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DOJ weighs whether to publish redacted Mueller findings on Roger Stone

DOJ weighs whether to publish redacted Mueller findings on Roger Stone
© Greg Nash

The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Friday that it is reviewing whether to make public the redacted portions of former special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerWhy a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel CNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump MORE’s findings related to Trump ally Roger StoneRoger Jason StoneTrump grants clemency to more than 100 people, including Bannon Trump expected to pardon Bannon: reports Pardon talk intensifies as Trump approaches final 24 hours in office MORE.

The review was prompted by a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request that sought the removal of redactions in light of Stone’s conviction for lying to Congress and witness tampering, for which Stone was sentenced to more than three years in prison.

“Following the sentencing of Mr. Stone and the lifting of the media communications order (the DOJ’s) Office of Information Policy concluded that reprocessing the Mueller Report is appropriate,” DOJ attorneys told a federal trial court in Washington, D.C., on Friday.

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The attorneys told the court that the DOJ expects to complete its review and, if appropriate, release an updated report by July 19.

The FOIA request came from the civil liberties group Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) and Jason Leopold, an investigative reporter at BuzzFeed News.

“The Justice Department, as part of the open government case EPIC v. DOJ, has agreed to reprocess the Mueller Report by June 19 and potentially release additional material pertaining to Roger Stone,” EPIC tweeted.

Leopold tweeted that the development marked a “#FOIA victory” following a “year long battle.”

Mueller’s 448-page report on his nearly two-year Russia probe is embedded with a series of redactions to conceal various types of sensitive information. Redactions are typically made to conceal grand jury materials and sensitive intelligence, as well as to protect privacy or hide information related to ongoing legal matters.

Stone, a 67-year-old right-wing provocateur and political ally of President TrumpDonald TrumpLil Wayne gets 11th hour Trump pardon Trump grants clemency to more than 100 people, including Bannon Trump expected to pardon Bannon: reports MORE, was convicted in November of seven counts of obstructing and lying to Congress and witness tampering related to his efforts to provide the Trump campaign inside information about WikiLeaks in 2016.

Stone was sentenced in February to three years and four months in prison. He was ordered to report to prison on June 30.