Post. The terms of the agreement between the family of Nicholas Sandmann – the Covington Catholic High School student accused of disrespecting a “native elder” while wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat during the January 2019 March for Life – remain secret.
Wood and Sandmann settled a similar lawsuit against CNN earlier this year. Cases still are pending against NBC News, ABC News, CBS News, the New York Times, Rolling Stone, and Gannett. Read More
Sen. Lindsey Graham on Sunday teased the release of evidence showing that the FBI “lied their ass off” to Congress regarding the reliability of the Steele dossier, which the bureau used as part of its investigation of the Trump campaign.
“I will tell you next week what I found,” the South Carolina Republican said in an interview on “Fox Sunday Futures” with Maria Bartiromo. Read More
Sen. Lindsey Graham said Sunday he will approve Democrats’ request to invite Robert Mueller to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee after the former special counsel published an op-ed in The Washington Post criticizing President Donald Trump’s decision to commute the prison sentence for Roger Stone. Read More
A federal appeals court on Wednesday ordered the dismissal of the criminal case against President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia said in a 2-1 ruling that the Justice Department’s decision to abandon the case against Flynn settles the matter, even though Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to prosecutors in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. Read More
The multiple investigations of the U.S. government’s intelligence-gathering activities against the Trump campaign have typically focused on the actions of the same small group of former officials: James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, John Brennan, James Clapper and a few others.
But just as significant to the efforts to get to the bottom of the government’s Trump-related surveillance are a handful of current and former FBI and Justice Department employees whose names are not as well known to the public. Read More
Sen. Lindsey Graham said Sunday that he has been denied access to interview an FBI agent and FBI analyst who met with a key source for the Steele dossier who disavowed the salacious document.
Graham has sought interviews with the FBI case agent and supervisory intelligence analyst to discuss their interview in January 2017 with the primary source for Christopher Steele, the former British spy who investigated the Trump campaign for Democrats. Read More
A federal judge on Monday defended his decision not to quickly approve the Justice Department’s request to dismiss its own criminal case against former Trump administration national security adviser Michael Flynn, saying that the department’s reversal was unusual and he wanted to consider the request carefully before ruling on it. Read More
The FBI lawyer who signed a surveillance order against former Trump aide Carter Page that the Justice Department has deemed invalid submitted his resignation on Friday, the FBI said.
Dana Boente, the FBI general counsel, has recently come under scrutiny over his role in the various investigations against former Trump advisers, including Michael Flynn and Carter Page. Read More
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff on Friday called for transparency in the release of a transcript of former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s phone calls in late December 2016 with a Russian ambassador.
“We need to ensure a transparent and complete public record free of political manipulation,” Schiff wrote in a letter to Richard Grenell, the acting director of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI). Read More
Let’s talk about John Brennan a bit. You remember John Brennan. He was Barack Obama’s director of the CIA. Once upon a time, he was an enthusiast for Gus Hall, the Communist candidate for president, for whom he voted in 1976. I can’t think of any better background for the head of the country’s premier intelligence service under Obama. In 2014, having put childish things behind him as St. Paul advised, Brennan spied on the Senate Intelligence Committee. He denied it indignantly. “Nothing could be further from the truth. We wouldn’t do that. That’s just beyond the scope of reason in terms of what we’d do.” Read More
Former CIA Director John Brennan said Friday that he has yet to be interviewed by the federal prosecutor investigating the origins of the Trump-Russia probe, but that he is willing to do so and has “nothing to hide.”
“I feel very good that my tenure at CIA and my time at the White House during the Obama administration was not — that was not engaged in any type of wrongdoing or activities that caused me to worry about what this investigation may uncover,” Brennan said in an interview with MSNBC’s Chris Hayes. Read More
Richard Grenell, the acting director of national intelligence, visited the Justice Department last week seeking to declassify documents related to Obama administration officials’ unmasking of Michael Flynn in transcripts of phone calls he had with Russia’s ambassador, ABC News is reporting.
Grenell is asking the Justice Department to declassify a list of names of officials involved in the unmasking process, a senior intelligence official told ABC.
Unmasking refers to a process where top U.S. government officials can request information on American citizens picked up during electronic surveillance of foreigners. Flynn was unveiled as taking part in a Dec. 29, 2016 phone with Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador. Read More
Rep. Adam Schiff said Wednesday he will soon release dozens of transcripts from the House Intelligence Committee’s Russia investigation, ending a lengthy partisan standoff over publication of the documents. Read More
by Chuck Ross It wasn’t long into his conversation with George Papadopoulos at a prestigious social club in London weeks before the 2016 election that FBI confidential informant Stefan Halper mentioned his links to several retired Russian spies. “I have a lot of friends in Russia,” Halper told Papadopoulos… Read More
McClatchy news service says it is reviewing two reports published in 2018 that claimed to validate a key part of the infamous Steele dossier after declassified information showed that Russian operatives may have fed disinformation to dossier author Christopher Steele.
