Holder OK’d search warrant for Fox News reporter’s private emails, official says

Michael Iskoff
NBC News

Attorney General Eric Holder signed off on a controversial search warrant that identified Fox News reporter James Rosen as a “possible co-conspirator” in violations of the Espionage Act and authorized seizure of his private emails, a law enforcement official told NBC News on Thursday.

The disclosure of the attorney general’s role came as President Barack Obama, in a major speech on his counterterrorism policy, said Holder had agreed to review Justice Department guidelines governing investigations that involve journalists…

…Holder previously said he recused himself from the AP subpoena because he had been questioned as a witness in the underlying investigation into a leak about a foiled bomb plot in Yemen. His role in personally approving the Rosen search warrant had not been previously reported.

A Justice Department spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The law enforcement official said Holder’s approval of the Rosen search, in the spring of 2010, came after senior Justice officials concluded there was “probable cause” that Rosen’s communications with his source, identified as intelligence analyst Stephen Kim, met the legal burden for such searches. “It was approved at the highest levels– and I mean the highest,” said the law enforcement official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. He said that explicitly included Holder…

…Justice officials have since said they do not intend to criminally charge Rosen, but media groups have condemned the issuance of the search warrant itself…


Read the entire article at OpenChannel/NBC News


Related:   Court Which Issued Secret Subpoena for James Rosen’s Emails Kept the Filings Secret for a Year and a Half Despite Being Ordered by Another Federal Court to Disclose the Documents

At The Conversation, reported by the Washington Post.

The judge who failed to follow the law has two things to say:

1. He’s “sorry.”

2. He is conducting a top-down inquiry to discover which of his nameless low-level employees is responsible:

Lamberth blamed a series of administrative errors and said a review of the “performance of the personnel involved is underway.”Well. That’s just wonderful.

Isn’t it awfully funny how facts that could have embarrassed Barack Obama kept being inadvertently delayed until after the November 2012 elections?…


Read the whole thing!


Update: New York Times: Obama Leak Investigations ‘Chilling,’ ‘Threatening’

…In a Wednesday editorial written by the full editorial board, the Times said it was a threat “to fundamental freedoms of the press to gather news” when the Obama administration labeled a Fox News reporter a “co-conspirator” in a criminal investigation.

Well, no kidding.

The editorial is titled “Another Chilling Leak Investigation,” and doesn’t hide its disgust with an administration willing to criminalize everyday news-gathering as an excuse to seize a reporter’s emails, phone records, and even the phone records belonging to his parents…


Gov’t Used ‘Rubbish’ Argument to Get Warrant for Fox News Reporter’s Phone, Emails

Judge Napolitano says the government knows James Rosen committed no crime in his dealings with a State Department source.


Update: Ace posted this update to the “red” headline: Slight Knock-Down of Eric Holder Story



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