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  Horowitz Report Chapter 5 Section IV

       Inaccurate, Incomplete, or Undocumented Information in the First FISA Application
IV. Inaccurate, Incomplete, or Undocumented Information in the First FISA Application

Our review revealed instances in which factual assertions relied upon in the first FISA application targeting Carter Page were inaccurate, incomplete, or unsupported by appropriate documentation, based upon information the FBI had in its possession at the time the application was filed.
We describe the most significant instances below and provide additional examples in a chart in Appendix One. We found no evidence that the OI Attorney, NSD supervisors, ODAG officials, or Yates were made aware of these issues by the FBI before the first FISA application was submitted to the court. Although we also found no evidence that Camey had been made aware of these issues at the time he certified the application, as more fully discussed in our analysis in Chapter Eleven, multiple factors made it difficult for us to precisely determine the extent of Comey 's or McCabe 's knowledge as to each fact that was not shared with OI and not included, or inaccurately stated, in the FISA applications. These factors included, among other things, limited recollections, the inability to question Comey about classified material because of his lack of a security clearance, and the absence of meeting minutes that would show the specific details shared with Comey and McCabe during briefings they received, beyond the more general investigative updates that we know they were provided.

A. Information about Page 's Prior Relationship with Another U.S. Government Agency and Information Page Provided to the Other Agency that Overlapped with Facts Asserted in the FISA Application

The OI Attorney told us that it is relevant to know if the target of a FISA is or had been working on behalf of another U.S. government agency to" make sure that the left hand knows what the right hand is doing'' when seeking FISA authority.
As noted previously, according to the OI Attorney, it would have been a significant fact if Page had a relationship with the other U.S. government agency that overlapped in time with his interactions with known Russian intelligence officers described in the FISA applications because it would raise the issue of whether Page interacted with the Russian intelligence officers at the behest of the other agency or with the intent to assist the U.S. government. Evans told us that information about a FISA target 's relationship with another U.S. government agency is typically included in a FISA application. Evans also stated that OI would work with the FBI to fully understand any such relationship and describe it accurately in the relevant application.

Toward that end, on September 28, 2016, the OI Attorney emailed Case Agent 1 a draft of the FISA application, copying other members of the Crossfire Hurricane team.
In a comment in the draft application, the OI Attorney asked" do we know if there is any truth to Page 's claim that he has provided information to[ another U.S. government agency]- was he considered a source/asset/whatever? '' In response to the OI Attorney 's question, on September 29, Case Agent 1 inserted the following comment in the draft:

" He did meet with[ the other U.S. government agency], however, it 's dated and I would argue it was/is outside scope, I do n't think we need it in.
It was years ago, when he was in Moscow. If you want to keep it, I can get the language from the[ August 17 Memorandum] we were provided[ by the other U.S. government agency].''

Based upon this response, the OI Attorney did not include information about Page 's prior relationship with the other agency in the FISA application.

However, the information Case Agent 1 provided to the OI Attorney was inaccurate.
As described in the August 17 Memorandum from the other U.S. government agency to the FBI, Page first met with the other agency in April 2008, after he left Moscow( Page had lived in Moscow from 2004 to 2007), and he had been approved as an operational contact for the other agency from 2008 to 2013. Additionally, rather than being outside the scope of the FISA application, the FISA application included allegations about meetings that Page had with Russian intelligence officers that Page had disclosed to the other agency. Specifically, according to the August 17 Memorandum, Page provided information to the other agency in October 2010 about contacts he had with a Russian intelligence officer( Intelligence Officer 1), which the other agency assessed likely began in 2008. Page 's contacts with Intelligence Officer 1 in 2007 and 2008 were among the historical connections to Russian intelligence officers that the FBI relied upon in the first FISA application( and subsequent renewal applications) to help support probable cause. The August 17 Memorandum stated that Page told the other agency that he met with Intelligence Officer 1 four times, characterized him as a" compelling, nice guy,'' and described Intelligence Officer l 's alleged interest in contacting an identified U.S. person. According to the August 17 Memorandum, the employee of the other U.S. government agency who met with Page assessed that Page" candidly described his contact with'' Intelligence Officer 1. Page 's relationship with the other agency was not mentioned in any of the four FISA applications.

