Jeff Sessions Says DOJ Could Force Media to Give up Sources

Emmett Rice
August 5, 2017

"I've listened to our career investigators, FBI agents...and our prosecutors about how to most successfully investigate and prosecute these matters", 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".

Attorney General Jeff Sessions took new steps Thursday to punish cities he believes are not cooperating with federal immigration agents in a move that was met with bewilderment by local officials who said they did not know why they were being singled out.

"We are taking a stand", he said. They can not place lives at risk with impunity.

The Trump administration today issued a stern warning to those behind "the staggering number of leaks" of classified information and said that it was reviewing policies affecting media subpoenas.

Trump's outbursts against media organizations he derides as "fake news" have led to predictions that his administration will more aggressively try to root out leaks, and the timing of the Justice Department's announcement - one week after the president complained on Twitter that Sessions had been weak on "intel leakers" - raised questions about whether the attorney general was working to quell the anger of the man who appointed him.

"No one is entitled to surreptitiously fight their battles in the media by revealing sensitive government information", Sessions said in an announcement that followed a series of news reports this year on the Trump campaign and White House that have relied on classified information. "Simultaneously, the Department is reviewing policies that impact leak investigations", he continued. "We must balance the press's role with protecting national security, the lives of those who serve in the intelligence community, the armed forces and all law-abiding Americans".

According to Coats, these national security breaches do not just originate in the intelligence community but they come from a wide range of sources within the government, including the executive branch and Congress.

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To members of the intelligence community who may be considering an unauthorized leak, Coats said, "Anyone who engages in these criminal acts is betraying the intelligence community and the American people".

Four people have already been charged with unlawfully disclosing classified information or concealing contacts with foreign intelligence officers, the attorney general noted.

America's top prosecutor said the administration has tripled the number of active leak probes since January.

Coats warned that the DOJ is prepared to identify individuals "betraying" the American people by illegally sharing classified information and forwarding their information to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Hours later, the Wall Street Journal reported a grand jury had been convened in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of the Trump campaign's alleged ties to Russian Federation. And might lie detectors be used?

These first months of the Trump administration dramatically illustrate that point.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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