A report released by the Office of Inspector General Friday concluded that former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe repeatedly lied about authorizing sensitive disclosures to the media.
The report states McCabe told then-FBI Director James Comey and investigators he was unaware of who authorized aides to speak with a Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reporter in October 2016 for an article entitled, “FBI in Internal Feud Over Hillary Clinton Probe.”
However, when questioned under oath on November 29, 2017, McCabe “contradicted his prior statements by acknowledging that he had authorized the disclosure to the WSJ,” made by his then-Special Counsel and the then-Assistant Director for Public Affairs.
The report states McCabe violated several FBI Offense Codes regarding Lack of Candor.
“Mr. McCabe was fired in March after Attorney General Jeff Sessions rejected an appeal that would have let the 21-year F.B.I. veteran retire just hours before he was eligible for a full government pension,” reports The New York Times.
“At the time, Mr. Sessions said Mr. McCabe had repeatedly shown a lack of candor under oath. Mr. McCabe, 50, disputed that, saying his firing was meant to undermine the special counsel investigation being led by Robert S. Mueller III, and to discredit him as a witness.”
The referenced WSJ article broke down how the Justice Department was unsure of how to pursue an investigation into how emails found on the laptop of former Rep. Anthony Weiner were related to the investigation into Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.
Here are the OIG’s findings, according to the report:
We found that, in a conversation with then-Director Comey shortly after the WSJ article was published, McCabe lacked candor when he told Comey, or made statements that led Comey to believe, that McCabe had not authorized the disclosure and did not know who did. This conduct violated FBI Offense Code 2.5 (Lack of Candor – No Oath).
We also found that on May 9, 2017, when questioned under oath by FBI agents from INSD, McCabe lacked candor when he told the agents that he had not authorized the disclosure to the WSJ and did not know who did. This conduct violated FBI Offense Code 2.6 (Lack of Candor – Under Oath).
We further found that on July 28, 2017, when questioned under oath by the OIG in a recorded interview, McCabe lacked candor when he stated: (a) that he was not aware of Special Counsel having been authorized to speak to reporters around October 30 and (b) that, because he was not in Washington, D.C., on October 27 and 28, 2016, he was unable to say where Special Counsel was or what she was doing at that time. This conduct violated FBI Offense Code 2.6 (Lack of Candor – Under Oath).
We additionally found that on November 29, 2017, when questioned under oath by the OIG in a recorded interview during which he contradicted his prior statements by acknowledging that he had authorized the disclosure to the WSJ, McCabe lacked candor when he: (a) stated that he told Comey on October 31, 2016, that he had authorized the disclosure to the WSJ; (b) denied telling INSD agents on May 9 that he had not authorized the disclosure to the WSJ about the PADAG call; and (c) asserted that INSD’s questioning of him on May 9 about the October 30 WSJ article occurred at the end of an unrelated meeting when one of the INSD agents pulled him aside and asked him one or two questions about the article. This conduct violated FBI Offense Code 2.6 (Lack of Candor – Under Oath).
Lastly, we determined that as Deputy Director, McCabe was authorized to disclose the existence of the CF Investigation publicly if such a disclosure fell within the “public interest” exception in
applicable FBI and DOJ policies generally prohibiting such a disclosure of an ongoing investigation. However, we concluded that McCabe’s decision to confirm the existence of the CF Investigation through an anonymously sourced quote, recounting the content of a phone call with a senior Department official in a manner designed to advance his personal interests at the expense of Department leadership, was clearly not within the public interest exception. We therefore concluded that McCabe’s disclosure of the existence of an ongoing investigation in this manner violated the FBI’s and the Department’s media policy and constituted misconduct.
The OIG is issuing this report to the FBI for such action as it deems appropriate.
Read the rest of the OIG report below: