Thanks to that rare designation, Huma Abedin was able to collect paychecks from the State Department, the Clinton Foundation and a consulting firm called Teneo Strategies. (AP Photo)
A federal judge ordered the State Department on Monday to hand over all documents related to the employment status of Huma Abedin, former deputy chief of staff to Hillary Clinton, by the end of September.
But attorneys for the agency told the court Monday they had not yet found any related records among the materials provided this month by the FBI, raising the possibility that the State Department will have no personnel files to produce by its deadline.
The Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by conservative-leaning Judicial Watch sought documentation of the “special government employee” status given to Abedin in 2012.
Thanks to that rare designation, Abedin was able to collect paychecks from the State Department, the Clinton Foundation and a consulting firm called Teneo Strategies — all at the same time.
Judicial Watch first filed a lawsuit in pursuit of the records behind Abedin’s controversial work arrangement in 2013, but the case was closed after agency officials said they had searched thoroughly for the documents.
A judge re-opened the case last year after learning that thousands of previously undisclosed records had been discovered on Clinton’s private email server.
Abedin has taken fire for holding simultaneous positions at the Clinton Foundation and the State Department, a situation that presented her with numerous conflicts of interest.
However, agency officials have uncovered little in the way of evidence that State Department attorneys or other ethics officers examined the arrangement to ensure Abedin would keep her foundation and diplomatic work separate.
In fact, State Department officials say they have found scant documentation of the arrangement at all.
The FOIA lawsuit over Abedin’s employment status is one of several pending against the State Department in search of records related to Clinton’s tenure.
Many of the roughly 15,000 private emails recovered from the Democratic nominee’s server by the FBI will not be ready for release before the election on Nov. 8.