It’s bad enough that FBI Director James Comey agreed to pass out immunity deals like candy to material witnesses and potential targets of his investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s illegal private email server.
But now we learn that some of them were immunized despite lying to Comey’s investigators.
In the latest bombshell from Congress’ probe into what’s looking more and more like an FBI whitewash (or coverup) of criminal behavior by the Democratic nominee and her aides, the Denver-based tech who destroyed subpoenaed emails from Clinton’s server allegedly lied to FBI agents after he got an immunity deal.
That’s normally a felony. As a federal prosecutor, Comey tossed Martha Stewart in jail for it and helped convict Scooter Libby for it as well. Yet the key Clinton witness still maintained his protection from criminal prosecution.
With Comey’s blessing, Obama prosecutors cut the deal with the email administrator, Paul Combetta, in 2015 in exchange for his full cooperation and honest testimony. But the House Judiciary Committee revealed Wednesday that he falsely told agents in a Feb. 18 interview that he had no knowledge that emails he bleached from the server were under congressional orders to be preserved as evidence.
In a second interview on May 3, Combetta admitted he in fact did know. But he still refused to reveal what he discussed with Clinton’s former aides and lawyer during a 2014 conference call about deleting the emails.
Instead of asking Attorney General Loretta Lynch to revoke his immunity deal and squeezing him, Comey let him go because he was a “low-level guy,” he testified at the House hearing. It’s yet another action by Comey that has left former prosecutors shaking their heads.
“When I was at the Department of Justice, your reward for lying to a federal agent was a potential obstruction of justice charge,” House Judiciary Committee member Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas) said. “It wasn’t immunity.”
Ratcliffe argued Combetta violated the terms of his immunity agreement and therefore “shouldn’t have immunity anymore.”
Another panel member, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), established that former Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills also lied when she told agents she had no idea Clinton maintained a private email server. She once sent the server administrator a message asking “is server ok” after emails she sent Clinton kept bouncing back. Yet Mills continued to get immunity as well.
Comey said he looked “very hard” but couldn’t make an obstruction case “against any of the subjects we looked at.” He claimed not to have the evidence.
But the case suffered from the fact that he was denied evidence by Clinton and her minions, including:
- A personal Apple email server used by Clinton in her first two months in office.
- An Apple MacBook and thumb drive that contained her email archives, which was “lost” in the mail.
- Two BlackBerry devices that were missing SIM cards and SD data cards.
- 13 mobile devices either lost or smashed with hammers.
- Two iPads.
- Server backup files that were deleted.
- Copies of emails located on the laptops of Mills and another aide who got immunity that were wiped clean with software called BleachBit after the Benghazi committee sought the documents.
- Clinton’s server email archive, which was deleted using BleachBit by Combetta after the emails were subpoenaed.
- Backups of the server email files, which were manually deleted.
This mass destruction of evidence was known to Comey. It’s in his investigative case summary. Yet he couldn’t make an obstruction case?
“Any one of those in that long list says obstruction of justice,” Ratcliffe said. “Collectively, they scream obstruction of justice.”
Ignoring such evidence leads “not just reasonable prosecutors but reasonable people to believe that maybe the decision on this was made a long time ago not to prosecute Hillary Clinton,” he added.
In other words, the fix was in.
Either that, or Comey led one of the shoddiest probes in FBI history. God help us if that’s the way he’s investigating the 1,000-plus ISIS terrorist cases now open in all 50 states.