By Jack Phillips
A lawyer representing several unnamed FBI whistleblowers said Wednesday that agents have lost confidence in the bureau’s leadership amid recent controversy.
The FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ) have faced Republican criticism over the raid of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago, while a number of whistleblowers have provided testimony to GOP lawmakers about alleged political bias at the bureau. Over the past weekend, high-ranking FBI agent Timothy Thibault departed the agency amid whistleblower complaints.
“I’m hearing from FBI personnel that they feel like the director has lost control of the bureau,” Kurt Siuzdak, a lawyer and former agent who represents FBI whistleblowers, told the Washington Times on Wednesday. “They’re saying, ‘How does this guy survive? He’s leaving. He’s got to leave.’”
Siuzdak told the paper that FBI agents have told him they’ve “lost confidence” in FBI Director Christopher Wray. “All Wray does is go in and say we need more training and we’re doing stuff about it, or we will not tolerate it.”
In March, Siuzdak told the New York Post that he left the FBI after a 25-year career as an agent due to what he says is a lack of accountability among FBI managers and the bureau’s leadership. He blamed it on political biases held by top managers and leaders.
Whistleblowers, Siuzdak told the paper this week, have alleged that Wray didn’t take action on a variety of matters, including sexual harassment claims and agents being forced to sign fake affidavits. Trump nominated Wray in 2017 after firing former Director James Comey.
When contacted by The Epoch Times last week about recent whistleblower claims, the FBI issued a statement that the “men and women of the FBI do their jobs with rigor, objectivity, and a fierce commitment to our mission.”
“All FBI employees are held to the highest standards of professional and ethical conduct. Allegations of misconduct are taken seriously and referred to the Inspection Division or the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General. Through the disciplinary process, the FBI will continue to hold employees accountable for any substantiated misconduct,” the agency added.
The FBI on Wednesday appeared to send the same statement to the Washington Times about Siuzdak’s interview. The Epoch Times has contacted the agency for additional comment.
Last week, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) said he’s received new whistleblower complaints from FBI employees, calling for a new investigation.
“The guy told me that he loves the bureau, that he doesn’t want to see the bureau defunded or destroyed, but that he really feels a need to come forward so that there’s a focus on the things they ought to be doing, not trying to affect political outcomes,” the GOP lawmaker said.
As for Thibault, a lawyer representing the former FBI agent told news outlets that he left the agency on his own terms and it had nothing to do with Hunter Biden or Trump. Whistleblowers have alleged to Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) that Thibault slow-walked the Biden laptop investigation and expressed animus toward Trump, according to letters he’s sent to FBI leaders.
“In the last couple of months, and particularly the last 24 hours,” a lawyer for Thibault said Tuesday, “there have been a number of inaccurate media stories and allegations on social media about our client.”
The lawyer said Thibault did not supervise the investigation into Hunter Biden. And neither did Thibault display any political biases in his work, the lawyer added, reported Time magazine.
“In particular, Mr. Thibault was not involved in any decisions related to any laptop that may be at issue in that investigation, and he did not seek to close the investigation,” the lawyer said, adding that he wasn’t involved in the Mar-a-Lago raid either.