The Slatest

Update: Requested DOJ Probe of Clinton’s Email is “Not a Criminal Referral”

Hillary Clinton looks at her BlackBerry on an elevator in Jan. 2009.

Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Update: Contrary to an earlier report in the New York Times, it now appears as though the request the Department of Justice received from a federal inspector general to launch an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of personal email while secretary of state is not a criminal matter. “The Department has received a referral related to the potential compromise of classified information,” a Justice Department official told Politico on Friday. “It is not a criminal referral.”

The Associated Press’ DOJ sources are now telling a similar story. “The official said the referral by the investigators did not relate to possible criminal wrongdoing, despite saying earlier Friday that it did,” the wire reports. “Another U.S. official said it was unclear whether classified information was mishandled and that the referral didn’t necessarily suggest any wrongdoing by Clinton.”

Original post, July 23, 11:56 p.m.: The Justice Department has been asked to open a criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email account while serving as Secretary of State and whether it criminally compromised classified information. The request was submitted by two inspectors general and is being reported by the New York Times.

Internal memos, reviewed by the Times, suggest that Clinton’s private account could contain hundreds of classified emails, although whether or not they were classified when the former Secretary of State received them is not clear. Clinton has maintained no classified material was on her personal email and that she was aware of the classification requirements. The State Department has, however, retroactively classified some of the emails during the process of handing them over to become part of the federal record.

“In the 3,000 pages that were released, for example, portions of two dozen emails were redacted because they were upgraded to ‘classified status,” according to the Times. “In [a memo] the inspectors general said that at least one email made public by the State Department contained classified information.”

Officials at the Justice Department say no decision has been made on whether to launch a criminal investigation.