Judicial Watch FOIA Exposés of Obama Administration Criminality


John R. Houk, Blog Editor

October 19, 2018

The revelations of Obama/Clinton/Deep State crimes only matter if prosecutions begin!

 

JRH 10/19/18

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Judicial Watch: Federal Judge ‘Shocked’ Clinton Aide Granted Immunity by Justice Department

 

Press Release

Email Sent: Oct 17, 2018, 1:43 PM

Via Judicial Watch

 

Court Criticizes State Department for Providing False Statements on Clinton Emails

 

(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that in his opening remarks at a Friday, October 12 hearing, U.S. District Court Judge Royce C. Lamberth strongly criticized the U.S. Department of State, stating, “The information that I was provided was clearly false regarding the adequacy of the [Clinton email] search and… what we now know turned out to be the Secretary’s email system.”

Turning his attention to the Department of Justice, Judge Lamberth said that he was “dumbfounded” by the agency’s Inspector General report revealing that Cheryl Mills had been given immunity and was allowed to accompany former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to her FBI interview:

I had myself found that Cheryl Mills had committed perjury and lied under oath in a published opinion I had issued in a Judicial Watch case where I found her unworthy of belief, and I was quite shocked to find out she had been given immunity in — by the Justice Department in the Hillary Clinton email case. So I did not know that until I read the IG report and learned that and that she had accompanied the Secretary to her interview.

(In an April 28, 2008, ruling relating to Mills’ conduct as a White House official in responding to concerns about lost White House email records, Judge Lamberth called Mills’ participation in the matter “loathsome.” He further stated Mills was responsible for “the most critical error made in this entire fiasco … Mills’ actions were totally inadequate to address the problem.”)

Lamberth also complained that the Justice Department attorney representing the State Department was using “doublespeak,” and playing “word games.”

The hearing had been ordered by Judge Lamberth regarding a request from Judicial Watch for testimony under oath from Clinton, Mills and several other State Department officials regarding the State Department’s processing of Judicial Watch’s FOIA request and Clinton’s emails. The State Department still opposes all of Judicial Watch’s requests for additional discovery into the Clinton email scandal.

Judge Lamberth said he was relieved that he did not allow the case to be shut down prematurely, as the State Department had requested:

 

The case started with a motion for summary judgment [seeking to close the case] here and which I denied and allowed limited discovery because it was clear to me that at the time that I ruled initially, that false statements were made to me by career State Department officials and it became more clear through discovery that the information that I was provided was clearly false regarding the adequacy of the search and this – what we now know turned out to be the Secretary’s email system.

I don’t know the details of what kind of IG inquiry there was into why these career officials at the State Department would have filed false affidavits with me. I don’t know the details of why the Justice Department lawyers did not know false affidavits were being filed with me, but I was very relieved that I did not accept them and that I allowed limited discovery into what had happened.

 

Judge Lamberth also said the State Department was using “doublespeak” and word games:

 

THE COURT: The State Department told me that it had produced all records when it moved for summary judgment and you filed that motion.  That was not true when that motion was filed.
MR. PRINCE: At that time, we had produced all –
THE COURT: It was not true.
MR. PRINCE: Yes, it was – well, Your Honor, it might be that our search could be found to be inadequate, but that declaration was absolutely true.
THE COURT: It was not true.  It was a lie.
MR. PRINCE: It was not a lie, Your Honor.
THE COURT: What – that’s doublespeak.

 

***

 

PRINCE: There’s strong precedent saying that items not in the State’s possession do not need to be searched….

THE COURT:  And that’s because the Secretary was doing this on a private server?  So it wasn’t in the State’s possession?… So you’re playing the same word game she played?

 

In March 2016, Judge Lamberth granted “limited discovery” to Judicial Watch:

Where there is evidence of government wrong-doing and bad faith, as here, limited discovery is appropriate, even though it is exceedingly rare in FOIA cases.

***

 

[Judicial Watch] is certainly entitled to dispute the State Department’s position that it has no obligation to produce these documents because it did not “possess” or “control” them at the time the FOIA request was made. The State Department’s willingness to now search documents voluntarily turned over to the Department by Secretary Clinton and other officials hardly transforms such a search into an “adequate” or “reasonable one. [Judicial Watch] is not relying on “speculation” or “surmise” as the State Department claims. [Judicial Watch] is relying on constantly shifting admissions by the Government and the former government officials.

 

The development comes in Judicial Watch’s July 2014 FOIA lawsuit filed after the U.S. Department of State failed to respond to a May 13, 2014 FOIA request (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:14-cv-01242)). Judicial Watch seeks:

 

  • Copies of any updates and/or talking points given to Ambassador Rice by the White House or any federal agency concerning, regarding, or related to the September 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

 

  • Any and all records or communications concerning, regarding, or relating to talking points or updates on the Benghazi attack given to Ambassador Rice by the White House or any federal agency.

