Four IT staff for the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and other lawmakers lost their jobs in February after suspicions arose that they breached security on the House IT network.

The U.S. Capitol Police named Hina Alvi, her husband Imran Awan, and his brothers Abid and Jamal “as subjects of a criminal probe.”

Now relatives have said that Alvi has fled the United States with her daughters and sought protection from the Pakistani government.

From The Daily Caller:

“I came to know from one of their relatives that Hina Alvi and her daughters are moved to Pakistan, Hina Alvi saying ‘we have moved here in Pakistan permanently,’” the Awans’ stepmother, Samina Gilani, told TheDCNF.

Two other sources close to the family, who requested anonymity because they believe it is a “national security issue,” also said that Hina has gone to Pakistan.

Gilani said in court documents the Awan brothers have convinced Pakistani officials that they are VIPs and travel the country with a police motorcade — an assertion that seemingly gives them a major incentive to seek protection there, as well as raising questions about how the computer jockeys obtained that status.

The Crime

In February, reports surfaced that five House employees face an investigation for breaching House IT systems and stealing equipment. Media named Alvi, Abid, Imran, and Jamal in reports the following days, but I have not found the name of the fifth person. Lawmakers fired the four when the suspicions arose and barred the brothers “from computer networks at the House of Representatives.”

The House members included three congressmen on the intelligence panel and three on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. The officials suspect the four of “accessing members’ computer networks without their knowledge and stealing equipment from Congress.”

The Representatives affected include Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX), Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-LA), Rep. Lois Frankel (D-FL), Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), and then-Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), and Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY).

The congressmen have tried to downplay the access the four had, but a former House Information Resources (HIR) technology employee disputed them to The Daily Caller:

“They had access to EVERYTHING. Correspondence, emails, confidential files — if it was stored on the Member system, they had access to it,” the former House Information Resources (HIR) technology worker with first-hand knowledge of Imran’s privileges told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

Technology employees who work for members must initially get authority from HIR, a component of the House’s chief administrative officer, which maintains campus-wide technology systems.

“There were some things – like access to the House email system that were totally controlled by the technicians at HIR. In order for certain permissions to be granted, a form was required to ensure that there was a paper trail for the requested changes. Imran was constantly complaining that he had to go through this process and trying to get people to process his access requests without the proper forms. Some of the permissions he wanted would give him total access to the Members’ stuff.”

“IT staff at HIR can be tracked for every keystroke they make,” the worker said. But by comparison, “when these guys were granted access to the Member’s computer systems there is no oversight or tracking of what they may be doing on the Member’s system. For example they could make a copy of anything on the Member’s computer system to a thumb drive or have it sent to a private server they had set up and no one would know.”

The Suspects

Concerns over the suspects span into 2016, though, since the four of them landed themselves in massive debts over the past few years.

The stepmother I mentioned above accused the brothers of keeping her away from her dying husband and kept her in a “sort of illegal captivity” from October 2016 to February 2017 as a way to retrieve his life insurance. They allegedly “threatened her in an effort to get money that their father had stashed in Pakistan.”

She “has filed a separate police complaint alleging insurance fraud.”

It turns out Abid has a debt of $1 million over a failed car business he ran in Falls Church, VA. His former business associates have claimed that he “had stolen money and vehicles from them.” The Daily Caller continued:

A vendor who supplied Abid’s business with cars said that he had not paid for the vehicles and wouldn’t return them, either. “The consignment agreements state it clearly that either Mr. Awan sells the cars for the agreed price no less $62,200 or return my cars back,” he wrote.

On a car record showing the title had been released to Abid, the vendor said “this is no authorise [sic] also I have no information about this car bought by defendant under my company business buy and sale no authorise [sic].”

The list of people connected to his failed business include Dr. Ali Al-Attar, “an Iraqi politician who is wanted by U.S. authorities and has been linked to Hezbollah.” The failed business took a $100,000 loan from Attar and could not pay him back.

Sudden Move to Pakistan

After the investigation started, Imran and Hina immediately made moves. They withdrew their daughters from schools and Hina allegedly told people around her she wanted to move to Pakistan.

The Daily Caller found that the she listed her house “and an apartment she owns for sale.”

Gilani told The Daily Caller that Imran often “’boasted he had many contacts in USA and Pakistan also. He also said that if [I called even] the whole United States police on them,’ he would not face consequences, Gilani told TheDCNF. ‘Imran Awan threatened that he is very powerful’ and would use that power to have people kidnapped in Pakistan, she said in court documents.”