The FBI will not release detailed information about its inquiry into the alleged leaking of sensitive information on former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s emails, FBI Director James Comey announced Friday.
“As I have previously stated, the FBI cannot discuss the existence or nonexistence of an ongoing investigation,” Comey said. “However, based on our review, we have not changed our conclusions that we expressed in July with respect to Secretary Clinton.”
Comey made the announcement Friday morning after a highly anticipated appearance at the Aspen Security Forum, which was attended by lawmakers on the Judiciary Committee as well as journalists, including NBC Nightly News anchor Lester Holt.
The FBI is not going to release an all-encompassing review of the Clinton emails, Comey said, and no one would be able to use that information to attack Hillary Clinton.
“We can’t go around criticizing the Secretary,” Comey said Thursday. “That’s a waste of time and effort.”
The investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server when she was secretary of state continues, and the probe has drawn intense scrutiny since it was first revealed.
Comey has said that he is looking into whether classified information was mishandled by her. Critics, however, have noted that he did not say that, so it is unclear why the FBI is now refraining from confirming any more information about a highly sensitive investigation.
In his prepared remarks, Comey also said that he did not recommend charges against Clinton, although he did not rule out prosecuting her or any other individuals under the Espionage Act in the future.
Comey said the FBI does not have evidence that proves the emails sent by Clinton or her aides contained classified information and noted that this was not an investigation of whether they were intentionally sent or received in violation of the federal classification rules.
He also said there was no way to know if the emails that were discussed in the classified “podesta” email contained material that could have been considered “top secret.” They were, Comey said, unclassified.
“There’s no way to tell who sent what,” Comey said.
Related: New Emails Emerge In Probe Of Clinton Foundation Payments
Comey said the FBI had determined no one at the State Department sent classified information through any of the private email addresses Clinton used. “There’s no basis for any of those claims,” he said.
Comey said that he could imagine circumstances that would have allowed someone with knowledge of such a process to circumvent