“We are taking a close look at this new information and will update or correct our story based on its merits. Until then, we continue to stand by our reporting,” McClatchy said in a statement to The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple. Read More
by Chuck Ross Dossier author Christopher Steele will not cooperate with U.S. Attorney John Durham’s investigation into the origins of the Trump-Russia probe, telling an audience at Oxford University that he believes U.S. investigators have acted in “bad faith.” Steele, a former British spy, said at the Oxford event… Read More
The lead juror at Roger Stone’s trial said in a written questionnaire for prospective jurors that she was “not sure” whether she posted online about the Russia investigation or Stone, and that she “may have shared an article” on social media on the topics, according to a portion of the document reviewed by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
But Tomeka Hart’s Twitter feed shows that she indeed posted multiple times about the Russia probe and at least once about Stone, who was sentenced on Thursday to 40 months in prison in a case that stemmed from the special counsel’s investigation. Read More
An FBI agent faulted for some of the most significant problems laid out in the Justice Department’s inspector general report on FISA abuse against a Trump campaign associate has been identified.
The New York Times, citing people familiar with the FBI’s Russia probe, identified Stephen A. Somma, a counterintelligence investigator who works out of the bureau’s New York field office, as “Case Agent 1” from the inspector general’s (IG) report. Read More
Roger Stone’s attorneys filed a motion Friday to disqualify Judge Amy Berman Jackson from future proceedings in his case because she said during his sentencing hearing Thursday that the Trump confidante’s jury served with “integrity.”
Jackson, who sentenced Stone to 40 months in prison, will soon decide whether to grant Stone’s request for a retrial. The GOP operative alleges that jury foreperson Tomeka Hart was biased against him and submitted false statements during the jury selection process about her opinions regarding President Donald Trump. Read More
Andrew McCabe’s denials to his FBI colleagues that he was behind a media leak related to the Clinton Foundation investigation in October 2016 cast suspicion on his loyal aide, Lisa Page, former FBI Director James Comey said in an interview with the Justice Department’s inspector general. Read More
Who in the federal government then continued Clinton’s efforts after the 2016 election to disrupt and indeed attempt to destroy the Trump transition and presidency? Read More
Federal prosecutors in Washington, D.C., on Monday recommended that longtime Trump confidant Roger Stone serve up to nine years in prison following his conviction on false statements and witness tampering charges related to the Russia investigation. Read More
In an historic vote Wednesday, the U.S. Senate voted to acquit President Trump on both Articles of Impeachment.
Falling far short of the necessary two-thirds majority needed to expel a sitting president, Trump was acquitted 52-48 on the House of Representatives’ Article One charge of “abuse of power.” The President was acquitted on the Article Two charge of “Obstruction of Congress” by a vote of 53-47. Read More
The impeachment farce will likely conclude this week – and not a minute too soon. For over a week now, my father would call me multiple times a day, in a near panic. He would watch Adam Schiff and his merry gang of Democratic goblins throw out accusation after accusation, and he was certain that the end was near. Read More
House Democrats prosecuting the impeachment case against President Donald Trump and his defense team offered forceful closing arguments Monday at his Senate trial, even as his acquittal remains all but certain.
Congressman Adam Schiff, the lead House manager prosecuting Trump on two articles of impeachment, passionately implored the 100 members of the Senate acting as jurors, “We have proven Donald Trump guilty. Now, do impartial justice and convict him.” Read More
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham said Sunday that he and other Republicans will begin calling witnesses within weeks for hearings related to Hunter Biden’s work in Ukraine, as well as the FBI’s surveillance of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. Read More
With the establishment media in a disgusting bromance with Democrat impeachment manager Rep. Adam Schiff, we thought we’d wrap-up the first few days of the impeachment farce – we mean Senate trial – by collecting as many of Schiff’s lies as we could find into one well-sourced document. Read More
America’s eyes turned to Iraq and Iran over the past few days as President Trump made a bold decision to take out one of the world’s most dangerous terrorists and faced down the Iranian government and their proxies at MSNBC, CNN, the Democratic Congress and Hollywood. Read More
by Adam Mill One can imagine the unspoken question hanging in the darkness during the January 2017 ride back to the airport. A small gaggle1 of FBI agents had just concluded their long-overdue interview with Christopher Steele’s primary sub-source. The silence must have been deafening. Steele had tried to conceal2 his… Read More
Another key takeaway from Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’ report on Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) abuses by the Justice Department, FBI and intelligence agencies against President Donald Trump and his campaign in 2016 is that no attempt was made to corroborate allegations by former British spy Christopher Steele by interviewing his sources until after the allegations were published by Buzzfeed on Jan. 10, 2017 and subsequently discredited. Read More
Former top FBI lawyer Jim Baker: “Sloppiness is completely unacceptable. That is not the way you operate in front of a federal court. I don’t know what word you want to use, it’s terrible, it’s unacceptable, it shouldn’t happen. That is not the way we should be filing matters in front of a federal court” Read More
A federal judge on Monday scheduled Michael Flynn to face sentencing on Jan. 28 in a case stemming from the special counsel’s probe, while rejecting the former national security adviser’s allegations that he was entrapped by the FBI and forced into entering a plea deal. Read More
Former Rep. Trey Gowdy said Sunday that it is “too damn late” for James Comey to admit he was wrong about FBI abuse of the FISA process, as the former FBI director did in an interview on Fox News earlier in the day. Read More
James Comey said Sunday that he was “wrong” about the FBI’s handling of surveillance warrants against Carter Page, who the former FBI director acknowledged was “treated unfairly” by having his name leaked to the press as a suspected Russian agent. Read More
Rep. Adam Schiff admitted Sunday that the FBI committed “serious abuses” of the foreign surveillance court process in order to spy on Carter Page, though the California Democrat stopped short of acknowledging he was wrong to defend the bureau and in his promotion of the infamous Steele dossier. Read More