The Justice Department has decided not to bring charges against former FBI Director James Comey for leaking memos he wrote documenting 2017 conversations he had with President Trump, multiple outlets reported Thursday.
After he was fired by Trump, Comey passed along one of the memos to a friend with the understanding that the friend would relay its contents — about a conversation Comey had with Trump about former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn — to the media. Special counsel Robert Mueller was appointed a days after the memo was first reported.
Inspector General Michael Horowitz has been investigating Comey’s conduct and referred the matter of the leaked memos to the Justice Department for potential charges.
DOJ prosecutors, according to the reports, determined that the conduct didn’t warrant prosecution, with one official telling Fox News, “Everyone at the DOJ involved in the decision said it wasn’t a close call.”
The memos in question were designated classified only after the transmission was under way, Fox New reported, and they were classified as “confidential,” the lowest rank among the different types of classifications.
It is not typical for the Department to bring charges for the mishandling of confidential material, according to the New York Times.
The Department’s decision not to charge Comey was first reported Wednesday evening by John Solomon, an opinion columnist for the Hill.