In an interview on Fox News Devin Nunes (R-CA) announced that he is going to refer eight members of the Deep State to the DOJ for criminal prosecution.
Nunes did not disclose any names, but he did break down three categories in which they fall.
“Five of them are what I would call straight up referrals so just referrals that are, that name someone and name the specific crimes. Those crimes are lying to Congress, misleading Congress, leaking classified information,” Nunes said.
The other three, he said are more complicated, related to charges of conspiracy to lie to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
“There are three that I think are more complicated so you mentioned conspiracy. So the question on conspiracy is what, there’s the conspiracy statute, and then what do they need to look at under that statute. So on the first one, is FISA abuse and other matters we believe there is a conspiracy to lie to the FISA Court, mislead the FISA court by numerous individuals that all need to be investigative and looked at,” Nunes said. “The second conspiracy one is involving manipulation of intelligence. That also could [involve many] many Americans and we are, so that’s kind of the second one. As you know, we’ve had a lot of concerns with the way intelligence was used.”
The third referral Nunes called a “global leak referral.”
“There are about a dozen highly sensitive classified information leaks that were given to only a few reporters over the last two and a half-plus years, so we don’t know if there’s actually been any leak investigations that have been open, but we do believe that we’ve got pretty good information and a pretty good idea of who could be behind these leaks,” Nunes said. “Doesn’t mean we know all the people behind the leaks because when you read these a lot of these they’re always anonymous sources, and they always say something to the effect of current and former senior officials.”
Nunes has looked to Attorney General William Barr to make headway toward completing an investigation begun last year by a joint GOP-led task force comprising the Judiciary Committee and the Oversight Committee. Key to this effort, which has been bolstered by intelligence panel Republicans, was investigators looking over roughly 15 transcripts of interviews conducted by the task force last year. In recent weeks, House Judiciary Committee ranking member Doug Collins, R-Ga., released transcripts of the private interviews of former FBI agent Peter Strzok, former FBI lawyer Lisa Page, Justice Department official Bruce Ohr, his wife Nellie Ohr, former Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos, and former top FBI official Bill Priestap.
Also a potential contributing factor to Nunes’ efforts is the House Intelligence Committee’s vote last fall to release the transcripts of more than 50 interviews it conducted in its now-completed Russia investigation, which had been submitted to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence for declassification review.
Nunes has railed against what he says is collusion between the Democrats and the Russians, pointing to use of the unverified Trump dossier by the FBI to obtain FISA warrants to spy on onetime Trump campaign official Carter Page as proof of an unraveling operation to undermine the president. That dossier, compiled by British ex-spy Christopher Steele, was funded in part by Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee and was given to multiple members of the media. As noted in the GOP majority memo from the House Intelligence Committee last year, details like the dossier’s Democratic benefactors and its author’s anti-Trump bias were left out of the FISA warrant applications, which has alarmed Republican investigators concerned about political bias.
Citing the classified or sensitive nature of his eight referrals, Nunes refused to dive into too many specifics about his imminent referral, but he said “people that have followed ‘Russiagate’ for a long time, they know a lot of the names.”
In conclusion, Nunes suggested the effort could balloon to encompass dozens of people.
“We think there’s only a few people behind these leaks but there could be multiple people, so on the global leak referral, there could be several individuals,” Nunes said. “When you look at the conspiracy that could get up to a dozen, two dozen people.”
The number of criminal referrals is less important to me then what the referrals are going to be for. Leaking, lying to the FISA court, misleading Congress and Manipulating intelligence. All of these actions are directly related to the actions of the Deep State regarding manufacturing the Russia investigation.
Nunes also said that more referrals are likely still to come.
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