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'I'll Be Your Sexual Freak': FBI Agents Harassing Colleagues, Abusing Minors & Boozing While on Duty

CC0 / / Domestic violence 
Domestic violence  - Sputnik International, 1920, 28.07.2021
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Several senior FBI agents remain unpunished for sexually harassing their subordinates, groping female agents, blackmailing them into sexual encounters, and drinking while on duty. Some FBI employees have even gone further by physically attacking their family members and abusing minors under 13 years old, reports indicate.
On 22 July, a report by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz exposed an unnamed FBI assistant director's inappropriate relationship with a subordinate, which "interfered with the ability of other FBI employees to complete their work."
However, the case nailed by IG Horowitz is just the tip of the iceberg, according to investigative journalist John Solomon, who recently listed a series of sexual misconduct episodes engulfing the bureau.
One of the cases was an alleged extramarital affair between two "Russia collusion" investigators, namely married counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page. Their apparently romantic relations came under the spotlight in 2017 when messages they exchanged before and after the 2016 election were scrutinised. In their communications Strzok and Page lambasted Donald Trump and spoke about some mysterious "insurance policy" allegedly targeting the GOP presidential hopeful.
Speaking to The Daily Beast in December 2019, Page dubbed her affair with Strzok "the most wrong thing I’ve ever done in my life." And still the ex-FBI lawyer fell short of offering an apology to "the woman who really [was] a victim in this mess, Strzok’s wife," The Philadelphia Inquirer remarked.

Abuses by Senior FBI Agents Usually Go Unpunished

Meanwhile, in December 2020, the Associated Press shed light on a bunch of sexual harassment cases in the FBI. One involved an assistant FBI director who retired after he was accused of drunkenly groping a female subordinate in a stairwell. Another concerned a senior FBI official who left after sexually harassing eight employees. A third high-ranking bureau agent retired after it turned out that he blackmailed a young employee into sexual encounters.
​All in all, AP identified at least six sexual misconduct allegations involving senior FBI officials over the past five years. What's more, the media outlet found that each of the accused FBI officials seemed to have avoided discipline being "quietly transferred or retired" and kept their "full pensions and benefits even when probes substantiated the sexual misconduct claims against them." Some of AP's reported incidents were later picked by IG Horowitz for further investigation. In April 2021, the inspector general confirmed the media outlet's findings in his report.
​But that is not all. In January 2021, IG Horowitz disclosed that an FBI assistant special agent in charge (ASAC) was engaged in unwanted physical sexual contacts with three other agency employees, made offensive sexual comments to his colleagues, and consumed and provided alcohol to subordinates and visitors in a federal building while on duty.
In March, the bureau agreed to pay a $1.2 million settlement to a current high-ranking female FBI agent who filed a lawsuit against the agency. The lawsuit alleged that a squad of male agents subjected her to sexual harassment and after she reported it they retaliated against her.
In June, FBI Supervisory Special Agent Karen Veltri filed a lawsuit against US Attorney General Merrick Garland as head of the agency. The lawsuit alleges that she was sexually harassed by two supervisors who retaliated against her once she complained about the misconduct to several oversight bodies.
According to the document, Veltri tried to solve the issue within her division, asking one of her two supervisors, Special Agent Robert Bennett, to help her when the other one, Assistant Special Agent in Charge Francis Cucinotta, started making inappropriate sexual comments to her.
However, instead of supporting his subordinate Bennett also started harassing Veltri. In particular, he sent her a text message reading "My Dick pic!!!!!" on her bureau-issued cell phone with "a photograph with a rainbow-coloured dildo between his legs," according to the suit. He also texted her numerous messages containing obscene language, as well as pics of booze and arms he owned.
CC0 / / Badge on a FBI agent
Badge on a FBI agent - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.09.2021
Badge on a FBI agent

Abusing Minors, Choking a Wife

Also in June, a Louisiana FBI agent was arrested by the state's Police Bureau of Investigations Special Victims Unit over sexual misconduct against juveniles under the age of 13. According to KLFY, in February 2021, the DoJ, OIG, and State Police received a complaint with regard to the agent's alleged sexual abuse of minors and adult victims across several jurisdictions in Louisiana. The incidents occurred as far back as 2016.
​On top of this, on 18 July Special Agent Richard J. Trask, an FBI employee at the centre of a probe into the kidnapping plot against Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, was arrested for allegedly smashing his wife's head on a nightstand and choking her after a dispute about a swingers event they had attended earlier that night. According to the full affidavit of probable clause cited by Detroit News, Trask's wife had bloody lacerations to the right side of her head, "blood all over chest, clothing arms and hand," and "severe" bruising to her neck and throat. The argent was charged with aggravated domestic violence and assault by strangulation.
​On the surface, however, the bureau continues to say that it "maintains a zero-tolerance policy toward sexual harassment" and other sorts of violence and abuses.
The instances indicating the erosion of morals at the FBI have emerged as the US federal agency is being increasingly accused by US conservative observers of either overlooking or even instigating the 1/6 Capitol breach, partisanship, warrantless spying, predawn raids of J6 suspects and interrogation without an attorney. Earlier the agency came under criticism from IG Horowitz for FISA abuses during the Trump-Russia investigation with an FBI lawyer being convicted on a felony false-statement charge
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