US Justice Department declines to investigate CIA

The Justice Department has declined to pursue claims by the Senate Intelligence Committee, which had accused the CIA of criminal behavior related to the committee’s investigation of the agency’s interrogation practices, the department said on Thursday.
“The department carefully reviewed the matters referred to us and did not find sufficient evidence to warrant a criminal investigation,” a spokesman, Peter Carr, said in a written statement.
The claims were part of a bitter dispute between the C.I.A. and its congressional overseers over a classified report compiled by the committee that is said to be sharply critical of the agency’s detention and interrogation practices during the George W. Bush administration.
In March, the Intelligence Committee chairwoman, Dianne Feinstein of California, publicly accused the C.I.A. of monitoring computers used by committee staff members to complete the report.
At a news conference at the time, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. seemed to signal his reluctance to become involved in the dispute. He said that the department receives many criminal referrals and often declines to investigate them. “At this point I’d say that’s all we’re doing: looking at referrals,” he said.
People who have read the report say it offers the most detailed look to date on the C.I.A.’s brutal methods of interrogating terrorism suspects in the years after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. It concludes that the spy agency repeatedly misled Congress, the White House and the public about the benefits of the program, under which more than 100 detainees were interrogated.
The Intelligence Committee voted in April to declassify about 500 pages of the
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7/11/14 8:23 AMJustice Dept. Declines to Investigate C.I.A. Review –…
6,200-page report, including the executive summary and conclusions. The C.I.A. has recommended redactions of the declassified report for sensitive national security disclosures, and it awaits approval by the White House before its release, said Caitlin Hayden, a spokeswoman for the National Security Council.
Mr. Obama, who opposed the C.I.A. program as a presidential candidate and discontinued it once he took office in 2009, has said he wants the findings made public.
The C.I.A. had accused Intelligence Committee staff members of gaining unauthorized access to parts of the agency’s computer system to obtain an internal C.I.A. report about the interrogation program, and later removing the internal report from the C.I.A. facility where they were working.
A C.I.A. spokesman, Dean Boyd, said the agency had no comment on the Justice Department’s decision, which was reported earlier by McClatchy Newspapers.

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