The Justice Department under the presidency of Donald Trump (2017-2021) required and seized from the Apple company metadata of Democratic congressmen and their work and personal environments, in order to investigate leaks to the press about Russia, the newspaper reported.
The New York Times. Among the lawmakers whose data was seized is Adam Schiff, who currently chairs the Lower House Intelligence Committee. Congressman Eric Swalwell, who participated in the Democratic primaries for the White House, confirmed to CNN that he was also the subject of the search. Swalwell also said that one of the family members who also had metadata seized was a minor.
The Department of Justice, then under the orders of Jeff Sessions, required the documents from Apple in February 2018 through a secret order , which was renewed three times until expiring in 2021. It was then that the apple company mordida informed those affected that their metadata had been seized by the Department of Justice.
The objective of the Trump administration was to investigate where the abundant leaks to the media about the contacts of the then president’s environment with the Kremlin came from. According to the Times, the mechanism used by the Trump administration to investigate the leaks is unprecedented in Congress.
In the framework of the same investigation, the Department led by Sessions also required information from journalists to try to find out their sources , as recently reported by CNN, The New York Times and The Washington Post.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, said in a statement that “these actions appear to be another heinous assault on (US) democracy by the former president.” For his part, Schiff urged the Justice Department to conduct an internal investigation into this and other cases that suggest a political use of the institution “by a corrupt president.”
The Lower House Intelligence Committee chaired by Schiff was one of those that led the investigations into Trump’s alleged ties to the Kremlin and later into his contacts with Ukraine that led to the first “impeachment” against him.