Offbeat DOJ refusing to give Grassley access to agent who interviewed Flynn

23:32  11 june  2018
23:32  11 june  2018 Source:   foxnews.com

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Grassley pushes DOJ for answers on flynn interview . He also asked for a transcribed interview with Pientka, the FBI special agent who interviewed Flynn with fellow agent Peter Strzok, whose anti-Trump text messages later led to his dismissal from the Russia probe.

Grassley also revealed Joe Pientka was the second FBI agent who joined Peter Strzok on January 24th, 2017 in an ambush style interview to take down General Flynn . Rosenstein refused to give the Senate Judiciary Committee the requested documents.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley isn't backing down as the Justice Department rebuffs his repeated attempts to speak with the FBI agent whose interview with Michael Flynn was used to indict the ex-national security adviser in the Russia probe.

“This is no ordinary criminal case,” Grassley, R-Iowa, wrote in a June 6 letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. “Congress has a right to know the full story and to know it now.”

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Grassley also noted that one of the FBI agents who interviewed Flynn is Peter Strzok, the deputy counterintelligence official who was removed from the special counsel investigation because of his Joy Behar Says Trump Only Helped Johnson For Access To Kardashian's Social Media Following.

Flynn from DoJ , FBI: 2ND FBI agent says also that Flynn DIDN’T lie. The committee also had a “non-partisan law enforcement officer who was present” during the interview with Flynn , Grassley revealed in the letter.

Grassley is pressing his request anew after the DOJ once again rejected his bid to speak with FBI Agent Joe Pientka and to obtain the FBI’s records of the interview.

Flynn pleaded guilty in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe to making false statements to the FBI in that interview. He also lost his job at the White House after he was said to have misled Vice President Pence about a discussion with then-Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

But Republicans on Capitol Hill are seeking more information about that interview as recent revelations have raised questions about the guilty plea itself. They say former FBI Director James Comey in fact indicated to lawmakers that FBI agents did not believe Flynn intentionally lied about the talks with Russia’s ambassador.

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“Director Comey specifically told us during that briefing that the FBI agents who interviewed Lt. General Michael Flynn ‘ saw nothing that led them to believe [he was] lying ,'” Grassley wrote. The people who know are refusing to talk. But it could be a clue.

Grassley also revealed Joe Pientka was the second FBI agent who joined Peter Strzok on January 24th, 2017 in an ambush style interview to take down General Flynn . Rosenstein refused to give the Senate Judiciary Committee the requested documents.

GRASSLEY PUSHES DOJ FOR ANSWERS ON FLYNN INTERVIEW

“Contrary to his public statements during his current book tour denying any memory of those comments, then-Director Comey led us to believe during that briefing that the agents who interviewed Flynn did not believe he intentionally lied about his conversation with the Ambassador and that the Justice Department was unlikely to prosecute him for false statements made in that interview,” Grassley wrote in May to Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray.

a man smiling for the camera © Provided by Fox News In that letter, Grassley requested the FBI’s so-called “302” documents memorializing their interview with Flynn and other supporting documents, including the agents’ notes. He also asked for a transcribed interview with Pientka, the FBI special agent who interviewed Flynn with fellow agent Peter Strzok, whose anti-Trump text messages later led to his dismissal from the Russia probe.

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Flynn from DoJ , FBI: 2ND FBI agent says also that Flynn DIDN’T lie. The committee also had a “non-partisan law enforcement officer who was present” during the interview with Flynn , Grassley revealed in the letter.

The people who know are refusing to talk. But it could be a clue. One last thing. At the end of his letter, Grassley asked the FBI to “make Special Agent Joe Pientka available for a transcribed interview Pientka is thought to be one of the two agents (with Peter Strzok) who interviewed Flynn on Jan.

Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd, in a May 29 letter to Grassley, declined the requests.

“Whatever Mr. Corney may have said and whatever Mr. Flynn's demeanor, the evidence in the public record proves beyond any reasonable doubt that Mr. Flynn knowingly made false statements about contacts with the Russian ambassador,” Boyd said.

Boyd emphasized that Flynn “admitted under oath to making a materially false statement” and was represented by two experienced attorneys when he pleaded guilty to lying to FBI agents. He also expressed concern that handing over those documents or allowing an interview with a FBI agent would “unavoidably would create the appearance of political influence.”

“For this reason, the Department is obligated at this time to respectfully decline to provide documents or arrange for staffers to interview the agent named in your letter,” Boyd wrote.

Boyd also suggested an interview with Pientka is unnecessary because the DOJ is unaware of “any allegation against or previous publicity about the agent.”

Grassley, in his response to the Justice Department, took issue with that statement, calling it “disingenuous and extremely disturbing.”

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Grassley ’s letter reads: Director Comey specifically told us during that briefing that the FBI agents who interviewed Lt. General Michael Flynn , “saw nothing that led them to believe [he was] lying.” Who is tommy robinson: Robinson tried to give the following speech that was banned 5 times.

Grassley requested that FBI Special Agent Joe Pientka, who was with Strzok during his White House interview on Jan. And Sara, are you and the House Republicans looking into whether the Army is going to give Lieutenant General Flynn a General Court Martial for his actions?

“As you well know, seeking information from a fact witness is not the same thing as an allegation of wrongdoing,” Grassley said. “Quite the contrary, it seems he is likely to be an objective, reliable, and trustworthy witness, which is precisely why the Committee would benefit from his testimony.”

House Intelligence Committee Republicans' recently released Russia report also cited top FBI officials suggesting the agents who interviewed Flynn saw no indication Flynn knew he was lying.

The development is puzzling because Flynn’s comments were indeed at odds with the evidence. The FBI reportedly intercepted conversations that countered Flynn’s initial claim that, among other things, he did not ask Russia’s ambassador to refrain from escalating the situation in response to sanctions.

The request from Grassley comes as the Justice Department and other Republicans on the Capitol Hill have been sparring over access to documents concerning the FBI's alleged informant in contact with members of President Trump's 2016 campaign at the dawn of the Russia probe.

NUNES SETS DEADLINE FOR DOJ TO PROVIDE DOCUMENTS ON ALLEGED FBI INFORMANT

In a letter sent Friday to Rosenstein, House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., said the records should be provided to all committee members "and designated staff" rather than just the so-called "Gang of Eight" -- which refers to Republican and Democratic leaders in both houses of Congress as well as top lawmakers from the intelligence panels.

"Your continued refusal to permit Members of Congress and designated staff to review the requested documents is obstruction of a lawful Congressional investigation," Nunes wrote.

Asked about the letter, however, a DOJ official said Rosenstein is currently “representing the United States in a brief unrelated visit to a foreign nation, one of America’s key intelligence partners,” indicating he would plan on responding during the previously scheduled briefing on Thursday.

“He, along with the FBI Director and DNI Coats, look forward to further briefing and again presenting responsive documents to Chairman Nunes and the rest of his colleagues in the Gang of 8 meeting scheduled for Thursday of this week,” the official said.

Fox News’ Pamela K. Browne, Catherine Herridge, Adam Shaw and Samuel Chamberlain contributed to this report.

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