Further, the FBI had information in its own files indicating that Page had told the FBI about meeting with the other U.S. government agency after the period he lived in Moscow and during the period alleged in the FISA application.
For example, according to the FBI Electronic Communication( EC) documenting a June 18, 2009 FBI interview of Page, Page had informed the FBI agents that" due to his work and overseas experiences, he has been questioned by and provides information to representatives of the[ other U.S. government agency] on an ongoing basis,'' and that the" interviewing agents acknowledged this fact, and stated to Page that no questions would be asked about Page 's dealings with the other U.S. government agency during the interview.'' According to another FBI EC, Page told the FBI during a June 2013 interview that, although he had not spoken to the other U.S. government agency for" about a year or so'' Page had spoken to them" since his last interview with the FBI.''

The Woods File for the first FISA application, which was prepared by Case Agent 1, included the EC documenting the 2009 FBI interview of Page.
Additionally, Case Agent 1 received an email on August 10, 2016, containing an attachment titled" Carter Page-Profile,'' which had been prepared by a Crossfire Hurricane Staff Operations Specialist( SOS). The profile, dated August 1, 2016, quoted the 2009 EC regarding Page 's statements to the FBI about his contact with the other U.S. government agency. We did not find any electronic communications indicating that the FBI provided OI with this Carter Page profile.

We asked Case Agent 1 about his knowledge in 2016 of Page 's historical contacts with the other U.S. government agency and Case Agent l 's response to the OI Attorney 's question on September 29, 2016, about any such contacts.
Case Agent 1 told us that he did not recall his state of knowledge in 2016 regarding Page 's history with the other U.S. government agency, but said he believed that he likely would have reviewed the August 17 Memorandum about Page sent to the Crossfire Hurricane team by the other U.S. government agency. He said he recalled believing that Page 's involvement with the other U.S. government agency was" dated.'' After reviewing a synopsis of the information contained in the August 17 Memorandum during his OIG interview, Case Agent 1 reiterated to the OIG that he believed the information was dated, but also said that he" probably saw it.'' According to Case Agent 1," I think I would have reviewed it with the team. I think that it would have been, you know, as we looked at it. It was n't just me. But, we, you know, there was a determination made that it was dated.'' Case Agent 1 also said it was possible that he never reviewed the August 17 Memorandum from the other U.S. government agency.

The OI Attorney told us that he could not recall much about the issue of Page 's historical contacts with the other U.S. government agency.
After being shown his exchange with Case Agent 1 on September 29, 2016, the OI Attorney stated that if Case Agent 1 told him that Page 's contacts with the other U.S. government agency were" out of scope'' and dated, then he would have deferred to Case Agent 1 's assessment on this issue. The OI Attorney also told us, after being informed about information in the August 17 Memorandum from the other U.S. government agency, that if OI had been aware of this information at the time the application was being prepared, OI would have discussed it internally and likely would have disclosed the information to the FISC to" err on the side of disclosure.'' When we discussed the information in the August 17 Memorandum with Evans, he responded similarly and told us" I think it would go in the application somewhere, be it in a footnote or elsewhere, if for no other reason than it also goes to the question of where the person 's loyalties lie.''

As described later in Chapters Seven and Eight, none of the three renewal applications described Page 's prior historical contacts and relationship with the other U.S. government agency, even after the FBI received additional information from the other agency in June 2017.
In April and May 2017, following news reports that the FBI had obtained a FISA targeting Carter Page, Page gave interviews to news outlets denying that he had collected intelligence for the Russian government and asserting instead that he had previously shared information that he had learned with the U.S. intelligence community. In mid-June 2017, in response to concerns expressed by members of the Crossfire Hurricane team, the OGC Attorney contacted the other U.S. government agency by email to seek clarification about Page 's past status with that agency. The other U.S. government agency responded by email to the FBI OGC attorney by directing the attorney to memoranda previously sent to the FBI by the other U.S. government agency that informed the FBI that Page did previously have a relationship with that other agency and that the last contact occurred in July 2011. The email also stated, using the other agency 's terminology, that Page had a relationship with that other agency. However, when asked about Page 's prior status with that other agency by a Crossfire Hurricane supervisor, SSA 2, who was going to be the affiant on the final FISA renewal application, the OGC Attorney told SSA 2 that Page had never had a relationship with the other U.S. government agency. In addition, the OGC Attorney altered the email that the other U.S. government agency had sent to the OGC Attorney so that the email stated that Page had not been a source for the other agency; the OGC Attorney then forwarded the altered email to SSA 2, who told us he relied on the email. Shortly thereafter, SSA 2 served as the affiant on the final renewal application, which was again silent on Page 's prior relationship with the other U.S. government agency.

