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DHS Whistleblower Not Ready to Testify 09/19 08:14


   WASHINGTON (AP) -- A whistleblower from the Department of Homeland Security 
who says he was pressured to suppress facts in intelligence reports says he 
won't be able to testify before a House panel until the department gives him 
more access to "relevant information," according to his lawyer.

   Attorney Mark Zaid said Brian Murphy, a former top intelligence official at 
the department, won't participate in a closed-door deposition with the House 
Intelligence Committee "until the clearance issues have been resolved favorably 
in order to properly protect Mr. Murphy's legal rights." He says he and Murphy 
"look forward to and desire the opportunity" to participate.

   "Mr. Murphy wishes to provide protected, classified whistleblower 
disclosures to the relevant oversight authorities in the Executive and 
Legislative Branches," Zaid said in a statement. "That requires his access, as 
well as his legal counsel, to all relevant information."

   House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff made Murphy's complaint 
public last week and said he had been invited to provide a deposition on Sept. 
21. He has not been subpoenaed and was asked to participate voluntarily.

   An intelligence committee official said the panel hasn't rescheduled the 
deposition at this time, but said DHS had delayed the processing of his 
lawyers' clearances. The official, who was granted anonymity to discuss the 
closed-door meeting, said the clearances were needed so Murphy could be 
properly represented during any classified portions of the deposition.

   Murphy said in the complaint that he was pressured by senior officials to 
suppress facts in intelligence reports that President Donald Trump might find 
objectionable, including information about Russian interference in the election 
and the rising threat posed by white supremacists. The department has denied 
his allegations.

   Murphy, a former FBI agent and Marine Corps veteran, also alleged that 
senior DHS officials pressed him to alter reports so they would reflect 
administration policy goals and that he was demoted from his post as principal 
deputy under secretary in the Office of Intelligence and Analysis for refusing 
to go along with the changes and for filing confidential internal complaints 
about the conduct. He remains with the department in a different capacity.

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