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Besides 22 Wiped Devices, 44 Mueller Team iPhones Had Zero Records

Posted on Friday, September 18, 2020
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by Outside Contributor
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75 Comments
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Forty-four iPhones used by members of Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation contained no records when they were examined by an office assigned to the team, according to internal documents.

Five more Special Counsel’s Office (SCO) phones contained only one record each, and four others contained fewer than 10 records per device, according to a log kept by a records officer over the course of more than 20 months.

The lack of records on the phones is extraordinary given the immense scope of the probe. It is also suspicious considering that at least 22 phones belonging to members of the Mueller team were wiped, with employees offering questionable explanations for the erasures.

Under U.S. law, government records are defined as “all recorded information, regardless of form or characteristics, made or received by a federal agency under federal law or in connection with the transaction of public business  and preserved or appropriate for preservation by that agency or its legitimate successor as evidence of the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the United States government or because of the informational value of data in them.”

Of the 92 unique iPhones used by the Mueller team, only 12 contained a significant number of records, an Epoch Times review of available records determined.

Two well-known members of the Mueller team, FBI attorney Lisa Page and Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok mentioned sending and clearing iMessages from their SCO iPhones on more than one occasion.

“Clear imsg …” Strzok wrote to Page on June 5, 2017, and again on June 8.

Apple’s iMessage service utilizes the internet data network to send messages that bypass the cellular carrier’s text message service. As a result, when the SCO asked Verizon to check how many text messages Strzok and Page sent during their tenure on the Mueller team, Verizon said that none were sent, but noted that data did leave the device.

The records officer, who isn’t identified in the documents, noted that Strzok’s phone contained “no substantive texts, notes or reminders.” Page’s phone went missing under questionable circumstances after she left the Mueller team. When it was recovered more than a year later, the device was already wiped.

The Department of Justice (DOJ), of which the SCO was a part, is bound by laws and regulations to preserve records and prevent them from being destroyed.

The DOJ’s “Records Management” page notably contains a statutory definition of what a record is that has been outdated since late 2014, when the relevant legislation was amended by Congress. The page also incorrectly attributes the definition to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). The outdated language came from Congress.

The DOJ didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

The iPhones that had no records belonged to some of the key members of the special counsel team, including Mueller himself, deputy special counsel Aaron Zebley, FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith, and Andrew Weissman.

Clinesmith pleaded guilty in August to one false statement charge in connection to an email he forged while serving as the primary FBI attorney assigned to the SCO. He edited the email as part of the process for preparing a secret-court application for a warrant to surveil a former Trump campaign adviser.

Clinesmith, Page, and Strzok were among a group of officials who worked on the investigation of the Trump campaign and expressed intense bias against Trump. Strzok, who maintained an extramarital relationship with Page, spoke of stopping Trump from becoming president, mentioned an “insurance policy” in the unlikely case Trump won the election, and mused about impeachment around the time he joined Mueller’s team.

“I am so stressed about what I could have done differently,” Clinesmith wrote to his FBI colleague Sally Moyer on the day after Trump’s victory in November 2016. “I’m just devastated.”

“Plus, my [expletive] name is all over the legal documents investigating his staff,” he wrote a few messages later.

Messages from the trio offered the public an extraordinary glimpse into the nature of the investigation and now raise questions about why more than dozens of other Mueller team phones turned up with no records.

The records officer assigned to the Mueller team reviewed some of the phones more than once. As a result, some of the phones were recorded as having no records at one point and as having been wiped on another occasion. For purposes of clarity, such phones were counted toward the 22 which were wiped and not part of the 42 which had no records.

Some of the phones, such as the one belonging to Strzok, were reviewed for records as part of the exit procedure, wiped, and reassigned to another SCO member. Four of these reassigned phones also had no records when they were checked after being used by a new employee. One of the reassigned phones had one record.

Thirteen of the phones that were logged as having three or fewer records were each also wiped on separate occasions.