B. Source Characterization Statement

As described earlier, because the FBI did not have information corroborating the Steele reporting relied upon in the Carter Page FISA application, it was particularly important for the application to articulate to the court the FBI 's assessment of the reliability of the source.
Toward that end, the final application included in a footnote the following source characterization statement regarding Steele:

Steele is a former[ REDACTED] and has been an FBI source since in or about October 2013.
[ Steele 's] reporting has been corroborated and used in criminal proceedings and the FBI assesses[ Steele] to be reliable.[ Steele] has been compensated approximately$ 95,000 by the FBI and the FBI is unaware of any derogatory information pertaining to[ Steele].

The OIG found no documentation in the Woods File indicating that Steele 's handling agent, Handling Agent 1, approved this language, as required by Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and Standard Minimization Procedures Policy Guide( FISA SMP PG) discussed in Chapter Two.
Case Agent 1, who as described earlier compiled the Woods File and completed the Woods Procedures, told us that he was not aware of this requirement. Handling Agent 1 told the OIG that he did not approve this language, and that his OIG interview was the first time he ever saw it. Further, Handling Agent 1 said that although he found Steele to be reliable in the past, only" some'' of Steele 's past reporting had been corroborated and most of it had not. He also stated that Steele 's reporting had never been used in a criminal proceeding.

Handling Agent 1 also told us, and FBI emails and instant messages reflect, that he had provided language on September 23 to Case Agent 1 for the source characterization statement that was substantively different from the final language used in the FISA application:

CHS has been signed up for 3 years and is reliable.
CHS responds to taskings and obtains info from a network of sub sources. Some of the chs ' info has been corroborated when possible.

Case Agent 1 provided this language from Handling Agent 1 to the OGC Unit Chief, who had requested that he reach out to the handling agent for a description of Steele 's reliability and corroboration.
However, the language Case Agent 1 provided to the OI Attorney on September 29, which was later used to draft the reliability footnote 8, differed from the language provided by Handling Agent 1 and instead stated the following:

This information comes from a sensitive FBI source whose reporting has been corroborated and used in criminal proceedings, and who obtains information from a number of ostensibly well-positioned sub-sources.
The scope of the source 's reporting is from 20 June 2016 through 20 August 2016.

Case Agent 1, the OGC Unit Chief, and the OGC Attorney told us that they did not recall or know the specific circumstances that led to the use of" corroborated and used in criminal proceedings'' in the final application instead of language that more closely tracked what Handling Agent 1 had provided.
Emails and other FBI documents reflect that Case Agent 1 borrowed the exact language used in the final application from an Intelligence Memorandum on the Steele reporting, which the Supervisory Intel Analyst and Staff Operations Specialist( SOS) had prepared in late September 2016. Case Agent 1 told us that he most likely wanted to make sure that the language in the FISA application was consistent with how Steele was described in that document, which he believed had been vetted by analysts.

