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Cinnamon

Goodlatte and Chaffetz Call on DOJ to Preserve All Clinton Investigation Documents

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 Cinnamon    23,103

Washington, D.C. – House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) today called on the Department of Justice again to preserve all documents related to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.

Last week, Director James Comey notified Congress that the FBI was investigating a new source of emails related to the Clinton email server investigation. It is reported that these new sources of emails are previously-unexamined devices from Huma Abedin, Secretary Clinton’s advisor and her husband, Anthony Weiner.  Reports also suggest that these emails number 650,000 and are from multiple devices related to the FBI’s investigation of Mr. Weiner’s interactions with teenaged girls.

In their letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Chairmen Goodlatte and Chaffetz call on the Justice once again to preserve all documents related to the initial Clinton investigation and to preserve the newly discovered documents found on devices belonging to Huma Abedin and Anthony Weiner.

Full letter can be viewed here or below.

November 3, 2016

The Honorable Loretta Lynch
Attorney General
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530

Dear Madam Attorney General:

We write to supplement our previous request that you preserve all documents referring or relating to Secretary Clinton’s use of a personal email server.

On October 28, 2016, Director Comey notified Congress that the FBI was investigating a new source of emails related to the Clinton email server investigation.  Subsequent reports indicate that these new sources of emails are previously-unexamined devices from Huma Abedin, Secretary Clinton’s advisor, and her husband, Anthony Weiner.  Reports also suggest that these emails number 650,000 and are from multiple devices related to the FBI’s criminal investigation of Mr. Weiner.

As the respective Chairmen of the committee of jurisdiction over the Department of Justice and the FBI, and the principal oversight committee for the House of Representatives, we hereby request that you preserve all documents, communications, and other records or data obtained in the course of that investigation.  Specifically, preserve any information found on Ms. Abedin’s and Mr. Weiner’s devices, in email accounts referring or relating to those devices and/or their owners, and on any other source that the Department or the FBI reviews that is related to this case. This request includes, but is not limited to, all emails, documents, files, and metadata, regardless of relevancy or claims of privilege, and should be construed in the broadest possible form, understanding that Congressional oversight powers are broader and more far-reaching than those permitted by Department policy, and the limits of subpoenas in the oversight versus the investigatory context are substantially different.  Moreover, pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 2704, we expect that you have sought backup preservation of email contents from Yahoo and any other service over which Ms. Abedin and Mr. Weiner communicated. This request necessarily includes, but is not limited to, any and all documents reviewed or sorted by FBI and DOJ pre-reviewers (i.e., the “taint team” or “filter team”), before they are handed over to the investigative team.

In ensuring compliance with this request, it is your responsibility to make sure that anyone who is coming into contact with documents related to this investigation is aware of the preservation order, and that all documents are preserved in their initial form, including all markings, notes, and metadata.  As in our previous request, “preserve” means taking reasonable steps to prevent the partial or full destruction, alteration, testing, deletion, shredding, incineration, wiping, relocation, migration, theft, or mutation, of records in any form, as well as negligent handling that would make such records incomplete or inaccessible.  Preservation also includes any evidence related to tampering, hacking, or exploitation of the emails by foreign adversaries or other outside parties. Further, we request that you:

Exercise reasonable efforts to identify and notify former employees and contractors, subcontractors and consultants who may have access to such electronic records that they are to be preserved;

Exercise reasonable efforts to identify, recover, and preserve any electronic records which have been deleted or marked for deletion but are still recoverable; and

If it is the routine practice of any agency employee or contractor to destroy or otherwise alter such electronic records, either halt such practices or arrange for the preservation of complete and accurate duplicates or copies of such records, suitable for production, if requested.

We also reiterate our previous request of October 5, 2016, to preserve all records related to the initial Clinton investigation, and the preservation request discussed in the email conversation with your staff on October 27, 2016.  At both of those points, Department staff informed Committee staff that you would preserve materials related to the Clinton investigation, including, but not limited to, the laptops of Heather Samuelson and Cheryl Mills.

Thank you for your prompt attention to and compliance with this request.  If you have questions or require additional information, please contact Christopher Grieco of Chairman Goodlatte’s staff at (202) 225-7869 or Liam McKenna of Chairman Chaffetz’s staff at (202)-225-5074.

Sincerely,

BOB GOODLATTE
Committee on the Judiciary

JASON CHAFFETZ
Committee on Oversight and Government Reform

https://judiciary.house.gov/press-release/goodlatte-chaffetz-call-doj-preserve-clinton-investigation-documents/

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