According to a new report from The Wall Street Journal, secret recordings of a suspect talking about the Clinton Foundation led to an interoffice feud between Federal Bureau of Investigation agents who wanted to "aggressively pursue" alleged corruption and Department of Justice prosecutors who claimed the recordings were "worthless hearsay."
The FBI agents used informants and recordings from unrelated corruption investigations to collect what they believed was substantial evidence to merit more aggressive investigation tactics, such as the use of subpoenas, direct witness interviews, and conferring with a grand jury. The investigation began in the summer of 2015, based on claims made in Peter Schweizer's book Clinton Cash.
For their article, WSJ reporters Devlin Barrett and Christopher Matthews interviewed officials at multiple agencies:
Starting in February and continuing today, investigators from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and public-corruption prosecutors became increasingly frustrated with each other, as often happens within and between departments. At the center of the tension stood the U.S. attorney for Brooklyn, Robert Capers, who some at the FBI came to view as exacerbating the problems by telling each side what it wanted to hear, these people said. Through a spokeswoman, Mr. Capers declined to comment.
The roots of the dispute lie in a disagreement over the strength of the case, these people said, which broadly centered on whether Clinton Foundation contributors received favorable treatment from the State Department under Hillary Clinton.
Senior officials in the Justice Department and the FBI didn't think much of the evidence, while investigators believed they had promising leads their bosses wouldn't let them pursue, they said.
These new revelations, coupled with FBI Director James Comey's letter to Congress stating he was reopening the investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while secretary of state indicate there may be a rebellion of sorts taking place in the bureau.
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