The secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court issued a rare public order on Tuesday in response to the Justice Department’s Inspector General report released last week that found serious errors with the FBI’s investigation into the connections between Russia and Trump aides. The court described the watchdog report as “troubling” and said the behavior of investigators was “antithetical to the heightened duty of candor” owed to the court, specifically rebuking the bureau’s process for wiretapping Carter Page, a former Trump campaign adviser. While the DOJ report debunked the Trump-backed theory that the probe was launched out of anti-Trump bias by FBI officials, Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz’s findings revealed that the agency’s wiretap applications for Page were riddled with inaccuracies and omitted significant material.
The presiding judge on the court, Rosemary M. Collyer, gave the FBI a Jan. 10 deadline to come up with a proposal that will detail how investigators will implement changes to prevent similar national security wiretapping mistakes in the future. “The frequency with which representations made by FBI personnel turned out to be unsupported or contradicted by information in their possession, and with which they withheld information detrimental to their case, calls into question whether information contained in other FBI applications is reliable,” Judge Collyer wrote in the order.