A former top FBI official has told a House panel that the agency’s Washington Field Office learned that FBI informants were involved in the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot.
The House Judiciary Committee conducted a transcribed interview with Steven D’Antuono, former assistant director-in-charge of the Washington Field Office (WFO).
During the interview, Mr. D’Antuono testified that the WFO learned after the riot that there had been confidential sources from other field offices in attendance and that other informants participated on their own accord.
When asked by Rep. Jim Jordan, Ohio Republican and the Judiciary chairman, whether there were any known or unknown Confidential Human Sources (CHS) at the riot, Mr. D’Antuono said, “Well, I think they were both.”
Mr. Jordan responded, “So, you now know that there were CHSes that the FBI knew ahead of time were going to be here on Jan. 6 and that there were also some unknown CHSes who, on their own accord, decided to come here on Jan. 6?”
Mr. D’Antuono replied, “That is my belief, yeah.”
He added that one particular source he remembered “was the Kansas City CHS that I believe the case agent knew he was coming, because I think he told them, if I recall.”
He added, “It’s possible WFO knew. I didn’t know.”
The Washington Times reached out to the FBI for comment but did not hear back.
Mr. Jordan just sent another letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray reiterating the panel’s requests in a Nov. 30 letter for documents and information about the FBI’s management of its CHS program and how the FBI handles informants.
The Washington Times learned in July that a whistleblower FBI agent told the House Judiciary Committee that Deputy Director Paul Abbate opposed any public acknowledgment of at least 25 FBI confidential human sources or informants involved in the riots.
According to the whistleblower disclosure sent to the panel, Mr. Abbate notified one or more of his subordinates that confidential human sources should not be named, in part because some informants were too problematic or embarrassing to have their existence made known to the public.
Rep. Darrell Issa, California Republican and a member of the Judiciary Committee, told The Washington Times that the FBI should have known that things were going to escalate at the planned Jan. 6 demonstrations.
“They just knew or should have known that what was going on, and one or more of those people in order to keep their cover, could well have been part of the reason that this got so far out of hand,” Mr. Issa said.
“Because the FBI won’t admit that they had 20,30 or 40 individuals on their payroll and or informants, they also certainly won’t admit how many came into the Capitol, or how many who participated in some way in promoting this illegal activity.”
In May, George Hill, a whistleblower from the FBI‘s Boston field office, testified before the Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government that agents in Washington refused to share hours of video from the Capitol protest between the offices.
According to Mr. Hill, agents in Washington feared there “may be” undercover officers or confidential human sources on the footage, which would risk compromising their identities.
Marcus Allen, an FBI intel analyst, allegedly was retaliated against for forwarding information that questioned Mr. Wray‘s November testimony to the Senate about whether informants had infiltrated some of the groups responsible for Jan. 6 protest.