For example, the phone belonging to Weissmann, who has been described as the architect of the case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, contained no records when it was reviewed on March 28, 2019. Prior to that, Weissmann wiped his phone twice, in March and September 2018, claiming he erased it by accident on one occasion and by entering the wrong password too many times on another.

Members of Mueller’s team offered similar explanations to Weissmann’s for wiping their phones. At least two told the records officer that their phones wiped themselves.

In addition to the 22 wiped iPhones, five phones were improperly handed to the DOJ Office of Chief Information Officer and wiped before the SCO records officer could review them for records, according to the documents.

Mueller took over the FBI’s investigation of the Trump campaign in May 2017. The special counsel operated with Trump in the White House and with the near-certain prospect that each employee’s actions would eventually be reviewed either by the Congress or the DOJ Office of Inspector General (OIG). The OIG was in regular contact with the SCO beginning less than a month after Mueller’s appointment and throughout 2018, documents show.

The IG interviewed SCO staff in 2018 as it searched for Page’s missing iPhone. With the exception of Strzok’s phone, all of the phones that were logged as having no records were reviewed after the IG contacted the SCO about Page’s phone in late January 2018.

Trump, who has repeatedly denounced the Mueller investigation as a hoax, responded to news of the wiped phones on Twitter.

“It has now been determined that the Mueller Scam should never have been set up in the first place, there were no grounds,” the president wrote. “It was all an illegitimate Witch Hunt, & a big price must be paid. How different my life would have been if this fraud on America was never committed!!!”

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) wrote letters to the FBI and DOJ requesting more information on the deleted phones. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) asked the IG to open a probe into the matter.

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Stephen Russell
Stephen Russell
3 years ago

Clear
Conspiracy
Cover up
Deep State
& we lose

Shoe
Shoe
3 years ago

As long as the main stream media refuses to cover such abuses, the traitors doing them will continue. You cannot change this behavior when the media is a co-conspirator in destroying the Republic and replacing it with a socialist system

Morty Tupperman
Morty Tupperman
3 years ago

Like Gomer Pyle said, “SURPRISE, SURPRISE, SURPRISE!!”

GunRunner
GunRunner
3 years ago

Hummm, something is amiss, me thinks… Just one more example of Liberal Progressive Socialist (Democrat) collusion in the major effort to negate President Trump… More than sick of this crap! TRUMP 2020! MAGA! AG! CTF!

Josephine pooley
Josephine pooley
3 years ago

Hmmmm…something is rotten!

David Spade
David Spade
3 years ago

Just keep on violating rules regulations, and laws….it will never end. These people have no shame or conscious. It is so sad that the American public has to endure this any longer.

Annie Maus
Annie Maus
3 years ago

Before I retired, I worked for the FL Dept of Corrections & performed pre-sentence & post-sentence investigations. Before then, I was a Deputy Sheriff in Colorado, so I do have investigative experience. The fact that both Strzok & Page displayed such open animus against President Trump & that former FBI Director STACKED his Hatchet Squad with Obama & Hillary Clinton supporters & contributors, makes me take their findings with a LOT of suspicion. The fact they admitted, in writing, that General Flynn “did not intend to deceive” the investigators makes me even more contemptuous of this Partisan Inquisitorial Body. Intent is ONE OF THE ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS of a crime. Without intent, there is no crime. I’m an Independent, former Democrat. I quit that Party in 1987 after becoming intimately acquainted with the Clintons and their methods, especially brother Roger, a dope dealer. I cringe every time I hear some ignorant Democrat talk about corruption, especially after the Clinton & Obama administrations.

Jan
Jan
3 years ago

All of these persons should be immediately fired for incompetence and they should lose their pensions. If they cannot enter their passwords correctly without wiping their phones, they are also not smart enough to be FBI personnel.

Fred J Noel
Fred J Noel
3 years ago

Let’s hope the cover up is more damaging and bring indictment, along with indictments for the original crimes that were committed. Did Muller investigate the Clinton campaign or the Clinton Foundation for Russian collusion. No, it wasn’t in his PREVIEW. REALLY! Can’t believe he said it out loud under oath. He was charged to investigate Russian collusion wasn’t he?

