Clinton email decision seen as lifeline for those facing similar charges

Clinton email decision seen as lifeline for those facing similar charges, by Tim Johnson and Marisa Taylor.

Lawyers who specialize in representing government and military officials who’ve had security clearances revoked said Comey’s recommendation offered them a new tactic in seeking to rehabilitate their clients, especially if Clinton is elected president in November.

“I intend to use the Hillary defense,” said Sean M. Bigley, a lawyer whose firm handles dozens of cases a year involving national security clearances. “I really question how any agency can say someone is a security risk if the president of the United States did something similar.”

He added, “We’ve had people lose 20-year careers for doing less than what she did.” …

Kel McClanahan, another national security lawyer, said the FBI had not pursued an important line of inquiry: whether Clinton violated the law merely by setting up private servers and diverting government records. Someone who “conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates or destroys” government records can face a fine and up to three years in prison. The Justice Department has sent defendants to prison for such a crime, McClanahan said.