Wednesday 15 November 2023

FBI Raids Home Of Bureau Whistleblower Suspected Of Mishandling Classified Documents

 Federal authorities on Monday reportedly raided the California home of one of the FBI’s own special agents — who alleged Russian intelligence agents may have “compromised” Rudy Giuliani while he was working as the lawyer for former President Donald Trump.

A search warrant — reported on by Business Insider — states that authorities searched the Orange County home of FBI Special Agent Jonathan Buma on suspicion that he violated federal laws against mishandling classified information. A receipt for property seized under the search warrant reportedly included “classified material” and “possible classified material” among the confiscated items.

Scott Horton, an attorney for Buma, denied the allegations and the property receipt as false. He said authorities seized computers and other items at the residence. Business Insider reported the property listed included nine laptops, three smartwatches, six tablets, two phones, and one desktop computer — most of which Horton said belonged to Buma’s wife and their children.

“There was no classified information found by the raid,” he said. “I know that from talking to my client.”

Horton said authorities discovered his client’s unclassified whistleblower complaint.

Buma, a 15-year FBI agent specializing in counter-intelligence investigations, filed protected whistleblower disclosures in July to the Senate Judiciary Committee, claiming bureau mismanagement and retaliation.

He alleged the agency ordered him not to investigate Trump’s associates and shut down his most valuable confidential human sources. The 22-page disclosure also indicated Giuliani had been compromised by Russian intelligence as part of an attempt to help Trump by discrediting President Joe Biden.

Newsweek reported that Buma said in his letter to Senate lawmakers that anonymous people within the bureau targeted him with retaliation by assigning him to “surveillance missions” unrelated to his post after he discovered an alleged relationship between Giuliani and Russian intelligence.

“I do not fully understand why I have been singled out for this treatment nor who exactly is driving it,” Buma wrote. “But my strong suspicion is that one or more of my sources provided truthful, accurate information that is harmful to a person or persons that higher ups in the Bureau are trying to shield.”

Horton said the raid was “designed to be in retaliation for the whistleblower complaints” and called the bureau’s search “very heavy harassment.”

“They deployed the level of personnel that would be customary for a major mafia figure for a single active-duty FBI agent suspected of having cooperated with a congressional investigation,” Horton told Business Insider. “That is his offense. This continues to raise grave concerns about how the bureau’s counter-intelligence activities targeting the Russian intelligence services are undermined by political shenanigans on the part of senior bureau management.”

The FBI has not issued a public comment and has reportedly previously declined to comment on Buma’s allegations.

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