No criminality in Clinton emails – FBI

No criminality in Clinton emails – FBI

The FBI has found no evidence of criminality in the new batch of Hillary Clinton emails.

In a letter to members of Congress, FBI director James Comey said the agency had finished its review and found nothing to change its position.

In July, he said Mrs Clinton had been careless but not criminal in handling sensitive material on her private email server while secretary of state.

The issue flared up again with the discovery of new “pertinent” emails.

They were reportedly found on the laptop of Anthony Weiner, the estranged husband of one of the Democratic presidential candidate’s closest advisers.

Mr Comey’s original letter late last month to lawmakers, revealing the bureau’s inquiry into Mrs Clinton’s emails had been revived, shook up the White House race and reinvigorated the campaign of Republican nominee Donald Trump.

Analysis – Anthony Zurcher, BBC News, Washington

It was much ado about nothing, but it certainly amounted to something. While FBI Director James Comey, in effect, said “never mind” with regards to Hillary Clinton’s emails, for the past two weeks the story has dominated the political conversation, and Democrats have paid a price.

While Mrs Clinton’s presidential hopes have stabilised, talk of a possible rout – and sweeping down-ballot victories in congressional races – are a distant memory.

Mrs Clinton will now try to focus on her closing campaign message. Donald Trump almost certainly will continue to accuse his opponent of corruption and, perhaps, again allege the FBI is covering for her.

With only two days until voting, the dust kicked up by this story won’t have fully settled by the time Americans head to the polls.

Once this election is over, there should be serious soul-searching within the FBI and the media about how this saga played out. The nation’s top law-enforcement agency was a source of constant leaks, as internal disputes spilled into public view.

If Mr Trump wins, many on the left will blame Mr Comey for the result. If Mrs Clinton prevails, she likely will bear a lasting grudge over this political near-miss.

The FBI director had announced that the agency would investigate if the newly discovered messages contained classified information.

But in Sunday’s follow-up letter, Mr Comey wrote: “Since my letter, the FBI investigative team has been working around the clock to process and review a large volume of emails from a device obtained in connection with an unrelated criminal investigation.

“During that process, we reviewed all of the communications that were to or from Hillary Clinton while she was Secretary of State.

“Based on our review, we have not changed our conclusions that we expressed in July with respect to Secretary Clinton.”

Source: BBC