The Supervisory Intel Analyst told us that the phrase" corroborated and used in criminal proceedings'' was a reference to Steele 's reporting in the FIFA investigation.
He said that neither he nor anyone else on the team reviewed any of the documents or court filings in the FIFA case file, and he did not" dig into'' exactly how Steele 's reporting was used in the FIFA case. He said that his entire knowledge about Steele 's role in and significance to the FIFA investigation came from Handling Agent 1, though he said he did not recall what he specifically learned from Handling Agent 1 regarding how Steele 's information was used in the FIFA investigation. Handwritten notes documenting conversations with Handling Agent 1 indicate that the Crossfire Hurricane team was left with the understanding that Steele was the original source for the FIFA investigation. SSA 1 told the OIG that the team" speculated'' that Steele 's information was corroborated and used in criminal proceedings because they knew Steele had been" a part of, if not predicated, the FIFA investigation'' and was known to have an extensive source network into Russian organized crime. SSA 1 told us that the email he sent to Handling Agent 1 and others on September 19, requesting a" source characterization statement,'' among other information on Steele, reflected his" intent'' as the case supervisor to provide accurate information in the FISA application about Steele 's history with the FBI. As noted in Chapter Four, in connection with the FIFA matter, Steele had provided leads to the FBI, namely that the FBI should talk to a contact who had information on corruption in the FIFA organization. It was the contact 's information, in part, that led to the opening of the FIFA investigation. However, the FIFA case agent and a prosecutor on the case told us that, to their knowledge, Steele did not have any role in the investigation itself, he did not provide court testimony, and his information did not appear in any indictments, search warrants, or other court filings. According to Handling Agent 1, he was clear with the Crossfire Hurricane team concerning Steele 's role and that Steele had provided leads and not evidence in the FIFA case.

Witnesses gave us different understandings as to the meaning and scope of the phrase," used in criminal proceedings.''
Handling Agent 1 told us that he never told the Crossfire Hurricane team that Steele 's past reporting was" used in criminal proceedings,'' and he was bothered that the team used that phrase. Other witnesses said that the phrase could include providing a lead that helped bring about a criminal investigation, such as Evans who told us that a tip that leads to evidence of criminal wrongdoing could meet the" spirit'' of" used in criminal proceedings.'' However, some witnesses, including attorneys who served in FBI OGC, NSD, and ODAG, interpreted the phrase to mean that the source information was used in some sort of formal court proceeding or legal process. In particular, Baker told us that, in his view, the phrase implies that the information" was n't just a tip,'' but that it was used as evidence in a trial, in an affidavit, or in some other court filing or legal process.

Given the importance of a source 's bona fides to a court 's determination of credibility-particularly in cases where, as here, the source information supporting probable cause is uncorroborated-we believe the failure to comply with FBI policy requiring that Steele 's handling agent review and approve the language in the source characterization statement was an important one.
This failure may have resulted in the court being left with the misimpression that Steele 's past reporting( or at least some of it) had been deemed worthy by prosecutors of being relied upon in court or that more of his information had been corroborated than was actually the case. Further, as we describe in Chapters Six and Eight, additional documentation became available to the Crossfire Hurricane team subsequent to the first FISA application that provided information contrary to the characterization of Steele in the first FISA application, including the finding of a formal FBI source validation review in March 2017 that Steele 's past reporting on criminal matters, which included the FIFA case, was" minimally corroborated.'' Despite this information, the description of Steele in the FISA renewal applications did not change.

C. Information about a Steele Sub-Source Relied Upon in the FISA Application( Person 1)

As described earlier in this chapter, the information in the FISA application relied upon to establish probable cause to believe that Carter Page was coordinating with the Russian government on 2016 U.S. presidential election activities was based upon certain aspects of Steele 's reporting.
This reporting included the alleged secret meetings between Page and Russian officials in July 2016 described in Steele 's Report 94. We found that the most descriptive information in the FISA application of alleged coordination between Page and Russia came from Steele 's Report 95, which attributed the information to" Source E.''

The FISA application stated that, according to this sub-source, Carter Page was an intermediary between Russian leadership and an individual associated with the Trump campaign( Manafort) in a" well-developed conspiracy of co-operation'' that led to the disclosure of hacked DNC emails by Wikileaks in exchange for the Trump campaign team 's agreement, which the FBI assessed included at least Carter Page, to sideline Russian intervention in Ukraine as a campaign issue.
The application also stated that this same sub-source provided information contained in Steele 's Report 80 that the Kremlin had been feeding information to Trump 's campaign for an extended period of time and that the information had reportedly been" very helpful,'' as well as information contained in Report 102 that the DNC email leak had been done, at least in part, to swing supporters from Hillary Clinton to Donald Trump. Because the FBI had no independent corroboration for this information, as witnesses have mentioned, the reliability of Steele and his source network was important to the inclusion of these allegations in the FISA application.

