House Intelligence Committee to Begin DOJ and FBI Corruption Probe Interviews This Month

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., right, standing with Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., left, speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
AP Photo/Susan Walsh

The Justice Department has agreed to make documents and eight senior officials available to the House Intelligence Committee for interviews this month, according to the committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA).

The requested information and interviews are related to the committee’s side probe of Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation officials’ corruption and misuse of the secret surveillance court.

The agreement came after Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray visited House Speaker Paul Ryan last Wednesday, and Rosenstein spoke to Nunes (R-CA) via phone Wednesday evening.

According to a January 4 letter by Nunes to Rosenstein, memorializing their conversation, the officials to be interviewed are:

  • Former DOJ Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, who met with Trump dossier author Christopher Steele during the election and Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson after the election. He was demoted shortly before the meetings were reported by Fox News, and his wife worked for Fusion GPS;
  • FBI Supervisory Special Agent Peter Strzok — who was in charge of the day-to-day investigation into Clinton’s private email server, watered down language in a statement that effectively exonerated Clinton from any wrongdoing, signed off on the launch of the FBI’s initial Russia probe, joined Special Counsel Mueller’s team. He was demoted after thousands of text messages were discovered by the DOJ Inspector General between him and another FBI lawyer, his mistress Lisa Page, including some text messages suggesting an “insurance plan” to stop Trump’s election discussed in the deputy FBI director’s office;
  • Former FBI General Counsel James Baker — the FBI’s top lawyer who was close to now fired-FBI Director James Comey. He is being reassigned after being caught up in a leak probe;
  • FBI Attorney Lisa Page, who, along with Strzok, worked on the FBI’s investigation of Clinton’s email server and on the Mueller team until leaving before the text messages between her and Strzok were discovered. She had worked directly for FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe but reportedly does not do much work for McCabe;
  • FBI Attorney Sally Moyer;
  • FBI Assistant Director Greg Brower — the FBI’s top liaison with Congress for the Russian meddling probes and a former Nevada legislator;
  • FBI Assistant Director Bill Priestap — the assistant director of the Counterintelligence Division at FBI headquarters in Washington, DC, who reportedly would have had to approve the documents used to get a surveillance warrant on Trump campaign members, paying Trump dossier Christopher Steele. He accompanied former acting Attorney General Sally Yates to the White House to warn General Counsel Don McGahn that former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn could be compromised by the Russians;
  • FBI Special Agent James Rybicki — who is FBI chief of staff and as one of Comey’s two top aides, was aware that the former FBI director had drafted a statement outlining his decision not to bring charges against Clinton before interviewing her.

In addition, Nunes wrote, the DOJ is conducting “another search” through 9,500 text messages between Strzok and his mistress, Page, and relevant messages will be provided to the committee. The committee requests these messages by no later than the close of business on Thursday, January 11, 2018.

Nunes said the DOJ is researching records related to the details of an April 2017 meeting between Weissman, who is now the senior attorney for Special Counsel Robert Mueller, and the media. The DOJ will reportedly provide those records also by the close of business next Thursday.

Weissman joined Mueller’s team in June. Previously, he headed the FBI’s criminal fraud unit. Conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch obtained an email showing that he had praised Yates in January 2017 for standing up to Trump on his immigration ban. He was also spotted at Clinton’s election night party.

Rosenstein and Nunes agreed that all documents made available to the committee would also be available for review by ranking member Adam Schiff (D-CA) and designated staff.

“The materials we are requesting are vital to the Committee’s investigation of potential abuses into intelligence and law enforcement agencies’ handling of the Christopher Steele dossier,” Nunes said in his letter, a copy of which was obtained by Breitbart News.

“The Committee is extremely concerned by indications that top U.S. Government officials who were investigating a presidential campaign relied on unverified information that was funded by the opposing political campaign and was based on Russian sources,” he added.

The DOJ also agreed to provide access to all documents requested for review by the committee related to its Russia meddling probe, after months of stonewalling an August 24, 2017, subpoena and threats by Nunes to hold Rosenstein and Wray in contempt of Congress.

“Going forward, it’s crucial that we memorialize our conversations on this issue, and that we’re as transparent as possible with the American people, who deserve answers to the questions the Committee is investigating. The subpoenas issued August 24, 2017, remain in effect,” Nunes said.

Here’s a copy of the Nunes letter:

Rep. Devin Nunes Letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein by Kristina Wong on Scribd

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