- The Washington Times
Tuesday, May 24, 2022

FBI agent Curtis Heide testified in court Tuesday that he is currently the subject of an internal investigation into allegations that he withheld key evidence from an application to surveil a figure in the bureau’s probe into former President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.

FBI agent Curtis Heide testified in court Tuesday that he is currently the subject of an internal investigation into allegations that he withheld key evidence from an application to surveil a figure in the bureau’s probe into former President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.


Mr. Heide took the stand in U.S. District Court in Washington in the criminal trial of former Hillary Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann. The FBI agent said that others in the bureau are also being investigated, but he did not say how many or what positions they hold.

It is the first time anyone associated with the FBI has confirmed that an internal probe into agents’ handling of its Trump-Russia collusion investigation is ongoing.

Mr. Heide said he’s under investigation for allegedly withholding “consensual recordings” from a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Application (FISA) to surveil a target in the Russia probe.

The agent did not name the target of the probe, but it’s likely former Trump campaign volunteer Carter Page, who was the subject of a FISA warrant.


SEE ALSO: FBI leadership concealed Sussmann’s identity from field investigators, agent testifies


“There are various consensual recordings … and the exculpatory information was not disclosed in the FISA court,” Mr. Heide told the court.

Mr. Heide denied that he withheld information and said the investigation has not yet been completed.

He also acknowledged that the investigation was a serious allegation that could have “serious consequences” on his career.

Justice Department documents declassified in April 2020 revealed that Mr. Heide was the handler for a confidential human source who recorded Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos.  

In the recordings, Mr. Papadopoulos adamantly denied the Trump campaign was involved in hacking the Democratic National Committee’s emails in 2016. He also rebuffed claims the Trump campaign was working with Russia.

Mr. Papadopoulos’ denials were withheld from the FBI’s warrant application to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, according to documents released by former Attorney General William P. Barr.

Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz listed the FBI’s failure to include Mr. Papadopoulos’ denials in the Carter Page FISA application as two of 17 “significant inaccuracies and omissions.”

Mr. Heide is among a slew of FBI officials testifying for both sides in the trial of Mr. Sussmann, who is charged with one count of lying to the FBI.

Prosecutors say Mr. Sussmann deceived the FBI by telling former bureau General Counsel James A. Baker that he was not meeting with him on “behalf of any client” when he passed along the now-debunked claims the Trump Organization’s computer servers were secretly communicating with Russia’s Alfa Bank, which has ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

They say Mr. Sussmann was acting on behalf of the Clinton campaign to sabotage the Trump campaign.

Defense attorneys argue that Mr. Sussmann did not lie and his ties to the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee were well known to Mr. Baker and the FBI.

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


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