Before the initial FISA application was filed, FBI documents and witness testimony indicate that the Crossfire Hurricane team had assessed, particularly following the information Steele provided in early October, that Source E was most likely a person previously known to the FBI, referred to hereinafter as Person 1.
The Supervisory Intel Analyst 's written summary of the early October meeting with Steele specifically attributed the information in Report 95 to Person 1 and also described information that Steele provided to the FBI team about Person 1, including that Person 1" is a` boaster' and an` egoist' and may engage in some embellishment.'' The day after the early October meeting, the Supervisory Intel Analyst emailed this written summary to the Crossfire Hurricane team, as well as Strzok and the Intel Section Chief. The OIG found no documents or written communications in which the Crossfire Hurricane team evaluated Steele 's statement characterizing Person 1 as a boaster or embellisher. SSA 1, who received the written summary from the Supervisory Intel Analyst, told us that he did not recall any such conversations.

The footnote describing this sub-source in the FISA application did not include any information about how Steele had described Person 1 as a boaster or embellisher.
Documents reflect that, on or about October 12, the OI Attorney received the Supervisory Intel Analyst 's written summary of the early October meeting that attributed the information in Report 95 to Person 1 and stated that Steele had described Person 1 as a boaster and embellisher. The OI Attorney made handwritten notes on the written summary when he met with members of the Crossfire Hurricane team to learn more about the source network. The OI Attorney told us that he did not recall the team flagging this issue for him or that he independently made the connection between the sub-source in the FISA application and Steele 's characterization of Person 1. Case Agent 1 and the OI Attorney told the OIG that they did not recall any conversations about Steele 's statement about Person 1 at the time of the FISA application. We found no evidence that Steele 's characterization of Person 1 was shared with Evans or the OI managers involved in the FISA application, and they told us that they did not recall being made aware of it. Evans and the OI Attorney told us that they would have wanted to discuss the issue internally in NSD and with the FBI and likely would have, at a minimum, disclosed the information to the court.

In addition, we learned that Person 1 was at the time the subject of an open FBI counterintelligence investigation.
We also were concerned that the FISA application did not disclose to the court the FBI 's belief that this sub-source was, at the time of the application, the subject of such an investigation. We were told that the Department will usually share with the FISC the fact that a source is a subject in an open case. The OI Attorney told us he did not recall knowing this information at the time of the first application, even though NYFO opened the case after consulting with and notifying Case Agent 1 and SSA 1 prior to October 12, 2016, nine days before the FISA application was filed. Case Agent 1 said that he may have mentioned the case to the OI Attorney" in passing,'' but he did not specifically recall doing so.

We believe the FBI should have specifically and explicitly advised OI about the FBI 's assessment that this particular sub-source relied upon in the FISA application was Person 1, that Steele had provided derogatory information regarding Person 1, and that the FBI had an open counterintelligence investigation on Person 1.
Those facts were relevant to OI 's assessment of the strength of the information in the FISA application and, based on what we were told was the Department 's practice, likely would have been included by OI in the application so that the FISC could consider the information in deciding whether to grant the requested FISA authority.

D. September 23 Media Disclosure

As described earlier, the final FISA application included the FBI 's assessment in Footnote 18 that the FBI" does not believe that[ Steele] directly provided... to the press'' the information in the September 23 Yahoo News article concerning the investigation of Carter Page and his alleged meetings with Sechin and Divyekin.
The basis for this assessment, as asserted in the application, was that Steele told the FBI that he" only provided this information to the business associate and the FBI.'' However, this assertion of what Steele said was inaccurate, and the documentation in the Woods File did not support it.

The documentation in the Woods File relied upon for this assertion was a written summary of the meeting in early October with Steele.
The summary was drafted by Case Agent 2 and, as noted above, was emailed to the Crossfire Hurricane team a day after the meeting. This Woods document, however, did not state or otherwise indicate that Steele only provided the information to his business associate and the FBI. Indeed, the Woods document noted that Steele told the team that he also had provided his election reports to his contacts at the State Department. Neither Case Agent 1 nor SSA 1, who performed the Woods Procedures on this application, noted this error, and it is not clear upon what basis they believed they had verified the factual assertion in the footnote about the FBl 's assessment of who provided information to the media for the September 23 news article. Both Case Agent 1 and SSA 1 told the OIG that they may have mistakenly been thinking the footnote said Steele gave the information to the" U.S. government'' rather than" the FBI.''

