Civics: Justice Department audit finds widespread flaws in FBI surveillance

Josh Gerstein:

A Justice Department audit of the FBI’s use of secret surveillance warrants has found widespread problems with the law enforcement agency’s process for ensuring that all claims it makes to judges to get the warrants are backed up by facts.

The finding of broader failings in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act program came in a review launched by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz after an earlier inquiry found numerous errors in applications for surveillance for former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page.

In a bid to assess whether the faults in the Page’s surveillance process were an aberration or a chronic problem, Horowitz’s audit team zeroed in on 29 applications for surveillance on U.S. citizens or green-card holders over a five year period and whether the so-called “Woods procedures” for justifying an application were properly followed.