Congress Wants Info: Former Top FBI Lawyer Being Investigated For Leaks

James Baker, the former top lawyer for the FBI, has been under a Department of Justice investigation since 2017, for allegedly leaking sensitive national security information to the media. The information regarding the leak investigation was confirmed in a letter from top House Republicans on Tuesday who are seeking more information on Baker from the Department of Justice.

Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, and Freedom Caucus Chairman Rep. Mark Meadows, R-NC, included a transcript of the congressional hearing with Baker in their five page letter to DOJ United States Attorney John Durham. Jordan and Meadows said the investigation into Baker was confirmed during the October, 2018 hearing when Baker’s attorney, Daniel Levin, told the lawmakers his client was under investigation.

In the transcripts, Levin says, “you may or may not know, [Baker has] been the subject of a leak investigation…a criminal leak investigation that’s still active at the Justice Department. So I’m cutting off —”

Moreover, Meadows and Jordan noted the committee’s concern over the FBI’s handling of the Russia investigation involving President Trump and his campaign. They said that “high ranking DOJ and FBI officials, including the FBI General Counsel James Baker and DOJ Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, took the self-described ‘unusual’ step of inserting themselves into the evidentiary chain of custody.”

“We are writing to request additional information about your ongoing criminal invention of James Baker, as disclosed to the Committees by Mr. Baker’s attorney,” the lawmakers said in the letter to Durham.

FBI officials could not be immediately reached for comment.

This reporter revealed Baker was under investigation on July, 27, 2017 after being informed by three government officials of the ongoing investigation. Those sources, who had knowledge of the investigation, said Baker is the top suspect in an ongoing leak investigation involving the media. What Baker shared with the media was apparently sensitive national security information but the sources did not specify what was shared.’

Federal law enforcement officials who spoke to said the FBI and DOJ have been conducting extensive investigations over the past several years into leaks at the bureau and other government agencies. Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in November, 2017 that the DOJ was conducting 27 leak investigations and noted that there was only 9 leak investigations under the Obama administration.

Meadows and Jordan warned in the letter that “the conduct of DOJ personnel, largely at the FBI, during this time departed from the norms of impartial justice and fairness that Americans expect from these institutions.”

“As we uncovered more facts during our oversight, we became concerned investigative and prosecutorial decisions may have been influenced by political bias,” the lawmakers wrote. “We have interviewed a multitude of current and former DOJ and FBI officials during our investigation and intend to continue our work in this Congress, hopefully with the support of Chairman Elijah Cummings.”