As described in Chapter Six, during his OIG interview, Steele told us that in September he and Simpson gave an" off-the-record'' briefing to a small number of journalists about his reporting.
Steele said he did not have permission to disclose to the OIG who attended this briefing but acknowledged that Yahoo News was identified in one of the court filings in the foreign litigation as having been present. The author of the Yahoo News article reported publicly in February 2018 that he received a briefing from Steele on the information discussed in the article before the article was published, although the author also stated that he did not rely solely on Steele in his reporting.

Neither of the FBl 's two written summaries of the meeting in early October 2016 with Steele indicate that Steele was asked specifically about the article or generally about contacts with the media.
During our interview with Steele, he told us that he was" fairly sure'' the FBI team did not ask him at the meeting or at any other time, but that had they asked, he would have told them about his interactions with the media. The OI Attorney surmised in an October 14 email to the OI Unit Chief that the FBI team had not asked Steele those questions. The OI Attorney told us that he did not recall whether he sought or received clarity on whether the FBI team had specifically asked Steele about the Yahoo News disclosure. He said that he probably would have included more information in the application if he had additional clarity on that point.

As detailed in Chapter Four, we found no documentation demonstrating that Steele was asked by the FBI whether he was the source of the Yahoo News article disclosure or told the FBI he was not.
Handling Agent 1 told us that he had no idea how the FBI made its assessment that Steele 's business associate or the law firm likely provided the information to the media. We found that the basis for that assessment was neither accurate nor supported by appropriate documentation, demonstrating a failure in the Woods process. Further, as we describe in Chapter Seven, as the FBI learned new information about Steele 's disclosures to the media-from the source himself, from Department attorney Bruce Ohr, and from media reports of the source 's admissions in court filings in the foreign litigation-the FBI did not make changes in any of the three later FISA renewal applications to reflect this new information.

E. Papadopoulos 's Denials to an FBI CHS in September 2016

As described earlier, one of the main elements relied upon by the FBI in support of its probable cause showing was the FFG information concerning George Papadopoulos and the reported offer or suggestion of assistance from the Russians to someone associated with the Trump campaign.
Specifically, the government stated the following in the FISA application:

In or about March 2016, George Papadopoulos[ footnote omitted] and Carter Page( the target of this application) were publicly identified by Candidate# 1 as part of his/her foreign policy team.
Based on reporting from a friendly foreign government, which has provided reliable information in the past... the FBI believes that the Russian Government 's efforts are being coordinated with Page and perhaps other individuals associated with Candidate# l 's campaign. In or about July 2016, the above-referenced friendly foreign government provided information to a senior official within the U.S.[ government] regarding efforts made by the Russian Government to influence the 2016 U.S. Presidential election. Specifically, according to this information, during a meeting in or about April 2016 between officials of the friendly foreign government and George Papadopoulos... Papadopoulos suggested that Candidate# l 's campaign had received some kind of suggestion from Russia that Russia could assist with the anonymous release of information during the campaign that would be damaging to another candidate for U.S. President( Candidate# 2). It was unclear whether Papadopoulos or the Russians were referring to material acquired publicly or through other means. It was also unclear from this reporting how Candidate# l 's campaign reacted to the alleged Russian offer. Nevertheless, as discussed below, the FBI believes that election influence efforts are being coordinated between the RIS and Page, and possibly others.

However, during a September 2016 CHS meeting conducted by the FBI, which was consensually monitored, Papadopoulos told an FBI CHS that, to his knowledge, no one associated with the Trump campaign was collaborating with Russia or with outside groups like Wikileaks in the release of emails.
The FISA application did not include the statements Papadopoulos made to this CHS that were in conflict with information included in the FISA application.

Case Agent 1 told us that he did not recall whether he advised the OI Attorney about Papadopoulos 's denial in September 2016 but that, if he did not, it may have been an oversight.
He also said that the Crossfire Hurricane team 's assessment was that the Papadopoulos denial was a rehearsed response, and that he did not view the information as particularly germane to the investigation of Carter Page. We were advised by NSD that it did not know about this denial by Papadopoulos until May 2018, after ODAG found the information while reviewing documents for possible production to Congressional committees. The OI Attorney told us that he had no memory of being aware of this CHS meeting at any time before May 2018.

