A high-ranking Republican congressman recently sent the FBI a series of written questions, demanding answers for the bureau's handling of "secret informants" who provide "bogus information" to federal officials, on the heels of an investigative report into the program's "systemic deficiencies," according to an exclusive piece from the Washington Examiner.
In that same report, Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, who's expected to become the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee when the Republican-controlled Congress convenes in January, requested specific answers from FBI Director Christopher Wray on the informants program.
"The FBI's processes and procedures have proven to be partisan-driven and untrustworthy in recent years," Jordan told the Examiner. "This is the latest example of systematic corruption happening at the highest levels of the FBI, and the American people deserve full transparency."
The Examiner also writes the FBI's Confidential Human Source (CHS) program has been marred by "red flags" over the years, dating back to the Trump administration, when British ex-spy Christopher Steele — the author of the discredited dossier claiming that former President Donald Trump colluded with Russia — apparently provided false information to the bureau and was subsequently compensated by the U.S. taxpayer.
Steele's main dossier source, Russian analyst Igor Danchenko, was also revealed to have been on the FBI’s payroll from 2017-20, the Examiner reports.
For the fiscal years of 2012 through 2018, informant sources annually received approximately $42 million from the FBI. The Examiner also reports that "federal informants have even been authorized by the FBI to commit crimes on the dime of taxpayers, and public records dated between 2011 and 2014 show authorization for more than 22,800 incidents," according to Freedom of Information Act records.
As part of that oversight process, Jordan requested a "detailed accounting" of the $42 million paid out to participants in the CHS program, according to the Examiner.
"The FBI has had a poor track record in recent years of relying on CHS's in high-profile, sensitive investigative matters whose information later proves to be misleading, made-up, or otherwise unreliable," Jordan reportedly expressed to Wray in the letter.
Jordan also cited a 2019 report from the Justice Department's inspector general office, revealing "numerous issues" with the CHS vetting process, claiming it hadn't followed the protocol measures that were established in 2006, when managing long-term informants.
The Examiner reports that 16 recommendations were then submitted to the DOJ and FBI, as a means of infusing the CHS program with "integrity and reliability."
In Jordan's letter, the Ohio Republican also inquired about the FBI's "policies and procedures" for handling sensitive investigative matters involving public officials, political candidates, and media outlets.
Jordan also asked for clarity from Wray, as to how the bureau utilizes paid informants in FISA warrants.
According to the Examiner, the FBI acknowledged receipt of Jordan's letter, but has yet to formally respond to the inquiry.
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