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FISA Court Rebukes FBI's Surveillance of Trump Official

During and after the 2016 presidential election, the FBI obtained several surveillance warrants against Carter Page, an official on the Trump campaign. As substantiation for these surveillance warrants, the FBI used a document produced by Christopher Steele with financing from the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee. The premises of this document, known as the "Steele dossier," have been disproven by the media and the investigative services.

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I.G. Michael Horowitz

Inspector General Michael Horowitz, who investigated the FBI's conduct in the surveillance matter, found significant cause for concern. He observed "at least 17 significant errors or omissions in the Carter Page FISA applications and many errors in the Woods Procedures" that regulate the FISA process, according to the Washington Examiner.

On Tuesday, the court that approved the Page surveillance warrants -- the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court -- pointedly chastised the FBI in an order published by the clerk of the court. The rebuke was described by NBC News as being "highly unusual."

The court cogently observed the errors of the FBI:

[P]ersonnel of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) provided false information to the National Security Division (NSD) of the Department of Justice, and withheld material information from NSD which was detrimental to the FBI's case, in connection with four applications to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) for authority to conduct electronic surveillance of a U.S. citizen named Carter W. Page.

The court called into question the FBI's veracity and reliability:

The FBI's handling of the Carter Page applications, as portrayed in the OIG report, was antithetical to the heightened duty of candor described above. The frequency with which representations made by FBI personnel turned out to be unsupported or contradicted by information in their possession ... calls into question whether information contained in other FBI applications is reliable.

The court's mentality is one of "never again." They proceeded to establish January 10th as the date by which they want the FBI to provide a framework for reform.