New evidence released Thursday shows that the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), closed its criminal counterintelligence investigation of retired Gen. Mike Flynn on January 4, 2017, only to have it reopened by Peter Strzok.
“The goal of the investigation was to determine whether [Flynn], associated with the Trump campaign, was directed and controlled by and/or coordinated activities with the Russian Federation in a manner which is a threat to the national security and/or possibly a violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act,” the FBI memorandum formally closing its investigation of Flynn stated. “Following the initiation of captioned case, the [Crossfire Hurricane] team conducted a check of logical databases for any derogatory information on [Flynn].”
“No derogatory information was identified in FBI holdings,” the memo stated.
According to the FBI document, the federal law enforcement agency also asked a redacted agency, likely the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), to conduct a similar search of its own records for derogatory information against Flynn, who at the the time was the incoming National Security Adviser for then-President-elect Donald Trump.
“No derogatory information was reported back to the FBI,” the memo concluded.
The memo also reported that the FBI used at least one confidential human source, or “CHS” in FBI lingo, to spy on Flynn during its investigation of him. Leads offered by that CHS resulted in “no derogatory information” about Flynn. At the same time, the FBI also “initiated surveillance on a certain Russian subject” to determine whether “there was contact between him and [Flynn].”
“No contact between the two individuals was observed by the surveillance teams,” the memo closing the investigation against Flynn stated.
“Following the compilation of the above information, the [Crossfire Hurricane] team determined that [Flynn] was no longer a viable candidate as part of the larger CROSSFIRE HURRICANE umbrella case,” the memo continued. “A review of logical [redacted] databases did not yield any information on which to predicate further investigative efforts.”
“The FBI is closing this investigation,” the memo concluded.
Text messages included in the latest court filings in Flynn’s ongoing criminal case show that Peter Strzok, who was fired from the FBI for misconduct, ordered an unnamed associate managing the investigation to not close the Flynn investigation, notwithstanding the fact that the FBI concluded there was no legal or factual basis to continue its investigation of Flynn.
“Hey if you haven’t closed RAZOR, don’t do so yet,” Strzok texted at 2:14 p.m. on January 4, 2017.
“Razor still open,” Strzok immediately texted to Lisa Page, a former assistant to fired former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe. Strzok and Page reportedly had an adulterous affair that was captured by their text messages to each other.
Additional texts from Strzok on February 10 also confirm suspicions that Strzok personally rewrote the official FBI account of his and FBI agent Joe Pientka’s interview of Flynn on January 24, 2017.
“Lisa, you didn’t see it before my edits that went into what I sent you,” Strzok texted his former lover at 5:37 p.m. on February 20, 2017. “I was trying to completely re-write the thing so as to save [redacted] voice and 2) get it out to you for general review and comment in anticipation of needing it soon.”
The redaction is likely a reference to Pientka, who took the original notes during the Flynn interview.
“[S]houdl say 1) trying to not completely re-write….,” Strzok quickly texted to Page. “[S]hould. f*ck. I did the edits better than I’m IMing[.]”
The new documents support the case made by Flynn’s current defense attorney Sidney Powell that the FBI had no legal justification for its interview of Flynn following the inauguration of President Donald Trump. Flynn, who pleaded guilty in late 2017 to making false statements to Strzok and Pientka during the January 24 interview, is currently attempting to withdraw his plea, citing gross government misconduct and ineffective defense counsel at the time.
You can read the full documents released today here.