“It’s not OK to lie to the FBI. Not even a little. It’s actually a crime.”
Roger Stone sentenced to 3 years for lying, federal prosecutors sought up to 9 years
by Jerry Dunleavy, Justice Department Reporter | | January 29, 2021 07:10 PM
Rep. Devin Nunes and other Republicans blasted the probation sentence with no prison time for ex-FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith, who pleaded guilty to fraudulently altering a CIA email during the FBI’s flawed pursuit of surveillance against former Trump campaign associate Carter Page.
Nunes, the former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee who unearthed a host of problems with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act process in the Trump-Russia investigation, told the Washington Examiner that “once again, we see a two-tiered system of justice where average Americans get investigated and imprisoned based on fake media narratives like ‘Russian collusion’ while government officials who perpetuated these abuses get off scot-free.” He added: “The FBI, DOJ, and judicial system need to regain Americans’ trust, and this absurd sentencing won’t help.”
Judge James Boasberg of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, who is also on the FISA court, denied the Justice Department’s efforts seeking up to six months behind bars, instead giving Clinesmith probation, 400 hours of community service within a year, and no fine.
“Mr. Clinesmith lost his job, and his government service is what has given his life much of its meaning. “He was also earning $150,000 a year — and who knows where the earnings go now. He may be disbarred or suspended from the practice of law … and may never be able to work in the national security field again,” Boasberg said when explaining his decision. “These are substantial penalties… What is more, he went from being an obscure career government lawyer to standing in the eye of a media hurricane. He has been threatened, vilified, and abused on a nationwide scale.”
Anthony Scarpelli, an assistant U.S. attorney on Durham’s team, told the court on Friday that “the defendant’s criminal conduct tarnished and undermined the integrity of the FISA program” and that “it has lasting effects on DOJ, the FBI, the FISC, the FISA process and trust and confidence United States citizens have in their government.”
Doublespeak: The FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into the Trump team made “at least 17 significant errors or omissions”, aka unsworn falsifications, in the FISA applications.
Our review found that FBI personnel fell far short of the requirement in FBI policy that they ensure that all factual statements in a FISA application are “scrupulously accurate.”