Three FBI Offices Wanted To Investigate Clinton Foundation, But Attorney General Loretta Lynch Refused Request

While the FBI was investigating Hilary Clinton's private email server, three FBI field offices wanted to also investigate the Clinton Foundation. However, Attorney General Loretta Lynch refused to allow the Department of Justice to go forward with the investigation, noting that a preliminary investigation done the year prior did not produce enough evidence to launch a case against the foundation. However, the three FBI offices claimed that they received a new lead from a bank that noted "suspicious activity from a foreigner who had donated to the Clinton Foundation."

CNN reports that Hillary Clinton was being looked into by the FBI for more than just her email server. The Clinton Foundation was also being investigated for public corruption. Three separate FBI offices were in agreement that the Clinton Foundation should be investigated for criminal conflict between the Clinton Foundation and the State Department when Hillary Clinton served as the secretary of state. The FBI offices say that new information of suspicious bank activity involving foreign donors should be investigated but the Department of Justice, lead by Attorney General Loretta Lynch, said they would not approve the investigation as it appeared to be politically motivated.

The DOJ noted that a preliminary investigation into the Clinton Foundation was opened after the controversial book Clinton Cash was released. However, the investigation found that the claims presented in the book were unsubstantiated and that there was not sufficient evidence to open a formal case against the organization. Therefore, Lynch says that a new investigation would be nothing more than political and that the DOJ would not be opening a case even if the FBI pursued an investigation of their own.

"DOJ officials pushed back against opening a case during the meeting earlier this year. Some also expressed concern the request seemed more political than substantive, especially given the timing of it coinciding with the investigation into the private email server and Clinton's presidential campaign."

Although the DOJ says there was not enough evidence to open a case against the Clinton Foundation for public corruption and criminal conflict with the State Department, the release of thousands of emails from Hillary Clinton's time at the State Department has raised more questions than answers. In fact, many point to Clinton's Chief of Staff Cheryl Mills as an example of the State Department's involvement in the Clinton Foundation.

During her time serving the State Department, Mills took a trip to New York City to interview individuals hoping to land a spot as the Clinton Foundation's top executive. The interview led many to believe that Hillary Clinton was using her position as the secretary of state to carry out work for the Clinton Foundation, sending her chief of staff to perform work for the foundation that would be a conflict of interest if Mills was paid by the State Department for her work with the Clinton's non-profit.

However, Mills says she was on vacation when she performed the interview and did the work for free as a non-profit volunteer. Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign responded to the allegations, noting that "it was crystal clear to all involved that this had nothing to do with her official duties. The idea that this poses a conflict of interest is absurd." It is noted that for a conflict of interest and public corruption case to exist, the FBI and DOJ would need to prove that a government employee received money or other items of value in exchange for working with the organization.

Currently, there is no known evidence to suggest that financial arrangements or gifts were given to government workers on behalf of the Clinton Foundation, but emails released by Judicial Watch as part of a Freedom of Information Act have raised questions about Hillary Clinton's involvement in the organization after becoming Secretary of State.

Before becoming the head of the State Department, Clinton had promised to stop her work with the Clinton Foundation in a bid to ensure no "inappropriate relationships" existed. However, the Judicial Watch emails seem to reveal that despite her pledge, it seems the State Department and the Clinton Foundation had a relationship that was cozy and potentially presented a conflict of interest, albeit not criminal.

What do you think about Loretta Lynch's decision not to pursue another case investigation into the Clinton Foundation?

[Photo by Elise Amendola/AP Images]