Coincidence? Republicans think not. On Friday, Congressional Republicans demanded answers as to whether or not there “was a widespread intentional effort” to wipe the mobile devices of some of Mueller’s team, completely clean. If so, it could amount to “anticipatory obstruction of justice” during the Russia probe, says the GOP.
Fox News reports that newly released records from the Justice Department indicate “at least several dozen phones belonging to members of Mueller’s team were wiped of information because of forgotten passcodes, irreparable screen damage, loss of the device, intentional deletion or other reasons” all, conveniently, “before the Justice Department inspector general’s office could review the devices.”
On Friday, Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley sent a letter to Attorney General Bill Barr and FBI Director Christopher Wray “pressing for details on what actions were taken to recover material deleted from the mobile devices assigned to Mueller’s team” reported Fox News. Grassley wrote “based on this new information, the number of times and the stated reasons for the deletions calls into question whether or not it was a widespread intentional effort.”
Referenced newly released Justice Department records “show that Mueller deputy Andrew Weissman ‘accidentally wiped’ his phone twice after entering the wrong passcode too many times in March 2018. Lawyer James Quarles’ phone ‘wiped itself’ without his intervention, the records say.” Additionally, records show attorney Greg Andres’ phone “was also wiped due to a forgotten passcode. And they say the phones of both Mueller deputy Kyle Freeny and Rush Atkinson were wiped accidentally after they entered the wrong passcode too many times.”
As House Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes (R-CA) said, “it’s an amazing coincidence that all these professional investigators kept accidentally wiping their phones…You’d think these people could come up with a more believable excuse for hiding evidence.”