FBI Report: Cheryl Mills Asked Hillary’s IT Guru About ‘Wiping Computer Data’

Chuck Ross Investigative Reporter
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Hillary Clinton’s State Department chief of staff, Cheryl Mills, asked Clinton’s email server technician, Bryan Pagliano, about “wiping computer data,” new FBI documents reveal.

According to notes released by the FBI on Friday, Pagliano also told investigators during his Dec. 22 interview that Mills, who now serves as Clinton’s attorney, dismissed concerns he raised in 2009 or 2010 about the then-secretary of state’s use of a personal email server.

The bombshell revelations comes just hours after news broke that the Justice Department granted Mills immunity in exchange for her cooperation with the FBI’s email probe.

Pagliano, who also received limited immunity, told the FBI that in Fall 2013, Mills called him “and inquired about the effectiveness of two types of software for wiping computer data.”

Former State Department staffer Bryan Pagliano arrives for a closed hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington

Former State Department staffer Bryan Pagliano arrives for a closed hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington Sept. 10, 2015. (REUTERS/Gary Cameron)

Pagliano, who began working at the State Department in May 2009, said he could not recall the two types of software but that he described the difference between “bit” wiping and deleting emails.

“Pagliano inferred from his conversation with Mills that [Platte River Networks] was going to excise data.”

Platte River Networks is the IT firm Clinton hired after she left the State Department in 2013 to manage her email server. Pagliano helped with transitioning the system.

Pagliano’s 2013 encounter with Mills was not the only one that portrays the Clinton insider in a negative light.

In late 2009 or early 2010, she dismissed Pagliano’s concerns that Clinton’s private email server violated the State Department’s federal records retention policy, he told FBI investigators.

Pagliano said that in Summer 2009, two information technology specialists at the State Department contacted him and asked him to come to the executive offices suite on the 7th floor of the State Department.

“Once there, Pagliano was asked if he was aware of the clintonemail.com domain and Pagliano replied in the affirmative,” reads the FBI report.

Pagliano said he recalled nothing further about the encounter. But he relayed the incident to individuals whose names are redacted in the report.

One of the people Pagliano told of the incident had a “‘visceral’ reaction and didn’t want to know anymore,” the report states.

“In late 2009 or early 2010, [redacted] reached out to Pagliano again and relayed to Pagliano that the use of a private email server by Hillary Clinton may be a federal records retention issue,” it continues.

That person said that he wanted to convey that information to Clinton’s inner circle but was not able to reach them. He asked Pagliano to do so.

“Pagliano then approached Cheryl Mills in her office and relayed [redacted’s] concerns regarding federal records retention and the use of a private email server.”

“Pagliano remembers Mills replying that former Secretary of State had done the same thing, to include Colin Powell.”

In a third conversation, the unidentified individual again brought up security concerns. He also “stated to Pagliano that he wouldn’t be surprised if classified information was being transmitted.”

Mills was asked about Pagliano’s statements during her own April 9 FBI interview.

“Mills may have had conversations with Bryan Pagliano concerning the Federal Records Act, but she was not sure,” the report reads.

“Mills met with Pagliano frequently. Mills did not recall any conversations with [redacted] concerning Clinton’s use of a private server and/or the Federal Records Act.”

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