It's been called the "dodgy dossier." Others have called it simply the "Trump dossier."
Regardless of what one calls it, Judicial Watch thinks the public should know exactly what was in the opposition research file on President Donald Trump, and what officials in the Department of Justice have been doing with it since Christopher Steele handed it over during the 2016 presidential campaign. After failing to receive a response to a March 8 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, the government watchdog group filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
Judicial Watch's FOIA request covers:
- All records of communications between any official, employee or representative of the FBI and Mr. Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence officer and the owner of the private firm Orbis Business Intelligence.
- All records related to the proposed, planned or actual payment of any funds to Mr. Steele and/or Orbis Business Intelligence.
- All records produced in preparation for, during or pursuant to any meetings or telephonic conversations between any official, employee or representative of the FBI and Mr. Christopher Steele and/or any employee or representative of Orbis Business Intelligence.
It is the fifth FOIA lawsuit (click here, here, here, and here to see the other four) the government watchdog group has filed related to the surveillance, unmasking and illegal leaking targeting President Trump and his associates. The dossier in question reportedly contained "embarrassing material" that could potentially be used to blackmail the president, but after BuzzFeed published much of the 35-page document, and CNN reported President Obama was presented classified documents alleging Russian Intelligence had "compromising personal and financial information" about then-candidate Trump, it appears that none of it may actually be true.
"The so-called Trump dossier is at the center of anti-Trump Russian collusion conspiracy theory," Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said. "It is disconcerting that the Obama FBI and Justice Department trafficked this document and evidently used it to justify unprecedented surveillance of the Trump team.
"Our new lawsuit seeks to expose the truth about this dossier. Maybe with new leadership at the FBI, we'll finally get some answers."
In the video clip above, Fitton explains the case and why Judicial Watch is suing for access to the documents.
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