 

This Judicial Watch FOIA lawsuit led directly to the disclosure of the Clinton email system in 2015.

In May 2016, Judicial Watch filed an initial Proposed Order for Discovery seeking additional information. The State Department opposed Judicial Watch’s proposal, and in December 2016 Judge Lamberth requested both parties to file new proposed orders in light of information discovered in various venues since the previous May.

The full transcript of the hearing is available here.

“President Trump should ask why his State Department is still refusing to answer basic questions about the Clinton email scandal,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Hillary Clinton’s and the State Department’s email cover up abused the FOIA, the courts, and the American people’s right to know.”

Watch additional comments from Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton here.

 

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Judicial Watch: FBI Documents Detail Weiner Laptop/Clinton Email Find Just Before the 2016 Election

 

Press Release

Email Sent: Oct 17, 2018 2:58 PM

Via Judicial Watch

 

‘A significant number of these 340,000 emails appeared to be between Huma Abedin and Hillary Clinton …’

 

(Washington, DC) — Judicial Watch announced today that it has received 45 pages of FBI documents that reveal a “significant number” of 340,000 emails on the laptop of disgraced former Congressman Anthony Weiner were between the former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her top aide Huma Abedin.

Judicial Watch obtained the documents as the result of a September 2018 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed after the Justice Department did not act on two FOIA requests for Anthony Weiner laptop investigation documents, including any Clinton emails found on the laptop (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice (No.1:18-cv-02105)).

The new documents include an October 3, 2016, email to a FBI official in New York that reads:

 

Just putting this on the record because of the optics of this case.

During the course of my review of a computer seized from Anthony Weiner, a seizure and search of which was authorized by an SDNY [Southern District of New York] Search Warrant, I encountered approximately/at least 340,000 emails stored on the computer. The large number of emails appears to be a result of a mail client program installed on that computer (such as Outlook) that pulled emails from servers belonging to both Anthony Weiner and Huma Abedin.

A significant number of these 340,000 emails appeared to be between Huma Abedin and Hillary Clinton (the latter who appears to have used a number of different email addresses). This is based simply a review of the header information. I did not review content of these emails, as the warrant only authorized me to view items that would give me probable cause to believe that CP [child pornography] evidence may reside therein.

SDNY is comfortable with me continuing my review as I have, which is to NOT read any emails to/from Anthony Weiner to which his wife, or a possible attorney is a party. Even if there is a third party on those emails, I will not review their content out of an abundance of caution. Obviously, I will not review any emails to which Anthony Weiner is not a party (such as emails between Ms. Abedin and Mrs. Clinton). I just wanted to formally bring this to your attention due to the pending election, the ongoing Congressional investigation into the FBI’s own investigation into Ms. Clinton’s email activities, etc.

 

The documents also include a September 29, 2016, FBI report indicating that after agents served unidentified persons with a grand jury subpoena on September 22, “Discussions immediately ensued between the US Attorneys’ Offices in the Southern District of New York (SDNY) and [redacted], as well as the Department of Justice in Washington, DC.”

RealClear Investigations’ reporter Paul Sperry reported that only 3,077 of the emails found on the Weiner laptop “were directly reviewed for classified or incriminating information. Three FBI officials completed that work in a single 12-hour spurt the day before Comey again cleared Clinton of criminal charges.”

In a related case, Judicial Watch obtained an email revealing that fired FBI official Peter Strzok created the initial draft of the October 2016 letter then-FBI director James Comey sent to Congress notifying lawmakers of the discovery of Hillary Clinton emails on Weiner’s laptop.

The notification to Congress, according the DOJ IG, came a full month after the emails were discovered by the FBI on Weiner’s laptop. The delay, the IG suggests, may have been the result of anti-Trump bias by FBI official Peter Strzok and others:

 

In September 2016, the FBI’s New York Field Office (NYO) and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) began investigating former Congressman Anthony Weiner for his online relationship with a minor. A federal search warrant was obtained on September 26, 2016, for Weiner’s iPhone, iPad, and laptop computer. The FBI obtained these devices the same day. The search warrant authorized the government to search for evidence relating to the following crimes: transmitting obscene material to a minor, sexual exploitation of children, and activities related to child pornography.

The Weiner case agent told the OIG that he began processing Weiner’s devices on September 26, and that he noticed “within hours” that there were “over 300,000 emails on the laptop.”

***

In assessing the decision to prioritize the Russia investigation over following up on the Midyear-related investigative lead discovered on the Weiner laptop, we were particularly concerned about text messages sent by Strzok and Page that potentially indicated or created the appearance that investigative decisions they made were impacted by bias or improper considerations.

***

After October 4, we found no evidence that anyone associated with the Midyear investigation, including the entire leadership team at FBI Headquarters, took any action on the Weiner laptop issue until the week of October 24, and then did so only after SDNY raised concerns about the lack of action.

