PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — FBI Director James Comey testified in front of the House Intelligence Committee Monday, confirming for the first time that there’s an active investigation into Russia’s involvement with the 2016 election.
Retired Philadelphia FBI supervisor J.J. Klaver says it’s surprising for a director to admit they’re in the midst of an investigation.
“There is nothing unusual in his providing of information at (the committee’s) request,” Klaver explained, “but it is unusual for the FBI to even confirm publicly that investigations are ongoing.”
He says as a rule, the bureau doesn’t confirm ongoing investigations, nor comment or leak anything to the press.
“Information about classified investigations is not shared, even internally with those who don’t have a need to know,” says Klaver. “Those things are not widely discussed because there is not a need to know.”
Comey also confirmed that the bureau has found no evidence to support President Trump’s claims he was wiretapped while Obama was in office.
Klaver worked as a supervisor on the technical side of surveillance — and says it’s not under a president’s power to order a wiretap, adding that surveillance must be approved by a judge.
“It is not something that is taken lightly,” he said. “And it is not an investigative tool of first resort, it is more of an investigative tool that comes in much later in ongoing investigations.”
CIA Director John Brennan is scheduled to speak with the house committee next week.