Benghazi Attack Case Sees First Federal Charges

The Justice Department has filed federal charges against multiple suspects involved in the Benghazi embassy attack which occurred last year. A US official speaking with Fox News stated that one of the individuals charged in the case is Libyan militia leader Ahmed Khattalah. Khattalah had already admitted to being the curator of the attack, making the federal charges against him unsurprising.

So far the case is sealed, leaving Khattalah as the only confirmed suspect, although it is likely that there are several people being charged. Republicans have been putting pressure on the Obama administration to close the case by charging someone with the murder of Christopher Stevens who was killed during the raid.

It has taken an unusually long time to charge anyone with the crime partly due to the FBI being unable to access the attack site for two weeks after the raid. Just last week, FBI director James Comey showed his frustration regarding the lack of suspects in the case:

It has been more than 10 months since the attacks. We appear to be no closer to knowing who was responsible today than we were in the early weeks following the attack. This is simply unacceptable.
During the attack, much of the compound was destroyed as numerous Libyan militia members looted the entire building leaving it incredibly difficult for anyone to analyze the crime scene. During the attack, rocket-propelled grenades were used to gain access to the US consulate and then a second wave of militia members went after the CIA annex.

Along with wanting someone to be held accountable, republicans have also been hard on the Obama administration for supposedly not being completely upfront and honest about the attack. Susan Rice took the majority of the blame as some members of government felt that she mislead the American public about what happened during the attack, this ultimately forced her to withdraw her name from consideration to become secretary of state.