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Internal battles and secretly recorded conversations led to new ‘very high priority’ FBI investigation

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The FBI and Department of Justice had a fierce battle behind the scenes about whether or not to “aggressively” pursue an investigation into the Clinton Foundation after the bureau obtained secret recordings of a suspect talking about the foundation but prosecutors regarded the information as worthless hearsay.

Using informants and information from an unrelated investigations, FBI agents thought they had enough to go after the foundation based on the book “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich,” the Wall Street Journal reported.

The FBI interviewed its author, Peter Schweitzer, but it was another interview of someone involved in another corruption case that raised their antennae, according to the Journal.

The FBI had secretly recorded conversations of a suspect in a public-corruption case talking about alleged deals the Clintons made, these people said. The agents listening to the recordings couldn’t tell from the conversations if what the suspect was describing was accurate, but it was, they thought, worth checking out.

Prosecutors thought the talk was hearsay and a weak basis to warrant aggressive tactics, like presenting evidence to a grand jury, because the person who was secretly recorded wasn’t inside the Clinton Foundation.

FBI investigators grew increasingly frustrated with resistance from the corruption prosecutors, and some executives at the bureau itself, to keep pursuing the case.


According to the report some blamed the FBI’s #2 man, deputy director Andrew McCabe, for seeking to stop the investigation.

This news comes after a report that a PAC for Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat with longstanding ties to the Clintons, gave nearly $500,000 to the senate campaign of McCabe’s wife. Dr. Jill McCabe.

Amid the internal finger-pointing on the Clinton Foundation matter, some have blamed the FBI’s No. 2 official, deputy director Andrew McCabe, claiming he sought to stop agents from pursuing the case this summer. His defenders deny that, and say it was the Justice Department that kept pushing back on the investigation.

At times, people on both sides of the dispute thought Mr. Capers agreed with them. Defenders of Mr. Capers said he was straightforward and always told people he thought the case wasn’t strong.


Despite that, a new report from Fox News on Wednesday said the investigation into the Clinton Foundation is now a “very high priority.”

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Carmine Sabia


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