Richard Arveaux
Richard Arveaux
3 years ago

Why are the so-called investigators immune from prosecution. Is this another example of “What’s good for me, is not good for you/” Sounds like Nancy Piglosi all over again.

Enuf Said
Enuf Said
3 years ago

Mule-Er was just a pimp for Obozo and the other clowns that the Democraps constantly used. Either these people are dumb as hell or just plain STUPID– come to think of it– probably BOTH!! Democrap affiliated people have lied so much, that they will NEVER be able to recognize the truth AGAIN!!

Paul W
Paul W
3 years ago

18 U.S. Code § 1519.Destruction, alteration, or falsification of records in Federal investigations and bankruptcyWhoever knowingly alters, destroys, mutilates, conceals, covers up, falsifies, or makes a false entry in any record, document, or tangible object with the intent to impede, obstruct, or influence the investigation or proper administration of any matter within the jurisdiction of any department or agency of the United States or any case filed under title 11, or in relation to or contemplation of any such matter or case, shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

John C
John C
3 years ago

Do the crime and do the time! All the layers fully knew their actions were illegal ! Lets indict and go to trial. I want to be on that jury!!!!! I’m as unbiased as them but I say 30 years no probation, that would fully chill anyone thinking of insurrection against a sitting duly elected President and the People. Further would go far in cleaning up the most criminal political party in USA.

John DeGarmo
John DeGarmo
3 years ago

And Mueller is too busy to testify. Why? Changing his depends or trying to download directions to the Senate into his GPS or lookin for reservations into the local memory care unit???

Ed J
Ed J
3 years ago

Criminals most always try to cover their tracks to avoid detection and arrest, and the trials and incarceration that usually follow. Gee, how does this compare to the shenanigans of these miscreants who wiped their phones? The answer is self-evident. Hopefully, this widespread conspiracy and all their other unlawful actions will see the light of day, followed by indictments, trials and incarceration. If Trump wins reelection, indictments will follow. If Trump loses, everything will be swept under the rug and soon forgotten, compliments of the Demsheviks.

edgar fletcher
edgar fletcher
3 years ago

Until those in the deep state who are imbedded at all levels of government are weeded out, fired, and prosecuted, this lawlessness will continue. I’m not giving up on the American people, who have the power to elect honest officials to achieve honesty in government. It’s a daunting task, but America can do it.

Donn Jacquin
Donn Jacquin
3 years ago

Just following the Clinton Protocol…nothing to see here!!

carol
carol
3 years ago

None of this shocks me! From Hillary and her email server at her home when she was SOS and now this! This is a pattern for leftist, typical Mafia tactic. How is this country ever going to get past all this corruption if evidence continues to get destroyed and the media doesn’t care?

LauraC
LauraC
3 years ago

If nothing else, and there’s a lot else, this is simply gross incompetence and is deserving of firing and removal of any accrued benefits. If you or I did these things, we’d be in jail. Double standard? You betcha.

John Hunt
John Hunt
3 years ago

Isn’t that called “Tampering with Evidence”? That is a crime. Are any of these transgressions, crimes and misdemeanors ever going to be prosecuted or is this all a lip-service game?

Linda K
Linda K
3 years ago

How is destroying evidence not obstruction of justice?

David
David
3 years ago

Phones “wiped themselves”, “Accidentally wiped”? LMAO

I don’t buy that crap for a second! SMH
I’ve had many cell phones since the 1980’s, and NOT ONCE have ANY of them EVER been wiped of data, intentionally or unintentionally, until I transferred everything over to my new phone and was trading it in to the dealer.

R.J. from Arizona
R.J. from Arizona
3 years ago

An oath of office means nothing. Ones integrity means nothing. Pride in country means very little. Our Founding Father’s must be ready to vomit.

Joe McHugh
Joe McHugh
3 years ago

The Democrat oriented Mueller investigation team erased most of the records in their phones before turning them in. Now that the Department of Justice has determined that this activity took place, one would expect prosecutions for criminal behavior. OK, now let’s hold our breath until such prosecutions are initiated.

