Appeals court rules against releasing draft Whitewater indictments against Clinton

Appeals court rules against releasing draft Whitewater indictments against Clinton
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The nation’s second-most powerful court sided with the government Friday in its decision not to release draft indictments prepared against Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe Armageddon elections to come Poll: Trump leads 2024 Republican field with DeSantis in distant second The politics of 'mind control' MORE during the Whitewater scandal of the mid-1990s.

A unanimous three-judge panel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia said the conservative group Judicial Watch failed to show “exception interests” that would warrant disclosure of the documents. 

The watchdog group filed a Freedom of Information Act Request with the National Archives and Records Administration in 2015 for two draft indictments that reportedly arose from the Office of Independent Counsel investigation into the Clinton’s real estate investments in Arkansas and contributions made to the real estate entity Whitewater Development Corporation.


Judicial Watch claims the indictments show Clinton's involvement in alleged fraudulent transactions.

But the National Archives denied their request and said Clinton’s privacy interests outweigh the public's interest in the matter. 

In fighting the agency's decision, Judicial Watch argued that Clinton’s privacy interests are minimal given her previous positions as first lady, United States senator and then secretary of State. 

Judge Judith Rogers disagreed.

“As indicated during oral argument, it is difficult to imagine circumstances where a draft indictment could ever be disclosed without seriously infringing an individual’s privacy interest,” she wrote in affirming the lower court’s decision to keep the documents concealed. 

“Having never been formally ‘accused of criminal conduct’ by the Independent Counsel, Mrs. Clinton, no less than an individual who has been charged but not convicted, is 'entitled to move on with her life without having the public reminded of her alleged but never proven transgressions.'”