As described in Chapter Eight, in July 2018, after learning this information, NSD submitted a letter to the FISC under Rule 13( a) of the Court 's Rules of Procedure, notifying the court of additional information relevant to the Carter Page FISA applications.
The Rule 13( a) letter included Papadopoulos 's statements to the FBI CHS in September 2016, as well as similar statements Papadopoulos made to a CHS in late October 2016, after the first application was filed. The letter stated:

The above-described additional background information concerning Papadopoulos 's September 2016 meeting with[ an FBI CHS] and October 2016 discussion with a separate CHS would have been included in the applications had it been known to NSD at the time, as Papadopoulos 's statements relate to the question of whether Papadopoulos was aware of or involved in coordination of election influence efforts between the RIS and members of Candidate# 1 's campaign.
Even had this information been included, the totality of information submitted in these applications concerning Page 's activities was sufficient to support the Court 's finding of probable cause that Page was acting as an agent of a foreign power.[ Footnote omitted].

Evans told the OIG that a FISA target 's denial of facts asserted in a FISA application should be included in the application, even in instances where the FBI makes an assessment that the target making the denial is not being candid or truthful.
According to Evans, there was no question in his mind that the Papadopoulos denial to the CHS in September 2016 was relevant to the court 's consideration of the first application. In fact, later renewal applications advised the court of denials made by Papadopoulos to the FBI over the course of several interviews in 2017, as well as the FBI 's belief that Papadopoulos provided misleading and incomplete information.

F. Carter Page 's Denials to an FBI CHS in August and October 2016

As described earlier in this chapter, the FBI conducted CHS meetings involving Carter Page in August and October 2016.
We found that statements made by Page during these meetings, which conflicted with information included in the first FISA application, were not provided by the FBI to OI, and were not disclosed in the first FISA application.

In August 2016, as we describe in Chapter Ten, the FBI consensually monitored and recorded a meeting between Carter Page and an FBI CHS, during which Page said that he had" literally never met'' or" said one word to'' Paul Manafort, and that Manafort had not responded to any of Page 's emails.
Page made similar statements during one of his interviews with the FBI in March 2017. Although the first Carter Page FISA application and subsequent renewal applications alleged that Page was acting as an intermediary between Manafort and the Russian government as part of a" well-developed conspiracy''( from Report 95), none of the applications included statements from Carter Page to the CHS that conflicted with the conspiracy allegation.

The statements made by Page in August 2016 were not provided to OI prior to the filing of the first FISA application.
The OI Attorney told us that, like the September 2016 CHS meeting involving Papadopoulos, he had no memory of being made aware of Page 's August 2016 statements regarding Manafort before the first FISA application was filed. Case Agent 1 told us that he did not discuss these statements with the OI Attorney because he did not view them as contrary to the allegations in Report 95, in that it was possible that Manafort used Page as an intermediary without communicating directly with Page.

We found that information about the August 2016 meeting was first shared with the O1 Attorney on or about June 20, 2017, when Case Agent 6 sent the OI Attorney a 163-page document containing the statements made by Page during the meeting.
As described in Chapter Seven, Case Agent 6, to bolster probable cause, had added to the draft of FISA Renewal Application No. 3 statements that Page made during this meeting about an" October Surprise'' involving an" email dump'' of" 33 thousand'' emails. The OI Attorney told us that he used the 163-page document to accurately quote in the final renewal application Page 's statements concerning the" October Surprise,'' but that he did not read the other aspects of the document and that the case agent did not flag for him the statements Page made about Manafort. The OI Attorney told us that these statements, which were available to the FBI before the first application, should have been flagged by the FBI for inclusion in all of the FISA applications because they were relevant to the court 's assessment of the allegations concerning Manafort 's use of Page as an intermediary with Russia. Case Agent 6 told us that he did not know that Page made the statement about Manafort because the August 2016 meeting took place before he was assigned to the investigation. He said that the reason he knew about the" October Surprise'' statements in the document was that he had heard about them from Case Agent 1 and did a word search to find the specific discussion of that topic.

