Following its internal investigation into former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, the US State Department concluded Friday 38 people were “culpable” of sending classified information to her.
The investigation found that the current or former State Department officials were involved in 91 security violations. However, the report did not identify any of the individuals. An unclassified report regarding the investigation was sent this week to Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, who is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and he publicly released the report on Friday.
“While the use of a private email system itself did not necessarily increase the likelihood of classified information being transmitted on unclassified systems, those incidents, which then resulted in the presence of classified information upon it, carried an increased risk of compromise or inadvertent disclosure,” the report states.
The report also notes that “while there were some instances of classified information being inappropriately introduced into an unclassified system in furtherance of expedience, by and large, the individuals interviewed were aware of security policies and did their best to implement them in their operations.”
If any of the 38 individuals are currently still in government positions, the State Department could take internal disciplinary action against them, according to the Wall Street Journal. Although they are unlikely to face any other punishment, the violations will be recorded in their files and “will be considered when they apply for or go to renew security clearances,” according to AP.
The FBI completed its investigation of Clinton’s use of a private email server in 2016. However, over the last three years, State Department investigators have interviewed many former and current State Department employees about the matter.
In 2015, the FBI launched an investigation into “potential unauthorized transmission and storage of classified information” on Clinton’s server. The agency revealed that a substantial number of her correspondences contained classified information. After a year-long probe, then-FBI Director James Comey recommended that no charges be brought against Clinton in July 2016, though he called her conduct “extremely careless.”
In late October 2016, Comey resumed the probe into Clinton’s emails after some were found on a laptop owned by Anthony Weiner, the husband of top Clinton aide Huma Abedin. A few days later, Comey stated that the FBI would not change its previous recommendation.