Ex-Trump campaign adviser Carter Page sues FBI, Comey, McCabe and others for $75M over Russia probe surveillance – USA TODAY

Ex-Trump campaign adviser Carter Page sues FBI, Comey, McCabe and others for $75M over Russia probe surveillance – USA TODAY

Sarah Elbeshbishi

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Former Trump campaign associate Carter Page filed a $75 million federal lawsuit against the Department of Justice and the FBI in Washinton on Friday.

The lawsuit seeks relief for “multiple violations” of Page’s “Constitutional and other legal rights in connection with unlawful surveillance and investigation of him by the United States Government.”

Page claims to have been targeted by the FBI because of his work with President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.

The complaints made in the lawsuit refers to four warrant applications by the FBI to electronically survey Page, which the document calls “false and misleading.”

Earlier this year, the Justice Department recognized that it had “insufficient” cause to continue their wiretaps of Page, which was a part of their investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election. The department also found that at least two of the four warrants used to survey Page lacked “probable cause” to support the allegation that Page was working as a Russian agent.

Last year, a report released by Michael Horowitz, the Justice Department inspector general, found inaccuracies in multiple surveillance applications, exaggerating the justification for monitoring Page. Despite the identified inaccuracies, Horowitz determined that the FBI was justified in launching its investigation into the Kremlin’s interference effort. 

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Page also accuses the FBI of extensively relying on information and documents from Christopher Steele, a former British spy.

The lawsuit states that the FBI relied on Steele while knowing he “had been paid by the Democratic Party and/or the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign to perform ‘political opposition research’ and dig up dirt on a connection between the Trump campaign and Russia in order to divert attention from the investigation of Clinton’s email practices while she was Secretary of State.”

And Page’s complaint accuses the FBI of denying his relationship with the CIA in order to get the warrants.

Page was an “operational contact” between 2008 and 2013, assisting the CIA in “combatting intelligence-related activities pursued by Russia and other foreign countries against the United States’ interest,” according to the lawsuit.  

In August, former FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith pleaded guilty to falsifying a government email, saying that Page hadn’t been a CIA source.

In addition to the FBI and the Department of Justice, Page’s lawsuit also names former FBI Director James Comey, former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, Clinesmith and other officials as defendants.   

More: President Trump pardons ex-national security adviser Michael Flynn; ends three-year legal odyssey

Contributing: The Associated Press

Published at Sat, 28 Nov 2020 23:54:42 +0000

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