A recently retired FBI supervisory intelligence analyst told Congress in a whistleblower disclosure that agents in Boston were improperly pressured by Washington to open criminal cases on 140 people who had simply taken a bus ride to the Jan. 6 rally in Washington. The agents refused because there was no evidence the attendees engaged in any criminality, the whistleblower said.
George Hill’s testimony to the House Judiciary Committee also raised new civil liberty concerns about the FBI’s Jan. 6 probe, including whether the Bureau mined Americans’ bank records without court authority and whether the agency possesses video footage it is refusing to release because it identifies undercover agents and human sources who were at the U.S. Capitol that fateful day.
Hill and Friend both are being advised by former Senate investigator Jason Foster, the head of Empower Oversight, a whistleblower support nonprofit. Foster, who worked for years under Sen. Chuck Grassley, said the whistleblowers have provided Congress with a portrait of the FBI that, “keeps feeding public suspicion that it’s too focused on political narratives and not focused enough on fighting crime.”
“After 9/11, everybody was upset that we didn’t connect the dots,” Foster said. “We didn’t find a needle in the haystack, and what’s happened since is we turned the FBI into a domestic surveillance organization, and now we collect tens of thousands of haystacks and now it’s even harder to find the needles.
“And this is a perfect example of that, where you have tons of people [who] just want to push numbers, and they want to get tons of cases open so that they can say they’re addressing domestic violent extremism and they can say that there’s a big problem with it.”
“[T]his is another example of the evidence that we’re seeing, that a lot of that just appears to be hype, and it was predicated on just the thinnest” of evidence… The fact that someone is in DC and goes to a rally, as George said, is just not reason [enough] to open up a criminal investigation.”
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