- The Washington Times
Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Bruce Ohr, a veteran Justice Department official whose ties to British former spy Christopher Steele led to his 2017 demotion, resigned from the department while awaiting the results of a “disciplinary review,” a department spokesperson said Wednesday.

“Bruce Ohr retired from the Department of Justice on Sept. 30, 2020. As such, he is no longer an employee of the department,” Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec said in a statement.

“Mr. Ohr retired after his counsel was informed that a final decision on a disciplinary review being conducted by department senior career officials was imminent,” the statement continued.

The disciplinary review against Mr. Ohr was initiated as a referral from Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz’s report last year on the origins of the Russian collusion probe.

Mr. Horowitz concluded that Mr. Ohr showed “consequential errors in judgments” by not telling Justice Department leadership or his supervisors that he had met with Mr. Steele.

The dossier compiled by Mr. Steele is full of unverified, salacious allegations tying President Trump to Russians who meddled in the 2016 election.

Mr. Steele authored the dossier for research firm Fusion GPS as opposition research for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. Mr. Ohr’s wife, Nellie Ohr, worked for Fusion GPS at the time.

Despite having dumped Mr. Steele as a confidential source in November 2016, the FBI team investigating links between Mr. Trump and Russia received information from him through Mr. Ohr, the inspector general concluded. Mr. Ohr met with the FBI on 13 occasions to pass along information from Mr. Steele.

Mr. Ohr said he could not recall the FBI asking him to take a specific action, but was told to let the FBI know when he received information from the spy, Mr. Horowitz said.

Mr. Ohr’s ties to the Steele dossier and his role in disseminating it ultimately led to his demotion in December 2017. At the time, he was the fourth-ranking official at the Justice Department.

In 2018, he also lost his position as director of the Organized Drug Enforcement Task Force and removed as a counselor for international affairs in the Criminal Division.

However, he continued working at the department even as Mr. Trump repeatedly blasted Mr. Ohr and Mrs. Ohr on Twitter and in public statements.

“Is it really possible that Bruce Ohr, whose wife Nellie was paid by Simpson and GPS Fusion for work done on the Fake Dossier, and who was used as a Pawn in this whole SCAM (WITCH HUNT), is still working for the Department of Justice????? Can this really be so?????” Mr. Trump tweeted in 2018.

“How the hell is Bruce Ohr still employed at the Justice Department? Disgraceful! Witch Hunt!” he tweeted.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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