A FBI official says the bureau is not working to collect messages between anti-Trump FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, despite the request to do so from a top Republican senator as well as evidence suggesting they communicated about “work-related” matters on non-FBI accounts.
In a letter this week to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, Charles Thorley, the acting assistant director of the FBI’s office of congressional affairs, said FBI employees are “required to adhere to record keeping policies in place where communications constitute records under the Federal Records Act.”
But Thorley said “the FBI is not otherwise obligated to collect and/or retain all communications between its employees.”
“Thus, the FBI has not requested from Ms. Page or Mr. Strzok any information from their personal email accounts, nor as the FBI conducted searches of non-FBI-issued communications devices or non-FBI email accounts associated with Mr. Strzok or Ms. Page,” he said.
In a Friday letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray obtained by Fox News, Grassley encouraged the bureau to obtain the messages.
“The work-related communications on nongovernment systems could shed more light on how the FBI handled the Clinton investigation and would constitute federal records that the FBI would be obligated to retrieve and preserve under the Federal Records Act,” Grassley said.
The Justice Department last week released a series of redacted Strzok-Page text messages to congressional committees. The messages show the FBI officials repeatedly referring to personal accounts, like “gmail” and “imsg” — short for the text message system on iPhones, iMessage.