 

“These new documents show the FBI knowingly sat on the Clinton emails for over a month before notifying Congress,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “And even worse, we now know the FBI didn’t even bother to look at the emails, and then again only partially, for weeks. The Clinton email scandal needs to be reviewed again and immediately by the Justice Department.”

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Somalis Given Access to Sensitive Information


Not only has Obama set the stage for Islamic terrorists to come to America as refugees, it appears the Obama Administration has allowed the “Department of Homeland Security has given Somalis “community engagement tours,” including security briefings, in secured areas at least three major U.S. airports – Los Angeles, Minneapolis, and Columbus, Ohio.”

JRH 12/18/16

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Somalis Given Access to Sensitive Information

 

U.S. Customs, Homeland Security Records Reveal Somalis Given Security Briefings, ‘Community Engagement Tours’ in Secured Areas at Major U.S. Airports

 

Sent by ACT for America

Sent 12/17/16 6:09 AM

 

(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch today released 31 pages of records from U.S. Customs and Border Protection revealing that the Department of Homeland Security has given Somalis “community engagement tours,” including security briefings, in secured areas at least three major U.S. airports – Los Angeles, Minneapolis, and Columbus, Ohio.

 

The records came in response to a May 2016 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, which sought records, documents and communications regarding a “Community Engagement Tour” in Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport on February 18, 2016.

 

The briefings provided to the Somali groups were so sensitive that in 14 instances the agency redacted portions of the records under Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) exemption (B)(7)(e), the law-enforcement “risk circumvention” exemption, which reads:

 

Exemption 7(E) of the Freedom of Information Act affords protection to all law enforcement information that would disclose techniques and procedures for law enforcement investigations or prosecutions, or would disclose guidelines for law enforcement investigations or prosecutions if such disclosure could reasonably be expected to risk circumvention of the law.

 

In another instance, Customs and Border Protection exempted under (B)(7)(e) a portion of a February 16, 2016, “Minute by Minute Agenda” provided during a tour/briefing of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP). The material that was withheld from Judicial Watch as too law-enforcement sensitive – but provided in full to the Somali group – included a section entitled: “TSA Overview — Processing [Redacted].”  The invitees were provided briefings of the Global Entry system, APC [Automated Passport Control] system, secondary screening procedures, baggage-screening procedures and given tours of the holding cells/interview rooms.

 

Notes from the February Minneapolis St. Paul Airport tour include: “Current CBP and TSA job vacancies were discussed. Attendees responded with requests for DHS outreach efforts during Somali community events to further advertise these positions to interested individuals.”

 

The newly released records also reveal:

 

  • In addition to the Minneapolis Airport tours/briefings given to Somalis during 2014 and 2015 – and first revealed by Judicial Watch in August 2016– tours of U.S. airports and security briefings also have been provided to other groups at airports in Los Angeles and Columbus, Ohio: “Once we agree on the dates we will select the time based on prayer schedules. Another idea could be the roundtable to take place at the airport after the tour. We have done that before in LA and Columbus and it worked well both times”.

 

  • The timing of the Minneapolis Airport tour given to a group of Somalis in February 2016 was scheduled between 6-8 pm because it would “accommodate prayer times well”

 

  • During the “annual” tour, federal authorities granted excursions of the facility’s “secure areas.” It is also noted that two parties in the previous year “did not pass vetting.”

 

  • The invitation extended to the Somalis for the Minneapolis Airport tour addressed them as “Dear Colleague,” and promised “walking people through CBP’s process, walking people through TSA’s process” and provide “a step-by-step tour of our operations, designed to offer a greater understanding of airport processes and procedures.”

 

Eight senior ranking Homeland Security and Customs officials were tasked with accompanying and briefing the Somalis on the February 18, 2016, Minneapolis Airport tour, including the Minneapolis Area Port Director, the Assistant Port Director, the Watch Commander, a Homeland Security Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Senior Policy Advisor (flown in from Washington), the TSA Federal Security Director and TSA Deputy Federal Security Director.

 

The documents show Customs officials reporting that one of the invited individuals had given “CBP Chicago a hard time” following the last tour and noted three of the invitees had had investigations against them, which had since been closed.  Another invitee had an active investigation pending.

 

“Logically, information that is too sensitive to provide to Judicial Watch and the public should not have been given to a ‘community engagement tour,’” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.  “The U.S. government has been aware for years that Minnesota is a hotbed of Somali terrorist-cell activity. The behind-the-scenes tours and security briefings of the Minneapolis airport very well could have created a threat to public safety.”

 

In August 2016, the Judicial Watch blog, Corruption Chronicles, reported on the Muslim airport tour story: “The Obama administration gave Somali Muslims behind-the-scenes tours at a major U.S. airport after the group complained to Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson about feeling harassed and profiled, government records obtained by Judicial Watch reveal. The special security tours not offered to any other group occurred at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport after Department of Homeland Security roundtable meetings with local Somali leaders to obtain feedback for ‘modifications to practices that would allow for operations to be more culturally sensitive.’”

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