Regarding the similar statement Page made during one of his March 2017 interviews with the FBI, the OI Attorney told us that Case Agent 6 also did not flag this statement for him, but added that he( OI Attorney) should have noticed the statement himself in the interview summary Case Agent 6 forwarded to him on March 24, 2017, since it was only five pages, and the OI Attorney had read the entire document.

As described previously, the FISA application contained several statements Carter Page made to an FBI CHS during a consensually monitored and recorded meeting in October 2016, before the first FISA application was filed.
In an email sent the same day as the CHS meeting to Case Agent 1 and other members of the Crossfire Hurricane team, the OGC Attorney asked the team to promptly send OI information about the meeting, including, among other things, any" exculpatory'' statements made by Carter Page during this meeting, which was" probably the most important'' information to provide to OI. Case Agent 1 thereafter provided to OI, on the same day as the October 2016 meeting, some of the statements made by Page to the CHS.

We determined, however, that the information Case Agent 1 provided to OI which was incorporated into the first FISA application, did not fully or accurately describe the information obtained by the FBI as a result of the meeting.
According to the first FISA application, Page told the CHS during the meeting that the Russians would be giving him an" open checkbook.'' The application further stated that Page did not" provide[ the CHS] any specific details to refute, dispel, or clarify the media reporting'' regarding Page 's contacts with Russian officials Sechin and Divyekin, but that he made" vague statements that minimized his activities.'' However, the application failed to include Page 's statement during the meeting in which Page specifically denied meeting with Sechin and Divyekin, and denied even knowing who Divyekin was. The application did not contain these denials even though the application relied upon the allegations in Report 94 that Page had secret meetings with both Sechin and Divyekin while in Moscow in July 2016. The application also failed to include the fact that Page denied to the CHS knowing anything about the disclosure by Wikileaks of hacked DNC emails, which was contrary to the information from Report 95 in the application. Further, the application alleged that" Page helped influence'' the Republican Party" to alter[ its] platform to be more sympathetic to the Russian cause.'' However, it did not reference the fact that Page said to the CHS during their meeting that he" stayed clear of that-there was a lot of conspiracy theories that I was one of them...[ but] totally off the record... members of our team were working on that, and... in retrospect it 's way better off that! ... remained at arms length.''

When we asked Case Agent 1 why he failed to provide this information from the October CHS meeting to the OI Attorney in advance of the first FISA application, he told us that he did not think that Page 's statements on these issues were specific.
We noted, however, Case Agent 1 used the transcripts of the recording as the support in the Woods File for the statements in the FISA applications. We further noted that the documents in the Woods File specifically stated that Page" denied meeting with Sechin/Divyekin,'' and said he" stayed clear'' of the efforts of the Republican platform committee and knew" nothing about'' Wikileaks. Neither Case Agent 1 nor SSA 1 noted the inconsistency during the Woods Procedures, even though instant messages show that SSA 1 also knew as of October 17 that Page denied ever knowing Divyekin. This inconsistency was also not noted during the Woods Procedures on the subsequent FISA renewal applications, and none of the three later FISA renewal applications included Page 's denials to the CHS.

We found no information indicating that the FBI provided OI with the documents containing Page 's denials before finalizing the first FISA application.
Instead, Case Agent 1 provided a summary that did not contain those denials to the OI Attorney and that the OI Attorney relied upon that summary in drafting the first application. Evans told us that had NSD known of Page 's denials regarding Sechin and Divyekin, it was the kind of information that would have been included in the application.

Before FISA Renewal Application No. 1, was filed in January 2017, the OI Attorney did receive the documents containing the denials Page made to the CHS in October 2016.
Yet, the information about the meeting remained unchanged in the renewal applications. The OI Attorney told us that he did not recall the circumstances surrounding this, but he acknowledged that he should have updated the descriptions in the renewal applications to include Page 's denials.

In the next chapter, we describe the FBl 's activities involving Steele after the first FISA application, including the FBl 's decision to close Steele as a CHS and the FBI 's efforts to assess Steele 's election reporting in 2016 and 2017.
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