Shorter DOJ: It’s No Big Deal if DEA Agents Destroy Evidence

DOJ’s Inspector General wrote Senators Collins and Lieberman a letter summarizing its investigation into DEA Agents involved in the Secret Service sex scandal in Cartagena, Colombia.

What’s getting attention is that the DEA agents arranged a prostitute for a SS Agent. All three engaged sex workers the night in question.

But what should be getting attention is that the DEA agents, when they learned about the scope of the investigation, deleted incriminating information from their Blackberries. And DOJ–in part because it conducted compelled interviews it knew couldn’t be used in a prosecution–won’t charge them.

The OIG investigation found further that all three DEA agents had deleted data from their DEA issued Blackberry devices, and that DEA agents #1 and #2 did so after learning of the scope and nature of the OIG’s investigation. DEA agent #1 admitted to the OIG that he deleted relevant data from his Blackberry after being requested to surrender his device to the OIG. DEA agent #2 stated that he “wiped” all data from his Blackberry before providing it to the OIG, but denied that he intended to obstruct the OIG investigation. He stated that he wiped all data from his Blackberry in an effort to conceal embarrassing communications between him and his wife.

The investigation was an administrative review and all of the interviews of the DEA agents were compelled. Given all of those facts and circumstances, we did not view the matter to warrant criminal prosecution.

By compelling the interviews, the IG effectively immunized the DEA Agents, ensuring they could not be charged with obstruction. Not to mention, the Scott Bloch precedent–in which he deleted evidence and now DOJ is bending over backward to make sure he doesn’t pay any price for lying about doing so–makes it clear that DOJ will never prosecute one of its own for the kind of crime they prosecute others for all the time.

Still, let it be know that DOJ doesn’t give a shit that its DEA Agents obstruct justice and delete evidence.

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8 Responses to Shorter DOJ: It’s No Big Deal if DEA Agents Destroy Evidence

Emptywheel Twitterverse
emptywheel And if you don't like all that and talk about it 10 years in the pokey for you.
2mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel And that "amicus" has to do what the FISC says. FISC: Argue for retention. Steven Bradbury: OK, Boss.
4mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel But if I'm reading this right, when Apple challenges having to retain iMessage data, FISC can put THEIR OWN amicus to argue for Apple.
4mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel The Judge appointed by John Roberts (Bates) wrote wish list for "amicus" that may deprive providers of their own lawyers, right to challenge
5mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @englishm_ 1AM vote.
8mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Also, someone call @steve_vladeck (who I don't THINK is at reunion this weekend like I should be) so he can rip this amicus to shreds.
9mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @PGEddington The White House runs the IC? This is a new development, no? @joanneleon
12mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Another name for this bill: The American High Tech Destruction Act.
13mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz Well that narrows it down https://t.co/Tsp19ntIab
15mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @PGEddington I disagree. This is 1) what the goal has been all along 2) what NSA needs to be able to do what they want. @joanneleon
18mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Someone also call @MJZwills (if he wasn't already called as a VZ or Apple lawyer) bc this MAY try to replace provider lawyers a/amicus.
20mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Burr's bill strongly suggests there have been 702 violations (which USA F-ReDux already did, gently, but this does more aggressively).
23mreplyretweetfavorite
January 2013
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