A Department of Justice watchdog report suggests a senior FBI official improperly accepted gifts from journalists.
Bureau policy prohibits FBI employees from engaging in unauthorized contact with members of the media. According to the report, an anonymous official accepted gifts, including tickets to dinners worth upwards of $200, during the FBI’s investigation into former President Donald Trump. The DOJ reports that between 2014 and 2016 the employee “received items of value from members of the media” and maintained “numerous unauthorized contacts with the media.”
“When later contacted by the [inspector general’s office] for a voluntary interview, the Senior FBI Official declined to be interviewed,” the office wrote. Asserting, “the authority to compel testimony from current Department employees upon informing them that their statements will not be used to incriminate them in a criminal proceeding.”
The bureau can not subpoena retired or resigned employees. Former President Donald Trump previously accused FBI officials of colluding against him with the media. In February, a former FBI lawyer was sentenced to a year of probation for tampering with documents in a Trump-Russian investigation.
ARTICLE: ANTOINETTE AHO
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
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