FBI Director William Sessions and his wife are being accused of a wide range of abuses, including that she tried to steer a $100,000 government contract for security at the couple's home to a family friend. The New York Times and the Washington Post say a criminal investigation is under way.
The Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility is conducting an inquiry into allegations against Mr. Sessions, who heads the nation's largest law enforcement agency, and his wife Alice.
The New York Times and the Washington Post reported in yesterday's editions that the department's criminal division was conducting a criminal investigation into some allegations raised by the ethics probe. Both newspapers said the criminal inquiry focused in part on personal long-distance telephone calls allegedly billed to the FBI director's office.
Two Democratic lawmakers said Tuesday that the investigation and the leaking of its existence to news organizations might be timed to undermine Sessions' investigation of alleged misconduct by Justice officials in the case of a bank loan to Iraq.
Washington writer Ron Kessler said Tuesday he passed on allegations to the FBI that Mrs. Sessions unsuccessfully pursued a $100,000 contract for security alarms for the Sessions' home in Washington to be installed by Donald Munford, husband of Sessions' aide, Sarah Munford.