Sessions says leak probes have tripled and four have been charged

05 August, 2017, 00:14 | Author: Kristopher Anderson
  • Sessions says leak probes have tripled and four have been charged

"This culture of leaking must stop", Sessions said. "No government can be effective when its leader cannot discuss sensitive matters in confidence or to talk freely in confidence with foreign leaders".

But Berry says Albuquerque has been seeking to work with immigration authorities since he took office in 2009 and vehemently denied Albuquerque was a "sanctuary" city.

"We are prepared to take all necessary steps to one identify individuals who illegally expose and disclose classified information", said Coats, who argued they have put American operatives, troops, and sensitive programs at risk.

The most recent leak came this week when The Washington Post printed transcripts of contentious phone calls Trump had with Mexico's president and Australia's prime minister.

Sessions announced no new leak cases, but told reporters that the Department of Justice has tripled the number of leak investigations and created a new counterintelligence squad at the FBI to handle them.

"I've listened to our career investigators, FBI agents and others, and of prosecutors about how to most successfully investigate and prosecute these matters", Sessions said. "Simultaneously, the Department is reviewing policies that impact leak investigations", he continued. "The Department of Justice is open for business".

The nation's top law enforcement official cited no current investigations in which disclosures of information had jeopardized the country but said the number of criminal leak probes had dramatically increased in the early months of the Trump administration.

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Coats added that the leaks don't always originate in the intelligence community, but that some in the Executive Branch and Congress are also responsible-and that all those entrusted with access to classified material must be more vigilant.

Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, promised that he would help with the crackdown.

"Anyone who engages in these criminal acts is betraying the intelligence community and the American people", Coats said.

"We will find out, we will investigate you, we will prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law and you will not be happy with the result", he said.

President Trump has been enraged by the continual leaks coming out of the White House and intelligence community, and complained on Twitter last week that his attorney general was "weak" when it came to going after leakers. That includes, they said, policies that require high-level approval before reporters and media companies can be compelled to turn over information.

"It's easier to figure out who's leaking than the leakers may realize", Conway said on Fox News. "This is really incensing the people who are here to serve and that begins with the president and the vice president, our cabinet [and] our chiefs of staff", said Conway.

The climate for leaks has been attributed at least partly to holdovers from the Obama administration and Republican bureaucrats who supported other primary candidates and actively oppose President Trump and his agenda.

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