The Justice Division is in search of interviews from the Home Committee on Jan. 6

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The Justice Department has asked the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on Congress to share the findings of its interviews — a rare moment of possible collaboration between the criminal investigation into the riot and the legislative inquiry.

Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-Miss.), the committee chair, told reporters Tuesday that the Justice Department — and some state and local investigators — have requested that the committee share copies of interviews conducted by lawmakers and House investigators were conducted.

“From what I understand, they want access to our work product, and we told them, ‘No, we’re not giving that to anyone,'” Thompson said. The committee may allow investigators to review records at the committee’s office, he said.

The Justice Department is prosecuting hundreds of men and women who allegedly breached the Capitol as they tried to demand Congress to overthrow Joe Biden’s election victory. Federal prosecutors also recently broadened their investigations into those who planned and funded the rallies in support of President Donald Trump that preceded the riots. And in Georgia, a local district attorney has launched a criminal investigation into Trump’s attempts to influence the state’s election results.

The status of important investigations related to Donald Trump

The New York Times first reported Tuesday that the Justice Department sent a letter last month requesting access to transcripts of interviews conducted by the House Committee. The request was open-ended and it was not clear how much of the committee’s material the Justice Department wanted to review, said a person familiar with the situation, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation.

Such a request is unusual in that the Justice Department and House Committee have largely avoided coordinating their separate lines of inquiry. But with the criminal investigation well into its second year and the Congressional investigation expected to wrap up in the coming weeks or months, prosecutors want to review the committee’s key evidence.

It’s hard to appreciate just how useful interview transcripts can be, given that the Justice Department and FBI have a variety of investigative tools and techniques that Congress does not have.

But the House committee has been aggressive in forcing individuals to cooperate with its investigation and has conducted more than 1,000 interviews — including detailed testimonies from some aides close to Trump’s presidency.

The House of Representatives has asked the Justice Department to criminally indict several former Trump aides with contempt for refusing to cooperate in the committee’s investigation.

As part of the Justice Department’s broadening of its investigation, a federal grand jury in Washington issued subpoena requests to some officials close to Trump who helped plan, fund and conduct the rallies on and near Jan. 6.

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