Attorney General Jeff Sessions told Fox’s Tucker Carlson on Thursday that sometime next week, there would be a press conference to announce charges on criminal leaks to the press.
“Some people need to go to jail,” Sessions said. “If we can make cases, they are going to jail.”
Along with Sessions, White House Director of Communications Anthony Scaramucci has made it a central theme of his short time in office to weed out leakers from the communications office.
Speaking on Fox & Friends on July 26, he said he had been given the green light to fire anyone in the communications office who was found leaking.
“You’re either going to stop leaking or you’re going to get fired,” he said.
He seemed to take that a step further on Thursday by threatening to go to the Department of Justice and FBI for what he said was a felony charge for leaking a financial disclosure form, which Politico published.
He tagged White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus in that message, which many people read as insinuating him in the “leak.”
Scaramucci later deleted the tweet once learning that the form was open to the public upon request. He then tweeted a photo from Axios saying he apparently wanted Priebus investigated, with the caption, “Wrong! Tweet was public notice to leakers that all Sr Adm officials are helping to end illegal leaks. @Reince45.”
The Justice Department has already announced charges against one federal contractor who it alleges leaked sensitive information to the media.
Sessions said he intends to heed President Donald Trump’s request to step up investigations on the leaks, which many see as not only damaging to the administration, but a threat to national security.
U.S. officials were put in a tight spot with U.K. authorities when sensitive information on their investigation into the bomb attack on an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester was leaked to the American press. Entire transcripts of Trump’s phone calls with foreign leaders have also made it into the media’s hands.
The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee said in a report earlier this month that there were 125 leaks to the press that it classified as a threat to national security.
“I have not been happy with the past prosecutions and investigations of criminal leaks,” Sessions told Carlson. “We’re stepping up those cases. It cannot continue.”