Donald Trump (Photo: Getty Images)
The US Department of Justice seized from Apple during Donald Trump’s presidency data from two Democratic parliamentarians concerning the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee as well as their collaborators and members of their families, according to the report. New York Times.
Summons to obtain the communication of these data targeted Adam Schiff, representative of California and at the time the main Democratic member of this commission which he currently chairs, reported Thursday the American daily.
The seizures came in 2017 and early 2018, as the department investigated leaks of classified information about contacts between the Trump administration and the Russian government, the newspaper continued.
Representative Eric Swalwell told CNN on Thursday that he was the second Democratic representative on the commission targeted. “I was notified (…) by Apple that they had entered my data. It’s wrong, ”he said.
According to New York Times, prosecutors in the Justice Department then headed by Jeff Sessions made unusual efforts to find the source of the leaks.
They targeted the data of parliamentarians as well as their staff and families, including a minor, because, according to the newspaper, they believed they were using the devices of their collaborators or children to mask contacts with journalists.
Finally, none of the data collected or other evidence allowed to link the parliamentarians or the intelligence committee to these leaks, specifies the daily. But the investigation was restarted a year later by Justice Secretary Bill Barr.
The Justice Department and Apple have yet to comment on this information.
Instrumentalisation of the law
Such data entry is rare outside of corruption investigations.
Mr. Schiff, without confirming that he was the target of the investigation, called for investigations by the Inspector General of the Department of Justice on “this and other cases which suggest an instrumentalization of law enforcement by a president corrupt”.
Mr. Trump “tried to use the department as a baton against his political opponents and members of the media,” Schiff said in a statement. “It is increasingly clear that these requests have not fallen on deaf ears.”
Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Speaker of the House of Representatives, also called for investigations, calling the article in the House “appalling”. New York Times in a press release. For her, “these actions seem to be a new flagrant assault on our democracy launched by the former president”.
The Justice Department had imposed a nondisclosure directive on Apple, which expired this year, and lawmakers were not aware of the investigations until the IT group notified them last month, according to the New York Times.
Adam Schiff, who had carried the file of the first file in the impeachment of Donald Trump at the end of 2019-beginning of 2020, fights for a long time the former Republican president, a “dangerous” man according to him.
After two impeachment trials and his electoral failure for a second term, Mr. Trump returned to the stage last week with his first televised speech in months. The former president, who left the White House on January 20, once again touched on the idea of a candidacy in 2024.
The House of Representatives voted for the first time an impeachment procedure in 2019 against him for asking Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden’s son. The Senate acquitted him in February 2020.
Mr Trump was the subject of a second impeachment proceeding in January, accused of encouraging his supporters to storm the Capitol on January 6 as congressional officials certify the victory of his Democratic rival Joe Biden for the presidential election. In February, the Senate acquitted him again.