Hillary Clinton’s aides may have obstructed justice by having her emails deleted, the top investigator for the U.S. House charged Tuesday in a letter asking the federal prosecutor in Washington, D.C., to probe the matter.
The computer team Mrs. Clinton hired erased tens of thousands of her emails, even though they were subject to a subpoena and preservation order from Congress, according to the FBI’s investigative notes, some of which were released last week.
The mass-deletion came just days after Platte River Networks, the company Mrs. Clinton hired to handle her server, had a conference call with Mrs. Clinton’s lawyers, who had been in charge of going through the emails, said Rep. Jason Chaffetz, chairman of the House Oversight Committee.
Mr. Chaffetz said that timeline deserves a followup investigation.
“In light of this information, the Department should investigate and determine whether Secretary Clinton or her employees and contractors violated statutes that prohibit destruction of records, obstruction of congressional inquiries, and concealment or cover up of evidence material to a congressional investigation,” he wrote to the U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia.
The timeline on Mrs. Clinton’s emails continues to raise more questions about her behavior.
She used a secret email account tied to a server she kept at her home in New York for all of her State Department email business, including handling classified messages, and she did not turn over the documents when she left the department in early 2013, as required by law.
After prodding by Congress, she belatedly had her lawyers review subject lines and conduct word searches to sort through her emails, and decided some 30,000 were personal, while 32,000 others were work-related.
She turned the work-related ones over to the government in December 2014.
News of her secret account became public in a New York Times story in early March, and weeks later her aides went back and erased the messages she deemed private.
Since then, the FBI has 17,448 messages Mrs. Clinton exchanged during her time in office that she didn’t turn over, and deemed thousands of them to be work-related.
The Platte River employee who wiped Mrs. Clinton’s server refused to answer the FBI’s questions about his communications with Mrs. Clinton’s lawyers.
Platte River didn’t respond to a request for comment Tuesday from The Washington Times.
Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, the ranking Democrat on the Oversight Committee, said Mr. Chaffetz was overstating the case against Mrs. Clinton.
“Unfortunately this is the latest misguided attempt to use taxpayer funds to help the Republican nominee, Donald Trump, and to essentially re-do what the FBI has already investigated because Republicans disagree with the outcome for political reasons,” Mr. Cummings said.