“I have seen apparent proof that the United States Department of Justice (DOJ), Criminal Division, is working with United Kingdom police to pursue the leaker of the 2009 and 2011 “Climategate” emails,” write Chris Horner in the Washington Examiner.
I have learned that last week DOJ sent a search-and-seizure letter to the host of three climate-change “skeptic” blogs. Last night, UK police raided a blogger’s home and removed computers and equipment.
The leaked records derailed “cap-and-trade” legislation in the U.S. and, internationally, as well as talks for a successor to the Kyoto Protocol. The emails and computer code were produced with taxpayer funds and held on taxpayer-owned computers both in the US and the UK, and all were subject to the UK Freedom of Information Act, the U.S. Freedom of Information Act and state FOIA laws.
They also were being unlawfully withheld in both the UK (by the University of East Anglia) and the U.S. (Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), including stonewalling me for two years, and three other requesters for longer).
The hunt involving U.S. and UK law enforcement agencies is now escalating. On Wednesday night UK time, six detectives with the UK police (Norfolk Police Department) raided the home of at least one blogger, removing his equipment to look for clues to the identity of leaker “FOIA 2011.”
On December 9, DOJ sent a preservation letter under 18 U.S.C 2703(f) to the publication platform (website host) WordPress. This authority authorizes the government to request an Internet Service Provider (ISP) to preserve all records of a specific account for 90 days while the feds work on a warrant.
Norfolk PD affirmed to the subject of at least one of their raids that this international law enforcement hunt is for the leaker, meaning not for those whose acts the leaker exposed by making public emails containing admissions in their own words.
In the U.S., the academic and political Left have had fits about Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli exercising even more specific, anti-fraud authority to seek further records from University of Virginia in following up on indications from the first Climategate release of possible fraud against the taxpayer.
Apparently, that represented an abuse of the police power. No word yet if they are outraged by DOJ’s current foray or that of the UK raiding team.
The DOJ attorney sending the preservation letters, as it happens in this small world, a graduate of the University of Virginia (UVA). And UVA is also the subject of litigation a group I am associated with, the American Tradition Institute (ATI), that has filed suit on behalf of Virginia taxpayers seeking Climategate-related emails the school holds.
This is a case which has members of the Virginia faculty and establishment beside themselves and demanding an all-out effort to oppose production of the requested documents in an effort to wear us and Cuccinelli down.
So far UVA has spent upwards of $1 million fighting Cuccinelli’s request, and school officials continue to fight us in court every step of the way.
Clearly, this is no small matter in the quarters insisting that this taxpayer-financed information never see the light of day. Even the criminal legal apparatus of the U.S. and UK must be invoked against this threat, apparently.