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 For Immediate Release
Jun 16, 1999 Contact: Press Office

Bill Clinton personally intervenes in Filegate case

Asserts Privileges For Private Investigator Terry Lenzner

Clinton Seeks to Prevent His Private Investigator from Answering Questions about Filegate Witness Linda Tripp

Clinton Political Appointees Secretary Defense Cohen and Pentagon Spokesman Bacon Involved in Tripp File Release Scandal

(Washington, June 16) Judicial Watch, the public interest legal group, has learned President Clinton personally intervened in Judicial Watch's Filegate lawsuit on behalf of those staffers from the Reagan and Bush Administrations and others whose FBI files were illegally obtained, accessed and misused by the Clinton White House. Clinton is refusing to allow answers to, among other things, whether his private investigator was approached or retained to investigate Linda Tripp, a key Filegate witness. Defendants in the $90 million class-action Fileagate lawsuit, which is in the midst of pre-trial discovery, include Hillary Rodham Clinton, Craig Livingstone, Anthony Marceca, Bernard Nussbaum, the Clinton White House, and the FBI.

In a brief signed by his personal lawyers David Kendall and Robert Bennett, Clinton asserts attorney work product and attorney-client privileges to try to shield Lenzner from questioning about Tripp. Judicial Watch contends that these privileges, besides being waived, do not apply - as Lenzner was likely hired by the Clintons' to access and disseminate Tripp's FBI and other Privacy Act-protected material and to threaten and intimidate her, activities not protected by any privilege.

Judicial Watch uncovered the illegal release of personal information from Tripp's Pentagon file by Pentagon spokesman Kenneth Bacon, a high-level political appointee, a blatant violation of the Privacy Act. Judicial Watch has also uncovered Pentagon documents showing that Tripp's file was illegally accessed so that its information could be used for a meeting with Clinton's Defense Secretary William Cohen.

On March 13, 1998, Judicial Watch questioned the Clintons' Terry Lenzner, whose firm Investigative Group International, Inc. (IGI) was retained on behalf of Bill and Hillary Clinton by their law firms Williams & Connolly and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher, & Flom, LLP. Lenzner refused to divulge who and what exactly he was investigating on the Clintons' behalf. Incredibly, Lenzner even refused to answer if anyone ever requested him to use FBI files against adversaries of the Clinton administration. The transcript of Lenzner's deposition is available at Judicial Watch's Internet site -

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