Hide And Seek: DOJ Fought To Keep Monitoring Of Fox News Reporter Secret

Ryan Lizza at the New Yorker, who’s been doing some great reporting on the government’s monitoring of Fox News’ James Rosen, has a new bombshell development that nicely compliments Holder’s alleged perjury: the DOJ tried to keep the search secret.  Lizza wrote today that the Obama administration argued that the warrant be kept secret since they would need to monitor Rosen’s private emails for an extended period of time.


The new details are revealed in a court filing detailing a back and forth between the Justice Department and the federal judges who oversaw the request to search a Gmail account belonging to Rosen, a reporter for Fox News. A 2009 articleRosen had written about North Korea sparked an investigation; Ronald C. Machen, Jr., the U.S. Attorney who is prosecuting Stephen Jin-Woo Kim, a former State Department adviser who allegedly leaked classified information to Rosen, insisted that the reporter should not be notified of the search and seizure of his e-mails, even after a lengthy delay.


Machen insisted the investigation would be compromised if Rosen was informed of the warrant, and also asked the court to order Google not to notify Rosen that the company had handed over Rosen’s e-mails to the government. Rosen, according to recent reports, did not learn that the government seized his e-mail records until it was reported in the Washington Post last week.

According to Lizza, Machen noted that emails “are commonly used by subjects or targets of the criminal investigation at issue, and the e-mail evidence derived from those compelled disclosures frequently forms the core of the Government’s evidence supporting criminal charges.”  If such an investigation were to be “disclosed,” Machen argued, it would prevent government from “monitoring the account,” if it were considered to be necessary.


Additionally, the search warrant not only included Rosen’s emails, but his:

…correspondence with Kim,[as] the government wanted to know about Rosen’s contacts with other government officials, including “records or information relating to the Author’s communication with any other source or potential source of the information disclosed in the Article.”

…[A]mong other things, the search warrant requested access to:

—“Records or information related to Stephen Kim’s or the Author’s knowledge of laws, regulations, rules and/or procedures prohibiting the unauthorized disclosure of national defense or classified information.”

—“Any classified document, image, record, or information, and any communications concerning such documents, images, records, or information.”

—“Any document, image, record, or information concerning the national defense, including but not limited to documents, maps, plans, diagrams, guides, manuals, and other Department of Defense, U.S. military, and/or weapons material, as well as sources and methods of intelligence gathering, and any communications concerning such documents, images, records, or information.”

—“Records or information related to the state of mind of any individuals seeking the disclosure or receipt of classified, intelligence and/or national defense information.”


Keeping Rosen in the dark wasn’t popular with everyone. Lizza noted that two judges ordered the DOJ inform Rosen of the search, but Machen appealed those decisions in 2010 with Royce C. Lamberth, the chief judge in the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia,who granted his request to keep the investigation secret – and overturn the two previous rulings about investigation.  It was also revealed yesterday that Attorney General Eric Holder personally signed off on this monitoring of Rosen.

This just keeps getting worse by the day.


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