Judicial Watch found that the Robert Mueller team “wiped” at least 25 phones used during the Mueller investigation.  The DOJ/IG requested to see the devices as part of their investigation into the origins and activities of the Mueller investigation.

The media, of course, is silent about this bombshell, but Congressional Republicans are demanding answers.

According to Judicial Watch, numerous devices were wiped.  Here’s a partial list of findings:

  • 20 phones were reported wiped of data due to “accidental wipe” (usually from entering the password too many times);
  • 2 phones were reported wiped after placed in airplane mode from which they could not be unlocked because password was forgotten, including the phones of Andrew Weissmann (2 phones) and two deputies of Mueller, Kyle Freeny and Rush Atkinson.
  • 1 phone was wiped clean without explanation.
  • There are no records of Robert Mueller’s phone’s ever being reviewed.

. . . . The newly released records include a log of all mobile phones issued to the Mueller team that reveals a total of 25 names, including Robert Mueller himself, along with Strzok, Page and Andrew Weissmann. Eight of the 25 names are redacted under FOIA’s “personal privacy” exemptions.

Judicial Watch’s president, Tom Fitton, noted the possible obstruction occurring: “The pandemic of ‘wiped’ phones among the Mueller team requires a criminal investigation of this destruction of evidence and  potential obstruction of justice and other crimes. . . . The DOJ and FBI hid these records for nearly two years – which only adds to appearance of a cover-up.”

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany also noted the problematic disappearance of potential key evidence.

“Now we learn what Mueller’s team was doing,” she said. “Several dozens, think about that, several dozens of devices returned damaged, wiped clean, some of them intentionally so. One of those devices was Andrew Weissmann’s … who was rebuked 9-0 by the Supreme Court for prosecutorial overreach and misconduct — and Lisa Page too, among these offenders.

“Muller [sic] is saying, ‘We’ll prosecute you for process, while we, several dozens of us, are engaging in the same kind of obstruction.’ That is uncalled for.”

President Trump is, naturally, furious.

Congressional Republicans are demanding answers.

Fox News reports:

Congressional Republicans demanded answers on Friday as to whether there “was a widespread intentional effort” to wipe the mobile devices of multiple people on former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team during the Russia probe, and suggested this could amount to “anticipatory obstruction of justice.”

. . . . The calls come after newly released records from the Justice Department showed that at least several dozen phones belonging to members of Mueller’s team were wiped of information because of forgotten passcodes, irreparable screen damage, loss of the device, intentional deletion or other reasons—all before the Justice Department inspector general’s office could review the devices.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, penned a letter to Attorney General Bill Barr and FBI Director Christopher Wray on Friday, pressing for details on what actions were taken to recover material deleted from the mobile devices assigned to Mueller’s team.

“It appears that Special Counsel Mueller’s team may have deleted federal records that could be key to better understanding their decision-making process as they pursued their investigation and wrote their report,” Grassley wrote. “Indeed, many officials apparently deleted the records after the DOJ Inspector General began his inquiry into how the Department mishandled Crossfire Hurricane.”

. . . . Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., on Friday also demanded answers, telling Fox News he was “outraged by it.”

“I’m not a lawyer, but I am aware of the concept of anticipatory obstruction of justice,” Johnson told Fox News in a text message, saying the action of “accidentally wiping a phone because you entered the wrong password too many times” makes him “HIGHLY skeptical,” and a dozen people making “the same mistake is COMPLETELY unbelievable.”

“This needs to be fully investigated,” he said, adding that he has requested a phone call with Wray on Friday to discuss.

Johnson also sent a letter to Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz requesting a probe over the issue.

In addition to Sens. Grassley and Johnson, Sen. Lindsay Graham says that he intends to get to the bottom of this and to determine whether or not one or more of those involved obstructed justice.

Fox News continues:

Meanwhile, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., slammed Mueller’s team on Fox News’ “Hannity,” saying: “If you can’t manage your own phone, why should we trust you to investigate a crime?”

Graham added: “The question is, did they obstruct justice, did they intentionally delete information from their phone because [Inspector General Michael] Horowitz was on the case?”

Graham said that question should be considered by U.S. Attorney for Connecticut John Durham, who is currently investigating the origins of the Russia probe.

“My job, as chairman of the Judiciary Committee, is to find out how the Department of Justice and the FBI got Crossfire Hurricane so wrong, why they lied to the FISA court, [and] to make sure it never happens again,” Graham said.

This is a developing story; we will provide updates as more details become available.

 

 
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