Amidst the growing issue regarding the leaked emails retrieved from the private server used by State Secretary Hillary Clinton’s camp, the FBI recently released a report accusing U.S. State Department Undersecretary Patrick Kennedy of allegedly pressuring the agency to downgrade the classification of a classified document.
In the report released by the FBI earlier this week, the agency included an interview with an official from its records management department. The official, whose name was not revealed, then alleged that sometime in June or July of last year, Kennedy had a meeting with the FBI regarding some of the emails handled by the State Department.
During the meeting, Kennedy reportedly spent about 15 minutes trying to convince the agency to change the label of a classified document into unclassified. In return, the official claimed that Kennedy promised the FBI that the State Department will allow the agency to place additional agents in more countries, Politico reported.
As noted by the official, Kennedy even approached Assistant Director Michael Steinbach of the FBI’s counterterrorism division regarding the matter. However, Steinbach refused to alter the classification of the document.
In response, the State Department denied the allegations presented in the FBI’s report.
“This allegation is inaccurate and does not align with the facts,” State Department spokesperson Mark Toner said in a statement. “To be clear: the State Department did upgrade the document at the request of the FBI when we released it back in May 2015.”
The report recently released by the FBI serves as the latest exposé plaguing Clinton’s camp for using a private server to handle sensitive information. As noted by FBI Director James Comey, over 100 classified emails were recovered from Clinton’s server.
Despite being clearly labeled as classified, the Democratic presidential hopeful’s camp has maintained that its members were not aware of the classification of the documents.