This post has been updated.
The Justice Department will not investigate claims that the CIA improperly searched Senate Intelligence Committee computers, McClatchy reported.
“The department carefully reviewed the matters referred to us and did not find sufficient evidence to warrant a criminal investigation,” Justice Department spokesman Peter Carr told McClatchy.
Intelligence Committee Chair Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) in March alleged that the CIA of hacked into the Senate computer network during the committee’s investigation into the CIA’s torture practices under the Bush administration.
She said that the CIA Inspector General referred the matter to the Justice Department “given the possibility of a criminal violation by CIA personnel.”
CIA Director John Brennan called Feinstein’s claim “beyond the scope of reason.”
But Feinstein would not back away from the accusation after her initial speech railing against the CIA.
“The speech was carefully put together. I believe it’s accurate. And I believe those words should stand,” she said on CNN.
The DOJ also declined to investigate the CIA’s accusation that Senate staffers took classified documents out of a secure CIA facility.
On Thursday, Feinstein said she supported the Justice Department’s decision not to probe the Intelligence Committee.
“I am pleased the Justice Department has decided not to open an investigation into Intelligence Committee staff. I believe this is the right decision and will allow the committee to focus on the upcoming release of its report on the CIA detention and interrogation program,” Feinstein said in a statement.
Senators on Thursday stood by Feinstein’s initial concerns and allegations that the CIA conducted an improper search after the DOJ confirmed it would not investigate.
Reid. “I think what the CIA did to my senators was wrong” but doesn’t criticize DOJ declining to probe CIA searching Sen computers.
— Todd Zwillich (@toddzwillich) July 10, 2014
As DOJ says they won’t wade into CIA/Senate spat, Sen. Mark Udall says: “We shouldn’t let this drop.” He says Senate needs to take a stand.
— Jeff Zeleny (@jeffzeleny) July 10, 2014
TPM has reached out to Feinstein’s office for comment.