FBI: Clinton Email 'Careless' but Not Criminal

But Justice Department will have final say
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 5, 2016 10:29 AM CDT
FBI: Clinton Email 'Careless' but Not Criminal
FBI Director James Comey makes a statement at FBI Headquarters in Washington Tuesday.   (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Hillary Clinton has dodged a huge bullet ahead of the convention: The FBI chief said Tuesday that after an exhaustive review of her use of a private email server as secretary of state, the agency will not recommend criminal charges. James Comey did criticize Clinton and her staff for being "extremely careless," but he said no "reasonable prosecutor" would bring charges. Comey also stressed that the Department of Justice would have the final say on the matter. As the New York Times notes, Attorney General Loretta Lynch—who had controversial meeting with Bill Clinton last week—already has said she would defer to the recommendation of the FBI and her own department's investigators. The FBI reviewed more than 30,000 Clinton emails and identified 110 in 52 email chains that had information deemed classified at the time the emails were sent; of those, eight contained "top secret" information, said Comey, per the Washington Post.

In previous cases that resulted in criminal charges, investigators found evidence of "clearly intentional and willful" mishandling of information, and "we do not see those things here," said Comey, per the Hill. “Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information,” he said. Donald Trump was quick to pounce: "The system is rigged," he tweeted. "General Petraeus got in trouble for far less. Very very unfair! As usual, bad judgment." In another, he wrote that "Crooked Hillary" escaped charges despite compromising national security. "Wow!" (Read more Hillary Clinton 2016 stories.)

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