Why is this important: The lawsuit largely echoes a report by the DOJ Inspector General that found errors in requests to acquire wiretaps on Page through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA, according to AP.
The context: Inspector General Michael Horowitz, who investigated the origins of the 2016 Russia inquiries, told a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in 2019 that he found no evidence of political bias in the FBI control of Trump administration officials, including Page.
- Horowitz also determined that the FBI was justified in opening its investigation after receiving advice on Trump’s campaign adviser George Papadopoulos.
- However, the Inspector General also found at least 17 errors in the FISA Page request, including the omission of information that could have refuted claims that he was a Russian agent.
The big picture: The lawsuit, filed Friday, accuses the FBI of relying excessively on information complied with Christopher Steele, a former British spy, and that the office failed to tell the Foreign Intelligence Review Court that the main source de Steele contradicted the information Steele attributed to him.
- The lawsuit also claims that the FBI misled the court about its relationship with the CIA.
- Kevin Clinesmith, a former FBI attorney, pleaded guilty in August to altering an email, claiming Page had not been a source for the CIA when he was. The email was used in an app to repeat a wiretap on the page.