From Fox News Legal Analyst Gregg Jarret
Those who don’t know the first thing about the law immediately began hurling words like “obstruction of justice”, “high crimes and misdemeanors” and “impeachment“. Typically, these people don’t know what they don’t know.
Here is what we do know.
Under the law, Comey is required to immediately inform the Department of Justice of any attempt to obstruct justice by any person, even the President of the United States. Failure to do so would result in criminal charges against Comey. (18 USC 4 and 28 USC 1361) He would also, upon sufficient proof, lose his license to practice law.
So, if Comey believed Trump attempted to obstruct justice, did he comply with the law by reporting it to the DOJ? If not, it calls into question whether the events occurred as the Times reported it.
Here is the statute from the Wikipedia
Misprision of felony” is still an offense under United States federal law after being codified in 1909 under 18 U.S.C.§ 4:
Whoever, having knowledge of the actual commission of a felony cognizable by a court of the United States, conceals and does not as soon as possible make known the same to some judge or other person in civil or military authority under the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
This offense, however, requires active concealment of a known felony rather than merely failing to report it.
If one knows that one is a target of a Federal investigation, it is illegal under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act to erase one’s browser history intentionally. Khairullozhan Matanov was prosecuted for erasing computer records about his friends, Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev; he pleaded guilty to a lesser included offense in 2015.
The Federal misprision of felony statute is usually only used in prosecutions against defendants who have a special duty to report a crime, such as a government official
If anyone has a special duty to report a crime it’s the director of the FBI. Raises more questions than it answers, but that’s the way this has been going.
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