As per a report from Fox News on January 17, the House Judiciary Committee disclosed that federal investigators requested information from multiple U.S. banks to identify individuals involved in the Capitol riots on January 6, 2021.
According to a letter acquired by the conservative network, the committee and subcommittee focusing on the Weaponization of the Federal Government have been looking into instances where law enforcement obtained data from U.S. citizens without legal procedures. The letter further highlighted that law enforcement collaborated with the private sector in these privacy breaches.
The committee chair, Jim Jordan, a Republican from Ohio, stated in the letter that the committee found that the Treasury Department’s FinCEN circulated materials to banks and financial institutions with the aim of focusing on individuals of interest. Jordan further mentioned that FinCEN supplied numerous U.S. banks with specific search terms to identify transactions on behalf of federal law enforcement agencies.
Jordan also pointed out that FinCEN issued warnings to banks and financial institutions regarding different signs of extremism. These signs included allegations connected to movement in specific regions of the country with unclear intentions. He underscored that notable indicators involved the procurement of literature and subscriptions to media platforms promoting extremist perspectives.
The Ohio Republican and his committee urged Noah Bishoff, the former director of FinCEN, to participate in a recorded interview before Congress regarding the scandal. Jordan mentioned the possibility of additional information beneficial for the committee’s review. He requested Bishoff to reach out to the committee officially to arrange the interview before January 31. Additionally, a letter was dispatched to FBI Director Christopher Wray, seeking a meeting with the bureau’s senior private sector partner.
In a different section of the letter, Jordan clarified that despite the overwhelmingly lawful nature of the transactions conducted in these banks, FinCEN appeared to have embraced a risky categorization of numerous Americans as potential threats. He highlighted that FinCEN’s involvement in privacy breaches establishes a concerning precedent, raising the possibility of federal investigators and agencies infringing upon fundamental liberties.