FBI Investigators Focusing on Whether Hillary Clinton Violated This Provision of Espionage Act: Report

An intelligence source claims FBI investigators are now focusing on whether Hillary Clinton violated the Espionage Act with her private email use, specifically pertaining to a “gross negligence” subsection of the law.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks during a community forum, Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2015, in Davenport, Iowa. (AP/Charlie Neibergall)
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks during a community forum, Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2015, in Davenport, Iowa. (AP/Charlie Neibergall)

The source “familiar with the investigation” told Fox News that the law, 18 USC 793 subsection F, does not require information to be classified in order to amount to a violation.

Fox News explains:

The intelligence source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity citing the sensitivity of the ongoing probe, said the subsection requires the “lawful possession” of national defense information by a security clearance holder who “through gross negligence,” such as the use of an unsecure computer network, permits the material to be removed or abstracted from its proper, secure location.

Subsection F also requires the clearance holder “to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer. “A failure to do so “shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.”

The source said investigators are also focused on possible obstruction of justice. “If someone knows there is an ongoing investigation and takes action to impede an investigation, for example destruction of documents or threatening of witnesses, that could be a separate charge but still remain under a single case,” the source said. Currently, the ongoing investigation is led by the Washington Field Office of the FBI.

Additionally, a veteran FBI agent reportedly told the Daily Mail that Clinton could face 10 years in prison for possible Espionage Act violations and failing to tell President Barack Obama about her private email system.

However, in order for Clinton be prosecuted for the latter, the law states that she must have had “knowledge” that information had been “illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed” and failed to report it to her superior.

The Espionage Act, 18 USC 793, states:

(f) Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer —

Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

Clinton has repeatedly claimed she did nothing wrong as none of the emails she sent and received were “marked classified at the time.” Several of her emails were later upgraded to classified status.

Read the full Fox News report here.

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