On Monday, a Maryland judge ordered the state bar to open an investigation into the three lawyers who helped former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delete her private emails, reports the Washington Times.
Anne Arundel Country Circuit Court Judge Paul F. Harris Jr. wants to hold David E. Kendall, Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson accountable for their actions in trying to help Clinton cover up her illegal actions.
“There are allegations of destroying evidence,” Judge Harris said at a hearing Monday morning.
Clinton had used a secret email account tied to a server that she kept in her private home in New York that she used to conduct official State Department business, though it was against department policy.
This announcement came a day before Clinton released her latest book What Happened, and before she begins a book tour that is going to last many months.
Ty Clevenger is the lawyer who filed the complaint to the Maryland bar. He has pursued sanctions against Clinton and her legal team before and is also pressing the FBI to release details of its investigation into the former top diplomat.
Clevenger is looking to have Clinton and her attorneys suspended or disbarred, but has been unlucky in securing that outcome with the mars in Arkansas and the District of Columbia.
This time, however, Judge Harris said Clevenger’s request appears to have merit and that Maryland will have to at least launch an investigation and demand a response from the lawyers.
The FBI had previously denied the request to view Clinton’s records regarding her emails on the grounds that there was not enough public interest to overcome Clinton’s privacy rights. However, Clevenger appealed to the Justice Department which ruled that they would expedite his request—showing that their apparently is enough public interest now.
The FBI back in November of 2016 said that Clinton’s private email server risked national security, but they did not officially charge her with anything because the bureau said that “Mrs. Clinton was too inept to understand the risks she was running,” according to the Washington Times.
“After the arrangement was spotted, Mrs. Clinton belatedly returned thousands of emails to the government and deleted the rest, which she claimed were personal. The FBI’s probe, though, found thousands of emails that were work-related but weren’t turned over to the government.”
“The most important of the mistakes I made was using personal email,”Clinton acknowledged in an interview with “CBS Sunday Morning” this past Sunday.
The Maryland Attorney Grievance Commission tried to shut down Clevenger last year, arguing that he had “no personal knowledge of the allegations” so the commission wouldn’t investigate.
Alexis Rohde, a lawyer representing the grievance commission, said “because all these complaints are confidential, I’m unable to pout that before the court,” as well as saying that the complaint was “frivolous”.
Judge Harris rejected that explanation, pointing out how ridiculous the explanation for something to be deemed “frivolous” is. He also said that the rules clearly state that the commission needs to investigate.
“I just think this is a rather easy decision at this point,” he said. “The court is ordering bar counsel to investigate.”