Bruce Ohr, the demoted Department of Justice official who provided information to the FBI for the anti-Trump “dossier,” did not disclose to the bureau that the opposition-research firm that produced the dossier was paying his wife, according to newly obtained government documents.
The Daily Caller News Foundation reports the documents show that Ohr also failed to obtain a conflict of interest waiver from his Justice Department superiors.
Ohr’s wife, Nellie Ohr, a former CIA employee with expertise on Russia, was working with the research firm, Fusion GPS, when it was hired by the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign to dig up dirt on Trump, then the Republican nominee.
Bruce Ohr provided his wife’s information to Christopher Steele, the former British spy who wrote the dossier.
The Daily Caller said Ohr’s omission may explain why he was demoted from his post as associate deputy attorney general, noting that willfully “falsifying government ethics forms can carry a penalty of jail time, if convicted.”
The DOJ and the FBI used the dossier to obtain a warrant from a top-secret intelligence court to spy on a Trump campaign adviser. The Daily Caller pointed out the officials didn’t disclose to the judge that the Democratic Party funded the document and that Ohr had a financial relationship with the firm that produced it.
Ohr apparently didn’t disclose that information to his supervisors either, the Daily Caller said.
Ohr submitted ethics forms in which he described his wife as an “independent contractor.” Later, in 2016, he said she was being paid a “salary” as a “cyberthreat analyst.” But Ohr did not name the company, Fusion GPS, which long has been linked to Democratic Party causes.
The ethics reports are used to identify possible conflicts of interest.
A Washington public policy lawyer, Paul Kamenar, told the DC that Bruce Ohr’s failure to disclose the name of his wife’s employer could have criminal consequences.
“The law provides that whoever ‘knowingly and willfully’ fails to file information required to be filed on this report faces civil penalties up to $50,000 and possible criminal penalties up to one year in prison under the disclosure law and possibly up to five years in prison under 18 USC 1001,” he said.
He noted the income was listed as salary, making it clear she was employed by a specific employer, rather than just being a consultant being paid various fees.
The documentation indicates Ohr never obtained a conflict of interest waiver, suggesting he probably didn’t let his supervisors know his wife was being paid by Fusion GPS.
Ohr was demoted from his DOJ position when the founder of GPS admitted to the House Intelligence Committee he had met with the DOJ executive.
The London Daily Mail reported Ohr also worked closely with former assistant Attorney General Sally Yates and current deputy Rod Rosenstein.
The memo released by Republican majority on the House Intelligence Committee said the dossier author, Steele, told Ohr that he was “desperate” that Trump lose the election.
Ohr was demoted from his post with the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force after news broke of his involvement with Fusion GPS.
WND reported last week Judicial Watch went to court to obtain documentation about the what it describes as possibly “the worst government abuse scandal in a generation.”
Judicial Watch said there’s a compelling case that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA, court “was misled and severely abused by top officials in the Justice Department and FBI.”
“Rather than relying upon dueling summary memos from Republicans and Democrats, the American people should be able to see for themselves the details of how the Obama administration officials (and Rod Rosenstein of the Trump administration) justified spying on the Trump team,” the watchdog group said.