According to a top House Republican, Hillary Clinton’s former chief of staff Cheryl Mills and two other staffers were granted immunity during the FBI probe into the former secretary of state’s emails.
Mills gave federal investigators access to her laptop on the condition that findings couldn’t be used against her. Numerous deals like this are probably what hindered the bureau’s ability to build a case on Clinton.
“This is beyond explanation,” House oversight committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, said in a statement on Friday. “The FBI was handing out immunity agreements like candy. I’ve lost confidence in this investigation and I question the genuine effort in which it was carried out.”
The arrangements detailed by Chaffetz bring the total number of publicly known immunity deals in the Clinton case to five.
“Immunity deals should not be a requirement for cooperating with the FBI,” Chaffetz said in his statement.
Chaffetz said the two others granted immunity were John Bentel and Heather Samuelson. Bentel was the director of the State Department’s Office of Information Resources Management, and Samuelson was a Clinton aide
Immunity was also given to former IT specialist Bryan Pagliano. Chaffetz’ committee voted Thursday to recommend holding Pagliano in contempt of Congress after he once again ignored a subpoena to appear before the oversight panel.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., who is the top Democrat on the oversight committee, said in a statement that, “Ms. Mills was not immunized for any statements she made to the FBI, Congress, or other investigators. Of course, Republicans are trying to make political hay out of this, but the facts are that Ms. Mills cooperated fully with the Justice Department and Congress.”
Clinton campaign spokesman Brian Fallon said Republicans are “trying to make something out of nothing by rummaging through the files of a Justice Department investigation that was closed months ago without any charges whatsoever.”
Chaffetz also said he is looking forward to asking Comey questions about the immunity deals when Comey testifies Wednesday before the House Judiciary Committee.
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