DOJ defends Holder's statement on leak investigation
June 3rd, 2013
04:44 PM ET
11 months ago

DOJ defends Holder's statement on leak investigation

Washington (CNN) – The Justice Department said Monday that Attorney General Eric Holder's recent testimony about leak cases involving reporters was "accurate and consistent," the latest response in an effort to refute charges the attorney general perjured himself in Congressional testimony.

Holder authorized a search warrant to get e-mails from a reporter's personal account but the Justice Department said at no time "have prosecutors sought approval to bring criminal charges against the reporter."

In a letter to the House Judiciary Committee, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Peter Kadzik wrote explaining that the request for a search warrant involving the reporter's e-mail satisfied the Privacy Prevention Act of 1980 and was done properly.

The committee had asked Holder to explain his testimony from May 15 in which he said, "With regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material, that is not something that I have ever been involved in, heard of, or would think would be a wise policy."

The letter signed by Justice Department official Peter Kadzik quoted another statement by Holder saying the focus of leak prosecutions is on those who "break their oath and put the American people at risk, not reporters who gather this information."

MORE: Republicans still questioning Holder's comment on leak investigations

A May 2010 affidavit detailed the effort to get e-mails from the account of Fox News reporter James Rosen. He was not charged in the leak investigation although the document referred to him as a possible co-conspirator. The only person charged in the case was Stephen Jin-Woo Kim who allegedly leaked a classified report concerning North Korea to Rosen. According to the document, the government believed Kim had destroyed some possibly incriminating e-mails he had sent to the reporter and the prosecutors hoped to find those e-mails in the reporter's inbox.

"Probable cause sufficient to justify a search warrant for evidence of a crime is far different from a decision to bring charges for that crime; probable cause is a significantly lower burden of proof than beyond a reasonable doubt, which is required to obtain a conviction on criminal charges," Kadzik wrote in the three-page response.


Filed under: Eric Holder • Justice Department
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. rs

    Whoops! Another Republican lie-fueled controversy bites the dust!

    June 3, 2013 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  2. BrianMemphis

    These aren't the droids your looking for......

    June 3, 2013 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    A cogent and accurate argument that points out just how insanely ridiculous it is to conflate what is said in an affidavit to obtain a search warrant with actual prosecution of someone.

    Of course, this means that the GOPers/Teatrolls will simply scream louder and more often and claim that he's making excuses in order to drown out everything else. They couldn't get anything out of this as though something illegal was done, so they turned to perjury accusations. Now that those are looking unlikely to get them Holder's scalp, I suspect we'll be hearing "Obama should just ask him to resign because his presence is too much of a distraction blah blah blah." They don't care how they get the scalp...they just know they want it.

    June 3, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  4. Pete

    Where is the investigation,conviction of the players involved in exposing Valerie Plame the CIA agent getting back at her husband for exposing Bushs inaccuracies in the Iraq WMD scandal he wrote about in the NY TIMES..Issa where are you, committes when real Americans like democrates need you,ha ha yah moron!!

    June 3, 2013 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  5. sonny chapman

    Holder needs to step down so that the Repub. Congress can move on to addressing the many real problems that Middle Class Americans face;or to quote John Boehner in 2010, "Jobs, jobs,jobs".

    June 3, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  6. Liberal Sense (Or lack thereof)

    Holder investigating himself?

    This is laughable at best. Only a true idiot would believe this report.

    June 3, 2013 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  7. Gary

    Now this media led distraction is over, it's time for Holder to go after Rosen. Kim leaked the info to one, Rosen told the world. Fox needs to answer to this. Let Fox scream, thats all they're good for anyways.

    June 3, 2013 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    "Holder needs to step down so that the Repub. Congress can move on to addressing the many real problems that Middle Class Americans face"

    If you think handing the GOP/Teatrolls a scalp will diffuse their blood lust and attempts to ultimately lynch Obama, rather than simply encourage them because they think they're succeeding, then I've got some moon colony land to sell you. Holder's not the distraction. The GOP/Teatrolls' racist, bigoted tantrum in response to the election of a black man as POTUS and their own impending demographic Armageddon...THAT is the distraction.

    June 3, 2013 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  9. pat

    Well, what did you expect them to say? In more news...It was also revealed that Holder's Justice Dept. will also be investigating the IRS...(and then finding no wrongdoing!) I feel better already...GEEEEEEZ!
    Kinda makes ya feel all warm & fuzzy inside, huh?

    June 3, 2013 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  10. The REAL Truth...

