(National Sentinel)Â Exposed: The Justice Department is set to release six months’ worth of text communications between demoted FBI counterterrorism official Peter Strzok and his paramour, FBI lawyer Lisa Page, the bureau once said were missing.
On Tuesday, investigative reporter andÂ Fox News contributor Sara Carter tweeted: “BREAKING: DOJ will make the 6 months of missing texts that were eventually located by IG between Strzok and Page available to Congress sometime tonight or tomorrow, according to sources…developing.”
BREAKING: DOJ will make the 6 months of missing texts that were eventually located by IG between Strzok and Page available to Congress sometime tonight or tomorrow, according to sources…developing
— Sara A. Carter (@SaraCarterDC) April 24, 2018
The timeframe — December 2016 until the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller in May 2017 — is considered crucial.
Initially, the FBI announced that it had failed to backup communications between the pair, but the “missing” texts were eventually found by the Justice Department Inspector General’s office.
As of January, the DoJ hadÂ only given lawmakers about 15 percent of five monthsâ€™ worth of missing messages that the FBI said were lost from thousands of department cellphones due to a data backup glitch.
As reported by theÂ Washington Examiner‘s Byron York at the time:
The Justice Department has identified about 50,000 Strzok-Page texts. But that is apart from the texts between Dec. 14, 2016 and May 17, 2017, that were declared missing a week ago but are now being recovered. So, the total is apparently 50,000 plus the currently unknown number of formerly missing texts.
But that number refers only to the Strzok-Page texts that were sent and received on FBI-issued Samsung phones. There are a number of instances in the texts in which the two officials say that they should switch the conversation to iMessage, suggesting they continued to talk about FBI matters on personal Apple phones. For investigators, those are particularly intriguing texts â€“ what was so sensitive that they couldnâ€™t discuss on their work phones? â€“ but the number of those texts is unknown. And of course, they have not been turned over to Congress.
Also in January, presidential attorney Jay Sekulow said newly-released texts (at the time) between FBI officials Peter Strzok and his mistress Lisa Page said the two knew they were stonewalling lawmakers regarding the Hillary Clinton email investigation.
Discussing the tests on his radio program, â€œJay Live,â€ Sekulow also said the texts revealed that the two understood the hidden FBI reports would eventually be revealed in Freedom of Information Act requests and â€œabsolutely inflame Congress.â€
The two anti-Trump officials admitted to hiding â€œ302 reportsâ€ â€” which are summaries of interviews conducted with witnesses and/or suspects â€” from lawmakers regarding Clintonâ€™s criminal mishandling of classified emails.
Also, both then complained that FOIA requests from interested parties would eventually cause the hidden reports to be released, thus created widespread angst and condemnation in Congress.