Tech

Apple subpoena prompts internal review, calls William Barr, Jeff Sessions testifies

Washington — Both Judiciary watchmen and Senate Democrats have vowed to investigate the Trump administration Secret seizure of communication records Of the people associated with the House Intelligence Committee.

Senator Chuck Schumer (Democratic Party of New York) and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Dick Durbin (Democratic Party of Illinois) congress on Friday with former Attorney General Jeff Sessions and William Barr. A revelation that announced the investigation because he asked to testify in.

In May, tech giant Apple Inc. notified committee officials that the Justice Department issued a grand jury subpoena in February 2018, according to House Committee officials. Officials said the Commission immediately contacted the Department of Justice for explanation and additional information, adding that the Department of Justice notified the Commission last month that the issue had been resolved.

At the time of the summons, the president at that time

Donald Trump

And officials in his administration, including Mr. Sessions, Identify the cause of the leak About Mr. Trump’s contact with Russia in the 2016 campaign.

Mr. Trump’s second Attorney General, Mr. Barr, took over about half a dozen leak investigations when he took office in 2019. He instructed a federal prosecutor in New Jersey to tackle the case he was suffering from under his predecessor, and then briefly explained. The top executive said someone familiar with the matter.

On Friday, Mr. Barr tried to stay away from development, saying he was unaware of the leak case, which had a subpoena related to Congressman’s communications.

“I didn’t remember the incident,” Barr told The Wall Street Journal. “No matter what I did, it was taken before I arrived.”

The Justice Department occasionally investigates and prosecutes members of the House of Representatives in corruption investigations, but legal experts on national security issues say there is no precedent for investigating members of the House for leaking national security information. Most rules governing the handling of confidential information are established under the president’s executive authority and are not laws. There is little precedent for whether a member of parliament as an officer of an equivalent government agency must obey.

“As far as I know, no lawmaker has been prosecuted for unauthorized disclosure of confidential information,” said Bradley Moss, Washington’s national security lawyer.

“Any prosecution will have constitutional implications,” Moss said. “There will be a dispute over the separation of powers. There will be a dispute over the abuse of authority.”

Members of the House of Representatives are also exempt from prosecution based on actions taken in a public position in the House of Representatives under the United States Constitution. 1971, Sen at that time. Mike Gravel has put the highly classified Pentagon Papers in Congressional records. This triggered a federal grand jury investigation, but was not charged against the senator.

The report of the subpoena follows a previous revelation that the Justice Department under Mr. Barr summoned the records of reporters from several media outlets, including the Washington Post, The New York Times, and CNN.

The Justice Department said it would no longer require a record of reporters’ contacts when investigating the government’s leak of confidential information.

Horowitz, an inspector general at the agency, said his office would also investigate these cases. His announcement came after Attorney General Merrick Garland and his Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco requested observers to investigate the handling of the Leak case sector.

Horowitz said he would investigate whether the subpoena or investigation was “based on improper consideration.”

“The department’s actions reported under Attorney General Barr are shocking and clearly fit into the horrifying tendency to oppose the use of authority,” said Andrew Bates, a White House spokesman. Stated.

Senator Schumer and Senator Durbin said in a statement that other officials involved must also testify in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee under an oath. “We expect Republican colleagues to join us to reach the root of this serious problem,” they said.

Democrats are not unilaterally authorized to issue subpoenas, so at least one Senate Republican must participate in the vote to issue a subpoena. The chamber is evenly divided by 50-50. Senator Richard Blumenthal, Connecticut, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said:

“The Justice Department must provide information and answers to the Justice Commission, which is vigorously investigating this abuse of power,” the statement said.

The Judiciary Committee includes Senator Ben Sasse (Republican, Nebraska) earlier this year. Voted for conviction With Mr. Trump who instigated the riot on January 6 Voted for commission creation To investigate the day’s attack on the Capitol, which was thwarted by opposition from other Senate Republicans.

The subpoena applies only to the metadata and includes phone records but not content, a person familiar with the matter said. A search warrant is usually required to obtain the contents of the communication.

At Apple, protecting user privacy is at the heart of our business. The Justice Department sought to force Apple to create software that would allow investigators to unlock the perpetrator’s iPhone in a 2015 terrorist attack in San Bernardino, California. The company refused to do so, eventually avoiding a court showdown when the Federal Bureau of Investigation used outside parties to access the device.

Even if you refuse to unlock your phone, Apple regularly complies with court orders for US and foreign information. Apple, the first six months of 2020, the latest year data was available Responded to thousands of requests Regarding access to accounts and devices, according to the numbers disclosed on the company’s website. Apple did not respond to requests for comment.

Speaker of the House

Nancy Pelosi

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff called for an investigation into the Justice Department’s pursuit of communications data, first reported by The New York Times. Records of at least 12 people connected to the panel in 2017 and early 2018, including Mr. Schiff’s records, were reported to have been confiscated in the investigation.

The House Intelligence Committee continues to seek additional information from the Justice Department, officials added. “

Write to Sadie Gurman at sadie.gurman@wsj.com And Siobhan Hughes siobhan.hughes@wsj.com

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Apple subpoena prompts internal review, calls William Barr, Jeff Sessions testifies

Source link Apple subpoena prompts internal review, calls William Barr, Jeff Sessions testifies

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