The Justice Department Inspector General found evidence “that an FBI lawyer manipulated a key investigative document related to the FBI’s secretive surveillance” of former Trump aide, Carter Page, as Fox News reported.
The outlet also reported that the edit was “enough to change the substantive meaning of the document.”
The revelation represents the first of many details from the report, which is due out in full next week, according to sources within the Justice Department. Attorney General Bill Barr alluded to the report early last week, telling media that Inspector General Michael Horowitz had completed his investigation, authored his report, and spoken with officials named in the report in order to clear the way for publication.
The full report, which will be released on December 9th, is also expected to demonstrate a number of irregularities with the FBI’s investigation into whether members of the Trump campaign, and, subsequently, the Trump transition team, coordinated with Russian officials to first alter the outcome of the 2016 presidential election and then install an information and communication pipeline between the Kremlin and President Trump in the West Wing.
In House Intelligence Committee hearings last year – commanded by Republicans who were then in charge – witnesses claimed that the FBI and DOJ relied on a now-discredited dossier on President Trump, authored by foreign agent Christopher Steele, to obtain permission to wiretap key Trump transition officials through the FISA courts, the Daily Wire reported.
Then Attorney General Jeff Sessions commanded the Inspector General undertake an investigation into the incident, and it seems the Horowitz found at least some evidence of FBI malfeasance.
“Horowitz reportedly found that the FBI employee was involved enough in the FISA process to falsely state that he had ‘documentation to back up a claim he had made in discussions with the Justice Department about the factual basis’ for the FISA warrant application,” according to Fox News, quoting the Washington Post. “Then, the FBI employee allegedly ‘altered an email’ to substantiate his inaccurate version of events. The employee has since been forced out of the bureau.”
Neither the WP nor Fox News identified the official, and both suggested the report doesn’t identify him either, but Fox News says, the WP initially reported that the “person under scrutiny…worked beneath former deputy assistant director Peter Strzok,” the FBI agent whose clear bias against President Trump tainted the investigation.
Fox News reported that the WP later removed that tidbit for unknown reasons.