Ex-Clinton staffer again says no to testifying to Congress

AP News
Posted: Apr 22, 2016 12:54 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — A lawyer for the former Hillary Clinton staffer who set up her private email server has told Congress that his client still will not appear before Senate committees investigating the matter.

The Senate committees on the judiciary and homeland security had renewed their request to question Bryan Pagliano about the server after news broke that the FBI, which is also investigating the server, had offered him immunity.

Committee leaders had told Pagliano that the immunity grant should relieve any concerns he had about being prosecuted if he testified before them and requested that he appear before them. He had refused to speak with them last year, invoking his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination in declining to answer questions from the lawmakers about the server and email setup.

But Pagliano's attorney, Mark MacDougall, said in a March 11 letter obtained by The Associated Press on Friday that Pagliano would "respectfully decline" their invitation.

MacDougall also stressed that Pagliano had "not waived his rights under the Fifth Amendment as a matter of fact or law," though he did not provide any details about the grant of immunity.

"With all appropriate respect, whether and when a citizen may assert a Fifth Amendment a constitutional right is not up to your legal staff," MacDougall wrote. "Whatever agreement Mr. Pagliano may have reached with the Department of Justice in no way constitutes a waiver of his Fifth Amendment rights."

FBI Director James Comey said at an event Thursday in London that there is no timetable for the FBI to resolve its investigation into whether sensitive government information was mishandled on the email server.