Federal prosecutors are still weighing whether to bring criminal charges against former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, and The Washington Post reports that a grand jury has been convened on the matter.
McCabe’s attorney, however, remains confident that the former top FBI official will be cleared.
CNN reported in April that the Justice Department’s inspector general had referred its findings on McCabe to the US Attorney’s office in Washington for possible criminal charges associated with lying to internal investigators.
Citing two people familiar with the matter, The Washington Post reported Thursday that a grand jury has met and summoned more than one witness on the matter. Such a move is regularly used as an investigative tool and does not necessarily mean charges will be brought. The sources declined to identify the witnesses to The Washington Post.
In a statement, McCabe’s lawyer Michael Bromwich acknowledged prosecutors’ use of a grand jury and questioned the timing of the Post’s report.
“Today’s leak about a procedural step taken more than a month ago – occurring in the midst of a disastrous week for the President – is a sad and poorly veiled attempt to try to distract the American public,” Bromwich said in a statement. “We remain confident that a thorough review of the facts and circumstances related to this matter will demonstrate that there is no basis on which criminal charges should be brought.”
A spokesman for the US attorney’s office in DC declined to comment.
Back in April, the Justice Department’s inspector general Michael Horowitz issued a report finding that McCabe “lacked candor” on multiple occasions when discussing his colleagues’ disclosure of information for a Wall Street Journal article about the FBI’s Clinton Foundation investigation. Horowitz’s report also determined that McCabe was not authorized to disclose the investigation’s existence. McCabe has denied the allegations.
The IG’s findings formed the basis of McCabe’s firing as the FBI’s No. 2 official in March by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.