After Making Bank Fraud Legal, Eric Holder’s DOJ Makes Torture Legal

DOJ has announced that the two ongoing investigations it had into torture have been closed for lack of admissible evidence.

The Attorney General announced today the closure of the criminal investigations into the death of two individuals while in United States custody at overseas locations.

Eric Holder tried to put a good spin on this event.

AUSA John Durham has now completed his investigations, and the Department has decided not to initiate criminal charges in these matters. In reaching this determination, Mr. Durham considered all potentially applicable substantive criminal statutes as well as the statutes of limitations and jurisdictional provisions that govern prosecutions under those statutes. Mr. Durham and his team reviewed a tremendous volume of information pertaining to the detainees. That review included both information and matters that were not examined during the Department’s prior reviews. Based on the fully developed factual record concerning the two deaths, the Department has declined prosecution because the admissible evidence would not be sufficient to obtain and sustain a conviction beyond a reasonable doubt.

[snip]

Mr. Durham and his team of agents and prosecutors have worked tirelessly to conduct extraordinarily thorough and complete preliminary reviews and investigations. I am grateful to his team and to him for their commitment to ensuring that the preliminary review and the subsequent investigations fully examined a broad universe of allegations from multiple sources. I continue to believe that our Nation will be better for it.

I also appreciate and respect the work of and sacrifices made by the men and women in our intelligence community on behalf of this country. They perform an incredibly important service to our nation, and they often do so under difficult and dangerous circumstances. They deserve our respect and gratitude for the work they do. I asked Mr. Durham to conduct this review based on existing information as well as new information and matters presented to me that I believed warranted a thorough examination of the detainee treatment issue.

I am confident that Mr. Durham’s thorough reviews and determination that the filing of criminal charges would not be appropriate have satisfied that need. Our inquiry was limited to a determination of whether prosecutable offenses were committed and was not intended to, and does not resolve, broader questions regarding the propriety of the examined conduct. [my emphasis]

But when it comes down to it, it means our government either refuses or is completely incapable of holding the powerful to account.

John Kiriakou is being prosecuted for speaking about waterboarding. But the guys who water doused someone to death? They enjoy the same impunity as the banksters.

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emptywheel @GregDjerejian Feel like @NSArchive released new evidence of details on cutting oil prices to hurt Russia in recent years.
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emptywheel @GregDjerejian Didn't we do something similar to kill oil prices in the Reagan days?
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emptywheel Loving that Torture Report coming out, bc I can loathe lying self-interested apologists like John Rizzo as much as Stewart Baker.
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