FBI wants a new secret filing in the Hillary email investigation
I think it’s safe to say that cat’s out of the bag.
A former tech aide to Hillary Clinton wants an immunity deal with the Department of Justice kept quiet. The DOJ is currently investigating Hillary’s use of a private email account and home-brewed server while Secretary of State.
Josh Gerstein for Politico:
A lawyer for Bryan Pagliano submitted a sealed motion and exhibits to U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan Tuesday afternoon, less than two hours before the 5 p.m. deadline Sullivan set for the filing of Pagliano’s immunity agreement.
A legal memorandum filed publicly Tuesday confirms for the first time that Pagliano reached such an immunity agreement, and lays out arguments for why he should still be able to assert his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination in a Freedom of Information Act suit a conservative group, Judicial Watch, is pursuing over Clinton’s email set-up.
The document also states that Pagliano has filed a motion to keep his immunity agreement under seal.
The battle over whether to make Pagliano’s immunity agreement public is an unhelpful development for Clinton’s presidential campaign. The discussion over the details of the deal carries implications that someone involved may have committed a crime, although no one has been charged.
As I predicted last year, if there is any hope for finding a chink in Clinton’s armor, it will be via one of her aides. But I digress. Back to the story:
Pagliano was scheduled to be deposed on Monday in the Judicial Watch lawsuit. However, Sullivan postponed the deposition after Pagliano’s lawyers indicated the former tech aide planned to assert his Fifth Amendment right. In the judge’s order delaying the testimony, he ordered Pagliano to file a legal explanation justifying his planned assertion as well as a copy of an immunity agreement under which the former Clinton aide reportedly gave testimony to the FBI about his role in the private server arrangement.
Now, Sullivan will have to decide whether the immunity agreement should be made public or kept under seal. Most court records are available to the public, but judges sometimes put them off limits for privacy reasons or to protect ongoing investigations.
In a new order Tuesday afternoon, Sullivan gave Judicial Watch and government lawyers until Friday at noon to indicate whether they oppose Pagliano’s effort to file his immunity agreement under seal.
The FBI is also trying to keep a new filing in the Clinton case secret:
The FBI has asked a federal judge for permission to file a second secret declaration detailing its probe into Hillary Clinton’s private email server.
In the request, which came as part of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, the Justice Department offered for the FBI to provide “additional details” about how it “conducted a reasonable search for records” as part of the open records case and “determined that there were no records responsive.”
“These details supplement defendant’s showing that it conducted a reasonable search, but cannot be disclosed on the public record without compromising information that the FBI seeks to protect,” the department said in a filing late Monday evening.
“[T]he FBI is not required to identify a particular federal statute that it alleges has been violated in connection with the pending investigation, or the target(s) of the investigation,” in order to keep the information secret, it asserted.
But hey, at least she’s the first woman presidential nominee, right?
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