    @Liberal Sense (Or lack thereof) – This is laughable at best. Only a true idiot would believe this report.
    ----------------------------------–
    Too bad the Obstructionist Party is once again being shellacked. No matter how hard you try, there's nothing of substance in any of these accusations. That so many Teatrolls and right wingers parrot that "fair and balanced" bastion of independent news (Fox Entertainment) amazes me at their inability to decipher cognitive dissonance. Intelligent beings question the timing of these so-called scandals. If the Obama administration is as corrupt and you say, how come it took FIVE years of Republican obstructionism for them to surface. I'm sure you have reasons for that eh?

    June 3, 2013 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  11. rosethornne

    Gosh, you mean Issa is full of it?
    That's a shocker.
    Really.

    June 3, 2013 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  12. MesaMax

    Holder has shown himself to be nothing more than a political hack. Much to the disgrace of the DOJ, and the American People.

    June 3, 2013 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  13. stuartx

    Eric witHolder
    Stedman should take his show the O Network with Oprah. Then it can get cancelled.
    he is an embarssment.

    June 3, 2013 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  14. Murf

    Issa's job per the Republican Party: Dig Up any and everything that can be investigated about Democrats and significantly prevent and/or delay Congress from making America better.

    Issa's arrest record alone plus the fact he was once suspected of setting his own factory on Fire should, should disqualify him from holding any public office, even dog catcher.

    June 3, 2013 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  15. Gloria_Alaska

    It is amazing how easily people accept this explanation. You may not care about Rosen, but if you let it go then it could happen to anyone next time. The article says "With regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material, that is not something that I have ever been involved in, heard of, or would think would be a wise policy." POTENTIAL prosecution. If there was no potential prosecution then there would not have been a search warrant.

    June 3, 2013 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  16. Tigas

    Holder investigating himself... of course he didn't lie! Really?!

    June 3, 2013 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  17. Anonymous

    If any of these scandals happened under Bush, The Liberals would have demanded George's head on a platter. Isn't it IRONIC that Obama would have us believe he personally directed the take-down of Bin Laden, but conveniently, he was not involved in any part of Benghazi, the IRS scandal which is targeting enemies of "the administration", and the Justice Department targeting a reporter from the only News Outlet that does not worship Obama.

    HOLDER "I have never been involved in..." what a pile of BS

    June 3, 2013 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  18. Ghostwriter

    Republicans are so good at playing the word game that it defies logic that they don't comprehend why this is a non-issue.

    Besides, we are talking about lawyers and having dealt with them on numerous occaisions, words mean everything. And the fact that there is nothing that shows the Justice Dept actually going after Rosen means that he didn't lie. More to the point, if he did, republicans would have already started perjury hearings.

    June 3, 2013 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  19. His-Panic

    Allegations that the IRS targeted Tea party, religious groups such as Billy Graham, pro Israel groups ,small businesses other groups that opposed Obama , and held up their applications as non profit groups while other " progressive groups" were awarded status without any hold up. Also that IRS leaked donor list of names ,contributions to Obama re-election staff, which is a felony. And the IRS is gonna be in charge of Obamacare?? This Administration is very arrogant and confident , much like the Nixon administration was before its fall.....I will be all too happy when the pendulum swings the other way to the right.....

    June 3, 2013 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  20. strangerq

    so what now like Obama 49 GOP nothing

    June 3, 2013 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  21. The drones are out in full force

    You can't get a warrant executed without intent to prosecute. But of course all the drones are in denial of th biggest crook president ever seen. Oh yeah holder used to defend terrorists at Guantanamo bay too. That's why the drones love him so much

    June 3, 2013 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  22. Deathstalker74

    For all those claiming that these investigations are taking too much away from other pressing issues, perhaps if Holder and others like Shulman in the Obama administration would be honest with us, we could reduce the amount of money and time spent on these scandals. And to those blaming Holder, vilification of the accuser is not going to fly this time. Even with all the Progressive extremists dominating many of these forums, I think there are enough level-headed people out there who recognize that what Holder, the IRS, and the State Dept. did is dishonest and worthy of rebuke.

    June 3, 2013 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  23. Dc

    Fire this crook now and take his Marxist boss with him! Good riddance to this Marxist trash!

    June 3, 2013 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  24. Jack

    Well McCain (that steriod user) and the rest of those clowns (GOP) are running out of Dems to persecute...they're still upset about losing to Obama.

    June 3, 2013 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  25. mysimru

    OMG can't you people see what is happening in this country. If you only read the left wing media you cannot even begin to realize just what is happening. There has been nothing on CNN about the UN arms treaty at all that the USA is about to sign. I firmly believe that Obama want to engineer the down fall of this country and he is well on the way to doing it. Just keep belileve everything you read on CNN and keep your head buried in the sand. You cannot blame the IRS scandal on the Republicans. or the Rosen affair on them either and as far as Bengazi, if we got the truth out of this administration it would be wonderful. At least Nixon cared about this country and stepped down, but you will not see Obama step down as that would not fit his agenda to bring this country down.

    June 3, 2013 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
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