by Marty Walsh
Remember the explosive scandal from early 2018 involving a former IT aide with ties to terrorists who worked for top House Democrats, including former Democratic National Committee Chairman Debbie Wasserman Schultz?
Well, that scandal is back in a big way.
The Department of Justice released a statement saying it could not release records on Imran Awan due to “technical difficulties,” but later admitted in court documents that it could not release records on him because there is a secret ongoing case related to the matter, the Daily Wire reports.
“Judicial Watch filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit Nov. 7, 2018, for 7,000 pages of Capitol Police records related to the cybersecurity investigation, and Aug. 2, the DOJ agreed to begin producing records by Nov. 5,” Daily Caller investigative reporter Luke Rosiak reported. “That deadline came and went with no records being produced; on a Nov. 13 phone call, the DOJ said ‘technical difficulties’ had resulted in a delay, Judicial Watch stated in a court filing.”
In a newly released court filing, the Department of Justice wrote:
Pursuant to an Order issued by the Honorable Tanya S. Chutkan, who is presiding over a related sealed criminal matter the Government is prohibited from disclosing certain information pursuant to formal and informal information request in this matter. The Government advised Judge Chutkan of the instant FOIA matter and sought clarification from Judge Chutkan concerning the Government’s permissible response in light of her Order in the sealed matter. Defendant received the clarification December 5, 2019, the date of this filing, that permitted Defendant to say the following: The Government is prohibited from disclosing any information pursuant to an Order issued by the Honorable Tanya S. Chutkan. …
…The “difficulties” in providing responsive material was due to the unexpected and unique set of facts described above that was out of the control of the Defendant. Defendant’s only motivation was to maintain the integrity of the sealed matter as much as possible, until the issuing Court provided guidance.
The DOJ said it closed the investigation into Awan in 2018 after the Democratic IT aide accepted a plea deal after pleading guilty to one count of federal bank fraud and making false statements on a loan application in exchange for a deal.
Prosecutors also agreed to drop the charges against Awan’s wife, Hina Alvi.
President Trump himself weighed in on the outrageous matter back in 2018:
Well now it looks like the DOJ is back, and in full gear on the case.
U.S. Attorney Benton Peterson told U.S. District Court Judge Amit P. Mehta, who is presiding over the FOIA lawsuit that was filed by Judicial Watch, that DOJ was set to release a “cache of documents,” but that he was informed of a “sealing order” in the case and that he “couldn’t discuss the sealing order.”
Mehta reportedly responded by acknowledging that “typically when criminal cases have concluded, the materials become public and I don’t know whether there’s any relationship between the judge’s order and that case … The seal Judge Chutkan has ordered, is that itself sealed?”
“That’s under seal as well,” Peterson responded.
“Court records that have since been erased suggest that far from prosecuting the Awans for new crimes, the ‘sealed’ matter might be because Chutkan agreed to essentially expunge records related to Awan’s wife Hina Alvi — a request that was strongly opposed by the DOJ itself as unfounded and extraordinary,” The DCNF added. “Sometime in the past few months – as the FOIA lawsuit heated up – Chutkan appears to have belatedly granted the proposed seal or something similar. The proposed motion to seal and the government’s opposition are apparently gone from the court docket, and Alvi’s name has been removed – though all 80 documents pertaining to the Imran Awan case remain.”
This case still remains massive and very suspect.
Awan was exposed more than a year ago for his alleged illegal activity on Congressional data networks.
He was accused of bank fraud and money laundering connected to terror groups, but no charges were filed.
Awan was a senior IT aide for Shultz, but oversaw congressional data and systems for other House Democrats.
Awan was arrested and charged in early 2018 after trying to flee the country back to the Middle East. Awan and his wife were wiring hundreds of thousands of dollars to terrorists, Fox News reported.
With his close connections to top House Democrats and his decades-old relationship with Wasserman Shultz, he could provide very useful information.
Such as, how did a server from the House Democrats office go “missing” at the height of an investigation?
The server containing emails between top Democrats, the Awan family, and others went missing from congressional investigators, and we still have no idea what happened to it.
Was it destroyed? If so, what did it have on it that Democrats did not want anyone to know about?