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GOP aghast over FBI’s ‘astonishing agreement to destroy Clinton aides’ computers

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Republican lawmakers pressed Attorney General Loretta Lynch for answers in the FBI’s agreement to destroy computers connected to Hillary Clinton’s email scandal.

The top-ranking Republicans fired off a letter to Lynch following allegations that the FBI made side deals to destroy the laptops of two Clinton aides who were questioned in the email probe. The arrangement “is simply astonishing given the likelihood that evidence on the laptops would be of interest to congressional investigators,” the letter, signed by four Republican committee chairmen, stated.

They expressed concern that the “FBI inexplicably agreed to destroy the laptops knowing that the contents were the subject of Congressional subpoenas and preservation letters.”

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte wrote Lynch a letter Monday asking why immunity deals for former Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills and ex-campaign staffer Heather Samuelson included the agreement to destroy the devices after they were reviewed.

The Virginia Republican also signed the letter Wednesday, along with House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah; House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif; and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa.

Wednesday’s letter said the side deal raised “serious questions” about why the Justice Department would allow it.

“What is the basis for the FBI’s legal authority – in any circumstance – to destroy records which are subject to a congressional investigation or subpoena?” the lawmakers asked in the letter.

They also asked if, in fact, any evidence was found and whether that evidence, or any laptops, were subsequently destroyed.

Less than a month after the laptop side deals were made on June 10, FBI Director James Comey announced that no charges would be brought against Clinton or her staff.

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Frieda Powers


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