IT Specialist Who Set Up Clinton's Private Server Will Plead the Fifth

Leah Barkoukis
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Posted: Jun 02, 2016 7:30 AM
IT Specialist Who Set Up Clinton's Private Server Will Plead the Fifth

Bryan Pagliano, the man who set up Hillary Clinton’s private email server, will invoke his Fifth Amendment rights and refuse to answer questions over an open records lawsuit.

According to a court filing released on Wednesday, lawyers for Pagliano said that their client will not be answering questions from Judicial Watch during a deposition scheduled for Monday.

The move forecloses the possibility that Pagliano would break his months of silence about the server issue, even as scrutiny has intensified on his role.

Pagliano’s lawyers told Judicial Watch more than a week ago that he would not be answering any questions, they claimed in their filing on Wednesday, and asked that it drop its subpoena. The organization refused.

His lawyers are also demanding that a written transcript of the proceedings be used rather than videotaping, noting that the latter poses “a serious danger to deponents invoking the Fifth Amendment.”

“Given the constitutional implications, the absence of any proper purpose for video recording the deposition, and the considerable risk of abuse, the court should preclude Judicial Watch …. from creating an audiovisual recording of Mr. Pagliano’s deposition,” they wrote.

Judicial Watch also said it would oppose this motion.

The IT expert has previously refused to answer questions on Capitol Hill, invoking his Fifth Amendment rights before the House Select Committee on Benghazi and rejecting requests from leaders of the Senate Judiciary and Homeland Security committees to answer their questions.   

Last month, the State Department said that it had lost the backup archive of Pagliano’s emails from his time at the department. However, it had been able to cobble together some emails through the accounts of other officials. 

Last month, a federal judge gave Judicial Watch the go-ahead to ask Pagliano questions under oath as part of a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit connected to Clinton’s emails, alongside key Clinton aides such as Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin.  

Mills answered questions for roughly seven hours last Friday, during which she claimed never to have seen Pagliano interacting with Clinton or her senior aides. 

Since Pagliano was granted immunity from the Justice Department amid the FBI’s investigation of Clinton, little is known about how Pagliano maintained Clinton’s private server.