March 4, 2020 – FISA court bans officials involved in Carter Page wiretaps from seeking surveillance…order does not lay out consequences for FISC abuses

In Conservative Treehouse, Email/Dossier/Govt Corruption Investigations, Featured Timeline Entries by Katie Weddington

(Illustration on examining the FISA court by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times)

“Justice Department and FBI officials under review for their role in the flawed wiretaps of former Trump campaign associate Carter Page are banned from having any involvement in the pursuit of electronic monitoring through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

Judge James Boasberg issued a 19-page opinion on Wednesday, ordering that “no DOJ or FBI personnel under disciplinary or criminal review relating to their work on FISA applications shall participate in drafting, verifying, reviewing, or submitting such applications to the Court.”

“Any finding of misconduct relating to the handling of FISA applications shall be promptly reported to the Court,” the U.S. District Court judge added.

Boasberg said, “The frequency and seriousness” of the errors found by the DOJ independent watchdog “called into question the reliability of the information proffered in other FBI applications.” The judge said the government has been “acknowledging its deficiencies” and “undertaking multiple remedial measures” in response to Horowitz’s report and to court orders but also noted that “the errors the OIG pointed out cannot be solved through procedures alone” and that everyone at the DOJ and FBI “must fully understand and embrace the heightened duties of probity and transparency” in the secret court proceedings.

Boasberg touched on three main areas of the FBI’s internal FISA reforms: improvements to procedures for preparing FISA applications, improvements to training and other efforts to institutionalize the importance of accuracy and completeness, and oversight more broadly.

“While more rigorous procedures for preparing FISA applications should prove helpful, the Court is also mindful that changes in culture will require more than checklists,” Boasberg said.” (Read more: The Washington Examiner, 4/04/2020)  (Archive)


(Credit: Conservative Treehouse)

The Conservative Treehouse writes:

(…) The issues of what evidence the FBI/DOJ gathered from the exploitation of the fraudulent warrant is not addressed.  Nor does the court deal with the downstream issues of what cases may have been enhanced with illegally obtained surveillance authority.  Additionally, how the DOJ and FBI are attempting to round-up (“sequester”) any evidence that was gathered as a result of the fraudulent and unlawful FISA application is also not addressed.

Instead, within his opinion & order Judge Boasberg focuses exclusively on the recommendations from Amici Curiae David Kris, the appointed arbiter and liaison between the court and the DOJ, along with the changes proposed by FBI Director Christopher Wray and U.S. AG Bill Barr to the FISA application process.

The FISC opinion and order is embedded below and available in pdf form here.  I would strongly urge everyone to read it and make up your own mind.  From my perspective the 19-page outline is ridiculous.

The only FISC reform proposed, that could dissuade corrupt exploitation of the court, is simply a ruling that no DOJ or FBI official is allowed to participate in the FISA process if they are caught -and under review- for engaging in illicit conduct.   There are no legal consequences upon any DOJ or FBI member for any fraud upon the court in the past, present or future; they just get put in time-out. (Read more)