Conservative watch group, Judicial Watch, announced that they are planning to sue the FBI, NSA, and CIA if they do not hand over the records related to the wiretapping of Michael Flynn.
The group, whose tagline reads “No One is Above The Law”, filed Freedom of Information Act papers for those records weeks ago, and receiving no response, are planning to sue in order to get those records, possibly as early as next week.
“If you have a warrant, attached to the warrant 99 percent of the time, there is an affidavit, a sworn declaration normally by a law enforcement officer or senior official,” said Farrell. Depending on the case, the affidavit might be classified, according to Farrell.
A wiretapped phone call between Flynn and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak was leaked to the Washington Post and revealed in a Feb. 9 story.
The leak, which took place in December, contradicted public assertions by Vice President Michael Pence that Flynn had never discussed sanctions with Kislyak, and led to Flynn’s eventual resignation on Monday.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) highlighted this week that such wiretapping would only be legal if intelligence agencies obtained a warrant or happened upon the conversation while investigating a foreign official.
Nunes speculated that “it’s pretty clear” that there was no warrant.
“It’s pretty clear that’s not the case,” he said. “I’m pretty sure the FBI didn’t have a warrant on Michael Flynn … To listen to an American’s phone call you would have to go to a court, there’d be all that paperwork there. So I’m guessing that doesn’t exist.”
Nunes said even if it was inadvertent, there is a process that masks the American’s identity.
“And if you were going to unmask it, it seems like you would immediately go get a warrant,” he said.
Farrell, a former Army counterintelligence officer and adjunct professor at George Mason University, said that a warrant would only be requested or granted if the agents in question suspected Flynn of criminal activity.
The Trump administration has denied that Flynn broke any law.
Both Nunes and Farrell said the leaking of the phone call is illegal and harmful to national security.