John A. Fallon
John A. Fallon
3 years ago

In all my fifty nine years of HARD WORK if I ever performed as badly as any of these socialist/dem politicians I would be FIRED immediately, they IGNORE the fact that they are employees of “WE THE PEOPLE” and it is “We” that need to fire them on NOVEMBER THREE and DEMAND the downsizing of bloated government, most gov. employees were hired by dems because they are loyal to the plantation party not because they were necessaraly the most qualified but simply a party member, this process needs to be stopped, government documents and job applications should have only two choices (1) AMERICAN (2)other and have space to explain, because we are in fact ALL AMERICANS. TRUMP2020 RED MAGA KAG!!!!!!

Chuck
Chuck
3 years ago

Obama’s cronies are performing according to standard. The standard bearer (Obama) is being well insulated. Did we expect justice was actually going to be served?

Dasing53
Dasing53
3 years ago

All of the people that wiped their phones, and still work for the Fed… Accedently wipe their employment records and tell them they DON’T work for the Fed and refuse to pay them and Bill them for the money the Fed did pay them!

Bill Brown
Bill Brown
3 years ago

Both the DemocRat Party and the National and International News Media belong to the One World Government/Communist Machine!! Turn them all OFF!!  Join the Trump Movement – The American Revolution Version 2!!!  Become a Counter-Revolutionary!!!  Stand-up for America!!!!  Remove Every DemocRat!!!!!

Bill Brown
Bill Brown
3 years ago

We are in the middle of a Communist Revolution lead by the Democrats, the Media, and “The Swamp”!!  Take back OUR Country!!!  Be a Counter-Revolutionary!!!  Remove Every Democrat!!!!!

William Douglas Hamilton
William Douglas Hamilton
3 years ago

Every bit of that information destroyed is official government records. There is no total priviledge here because the U.S. Government is the complainant. Lock all of them up. They’ve broken the law by their actions.

Bill Brown
Bill Brown
3 years ago

Antifa and BLM are guilty of murder and are trying to destroy our Government and make us a Communist Country!!  The Democrats and the Swamp are tied to the fundraising of both of these terrorist/Communist organizations!!!  Become a Counter-Revolutionary!!!  Stand-up for America!!!!  Remove Every DemocRat!!!!!

Bill Brown
Bill Brown
3 years ago

Winston Churchill: “The greatest proof against Democracy is a 5 minute conversation with the average voter.”  In America, the greatest proof against Democracy is that millions of average voters will vote for a Party that openly states that they will rise our taxes by 4 Trillion Dollars!!  Our founders’ greatest fear was “The Tyranny of the majority!!  Join the Trump Movement – The American Revolution Version 2!!!  Become a Counter-Revolutionary!!!  Stand-up for America!!!!  Remove Every DemocRat!!!!!

Pam
Pam
3 years ago

Are these criminals ever be brought to justice?? Come on Mr Attorney General, get it done!

Bill Brown
Bill Brown
3 years ago

You think you have not been brainwashed BUT you think Democracy can be a good thing?!  Understand, OUR Founders went to great lengths to ensure OUR Country would NEVER be a Democracy!!  John Adams: “There has never been a Democracy that did not commit suicide!!”  The term “limited Democracy” did not exist until after 1900, it is “Double Speak”!!  Our Founders greatest fear was the “Tyranny of the Majority”!!  Join the Trump Movement – The American Revolution Version 2!!!  Become a Counter-Revolutionary!!!  Stand-up for Our Republic!!!!  Remove Every DemocRat!!!!!

Bill Brown
Bill Brown
3 years ago

When the Communist “Reign of Terror” going-on now in DemocRat controlled cities becomes nationwide after a Trump/Pence Victory, we will not be able to avoid defending ourselves and our Country against the rioting and bloodshed!  We must be ready to “Take-up Arms and FIGHT!!”  Join the Trump Movement – The American Revolution Version 2!!!  Become a Counter-Revolutionary!!!  Stand-up for America!!!!  Remove Every DemocRat!!!!!

