The FBI will ask agents Peter Strzok and Lisa Page to preserve any bureau records stored on their personal accounts and devices, a conservative government watchdog group said Wednesday.
Judicial Watch said the FBI will make the request as part of its Freedom of Information Act lawsuit in which it had asked for thousands of page documents on personal devices of the pair, including emails, text messages, chats and travel documents.
Some texts between Mr. Strzok and Ms. Page on their FBI-issued phones have been preserved, but it is not known how much the pair communicated through personal devices.
On Monday, U.S. District Court Judge Reggie B. Walton ordered the FBI to began processing 13,000 pages of previously undisclosed emails exchanged between Mr. Strzok and Ms. Page between February 1, 2015 and December 2017, Judicial Watch said. The first 500 pages of the records are said to be processed by June 29, 2018.
Judge’s Walton’s order is what resulted in the FBI asking Mr. Strzok and Ms. Page to preserve their communications.
“The FBI’s purposeful slow-walking of the Strzok-Page materials shows contempt for both transparency law and the public interest in figuring out how and why the FBI was politicized to target President Trump, while protecting Hillary Clinton,” Judicial Watch President Tom Litton said in a statement. “Director Wray and Attorney General Sessions should step up and speed up the release of these documents.”
Mr. Strzok and Ms. Page, who were having an extramartial affair, sent each other anti-Trump texts in 2016 while they were investigating Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server to send classified emails while secretary of State. The texts referred to President Trump as an “idiot” and loathsome.” A cryptic discussion about “an insurance policy” to stop Mr. Trump was also part of the texts.
Both joined special counsel Robert Mueller’s team investigating Russian collusion with the Trump campaign. Mr. Strzok was dismissed from the team because of the texts. Ms. Page left the Mueller probe for unknown reasons and resigned from the FBI earlier this month. Mr. Strzok is still at the bureau.
Mr. Trump blasted the pair in a text this month, referencing the resignations of Ms. Page and former FBI attorney James Baker. The departure of Mr. Baker, which also occurred earlier this month, is unrelated to the text scandal.
“Lisa Page, who may hold the record for the most Emails in the shortest period of time (to her Lover, Peter S), and attorney Baker, are out at the FBI as part of the Probers getting caught?” the president tweeted. “Why is Peter S still there? What a total mess. Our Country has to get back to Business!”
• Jeff Mordock can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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