The former top counterintelligence expert that was dismissed from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s services is now under suspicion to have influenced James Comey’s statement about Hillary Clinton’s private email server and changed the final wording to “grossly negligent” to “extremely careless,” reports CNN.
Peter Strzok is the FBI agent who was exchanging texts messages with another colleague that appeared to be mocking President Trump. He was working under former FBI director James Comey at the time he was investigating Hillary Clinton’s private email server.
Strzok has been discovered to be the No. 2 official in the counterintelligence division during the investigation and perhaps was the one responsible for changing Comey’s language when giving out his final verdict when it came to legal implications in regards to Clinton’s emails.
“‘The shift from ‘grossly negligent’ to ‘extremely careless,’ which may appear pedestrian at first glance, reflected a decision by the FBI that could have had potentially significant legal implications, as the federal law governing the mishandling of classified material establishes criminal penalties for “gross negligence,’ reports CNN.”
Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) raised the question on the changing of language last month after documents were received from the FBI. The identity of who was behind the changes has not been revealed until now though.
It was recently revealed that Strzok was also the FBI official who signed the document officially opening an investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
He was considered to be on of the bureau’s top experts on Russia, being No. 2 official in counterintelligence.
Now that Strzok’s influence over the bureau has been made known paired with the fact that Robert Mueller dismissed him from Mueller’s investigation team makes it even more apparent that the bureau has not been completely unbiased when investigating Clinton or Trump.
While Comey’s change of language is suspicious, to say the least, he did also include in his statements about Clinton back in July 2016 that “no reasonable prosecutor” would pursue charges based on the evidence.
Grassley said that documents the FBI provided to the Senate Judiciary Committee in November included an earlier draft of Comey’s exoneration statement from May 2016, which stated: “There is evidence to support a conclusion that Secretary Clinton, and others, used the private email server in a manner that was grossly negligent with respect to the handling of classified material.”
Grassley then asked for the electronic “metadata,” which would include “who created the original drafts, who made the edits to the draft statement, and when those edits were made.”
Sources close to CNN say that Grassley has received the metadata, but he wants the FBI to provide further explanation about the changes.