The FBI has been under increasing scrutiny from conservative members of Congress and is now being investigated for allegedly colluding with several large banks. Congressman Jim Jordan of Ohio and Congressman Thomas Massie of Kentucky are behind this new effort by the Committee on the Judiciary and the Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government. Massie and Jordan’s aim is to uncover private client information potentially given by various banks to the FBI “without any legal process.”
Congressmen Allege ‘Alarming’ Breach of Privacy By Big Banks
The House is currently investigating private client information given by Bank of America (BoA) and others to the FBI. Massie and Jordan outlined their concerns in a letter sent Monday to US Bancorp, JPMorgan, PNC Financial Services, Wells Fargo and Truist to find if they also breached client confidentiality.
As the letter notes, the investigation is focused on “conducting oversight of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and its receipt of information about American citizens from private entities.”
Specifically, FBI whistleblower George Hill testified that client transactions of BoA customers in and around Washington, DC between January 5 to 7 were turned over to the FBI without a legal proceeding.
Firearm Owners Reported To FBI
The congressmen allege that the FBI was given private financial information without a proper warrant and without following “proper due process” and their letter intends to find out if other major banks engaged in similar improper behavior.
Hill’s testimony that BoA turned over private financial information was accompanied by his statement that BoA also alerted the FBI of any client in the Washington, DC, area between January 5 to 7 “who had purchased a firearm during any date.”
Massie and Jordan say the alleged targeting of gun owners and release of private information to the FBI is “alarming” and they want all communications between the named banks in the letter and the FBI handed over to their committee and subcommittee.
Major Questions Remain
Massie and Jordan have given the banks until 5pm on June 26 to provide them with all documented communications with the FBI. The extensive investigation and prosecution of those who participated in the rally, protest and riots of January 6, 2021 continues to pose major questions about the role of the federal government agencies in respecting due process as well as the extensive use of federal informants and their incitement of violence at the Capitol on that day.
Paul Brian is an author and freelance journalist who has reported for Reuters, BBC and Foreign Policy, and contributed to the Spectator, the Federalist and the American Conservative. He has covered global events from Europe, the former Soviet Union and the Middle East to South America.