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Dept. of Justice Did Not Follow Regulations in Seizing New York Times Reporter’s Emails and Text Messages

BY BRIAN HEWS

The entire Senate recently passed a unanimous resolution giving permission for the Senate to turn over documents to the DOJ for unauthorized disclosure of sensitive information.

Today, it was reported a Senate Staffer was being investigated for leaking sensitive information.

Immediately after that, the DOJ revealed it had seized a NY Times reporter’s emails and phone records in that investigation… without that reporter’s knowledge.

The reporter is Ally Watkins, and she did not know about the seizing of her records. Watkins did not know.

Ms. Watkins did have a relationship with the staffer under investigation.

That relationship led the DOJ to surveil Ms. Watkins emails and phone records “for years.”

Under the Obama administration, the DOJ became aggressive towords leaks.

But the DOJ recognized that eventually they had gone too far and AG Eric Holder put into place regulations where the DOJ would let newspaper executives know when they were investigating  reporters and negotiate accommodations.

It makes sense, the reporter does not know the DOJ is seizing their records, they have no ability to block the disclosure in court, so AG Holder put that policy into place.

The DOJ did not follow the Holder policy in the case of  NY Times reporter Watkins.

There are leaks that should be investigated, those that threaten national security.  But leaks that are embarrassing and do not compromise national security?

Trump has made it clear that he is going after leakers to make them accountable.

More to come….

 

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