Bill Brown
Bill Brown
3 years ago

What is happening today is exactly why OUR Founders wrote and passed the 2nd Amendment!!  Join the Trump Movement – The American Revolution Version 2!!!  Become a Counter-Revolutionary!!!  Stand-up for Our Republic!!!!  Remove Every DemocRat!!!!!

mjl
mjl
3 years ago

It has to stop….I used my political donations this year..donating to only those Republican conservatives & President Trump that have a chance to stop this injustice. Everyone needs to vote Nov 3 IN PERSON for Trump and we have to be knowledgeable what local & state candidates stand for and vote accordingly.

‘Nonymous
‘Nonymous
3 years ago

As much as I’d like to believe the swamp is being drained, I guess I don’t see it happening. This report is one example. Many other examples exist yet the perpetrators go unchecked only to stick it to us again. Fauci is Trumps advisor, but hasn’t been right on anything he’s talked about!

Garye
Garye
3 years ago

The sad truth is 50% of the people either don’t care or aren’t smart enough to understand what the slimy anti Americans attempted.
What MUST occur is severe prosecution of these criminals.
It’s the only way Real Citizens will have confidence in these corrupted organizations.
obama, biden and their administration are by FAR the most dishonest, self serving group in history.

Ginger Lymbery
Ginger Lymbery
3 years ago

They must have called Clinton and asked her permission as she is still walking around a free woman when you and I would still be sitting in a jail cell for destroying evidence….but then again, the laws are made of us and not them. ALL of the people involved in the attempted coup of our government …. Comey, Clapper, Brennan, McCabe, Strutz, Page, Pelosi, Schumer Schift, Nada and everyone else who did ANYTHING to try to over throw the last election needs to be rounded up and indicted and tried for TREASON…

Dino Deplorable
Dino Deplorable
3 years ago

This is a dense oc RAT thing,just as most of the covid hype is.The dense oc RATS are going to play this”bull exhaust”out until our AMERICAN President gets elected for another term.But then the slugs will find another reason to turn AMERICA into a third world country.

Todd
Todd
3 years ago

Election year and every election vote RED (Remove-Every-Democrat).We the people need to fix this at the polling booth.

Kaye
Kaye
3 years ago

The question I keep asking and never getting an answer is how are all involved not being held accountable? Mueller should be made to pay back all the money he wasted on this witchhunt!! Guilty people need to be dealt with!! So why? Why do they keep getting away with this? Why are there no consequences? And why are these liars and abusers still in office? Why are Republicans raising hell about this? This just makes me crazy!! ?

sally Sweet
sally Sweet
3 years ago

Perfect analysis. No need for further explanation.

Jim
Jim
3 years ago

I think that we should release all non-violent criminals into a work release program and make room for those that would cause the most harm to our country and our way of life. God knows we would need a lot of jail cells or better yet dorm with bars. Hopefully the penalty for trying to overturn our government, or complicit in, would be enforced. We also need a constitutional convention to propose term limits. Like we do for the president. People don’t always make the right choices, so this would give them the opportunity to get it right the next time, not in 30 or 40 years.

BAE
BAE
3 years ago

Liberal progressive creeps really scare me. WHAT does the future hold? They must be held accountable…

Scott Berg
Scott Berg
3 years ago

I’ve said it from the beginning of all this insanity” every one of them other than looking for a job should all be in jail ‼️

Rick
Rick
3 years ago

I just want to see these people in handcuffs and headed for jail. The only reason for doing that is to hide what they had done and it just shows that it was more wide spread than originally thought. Quit talking and make some arrests and put these people away. Me and most of the people reading this would already be in jail, so why are they not???

The OLD Warhorse
The OLD Warhorse
3 years ago

Just try to imagine what would happen to you or me if we wiped our phone prior to an IRS audit. Think you would be walking around outside a maximum security prison???

Tim D.
Tim D.
3 years ago

Imagine that!

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