Federal Bureau of Investigation fires Peter Strzok in wake of anti-Trump text messages

Deputy Assistant FBI Director Peter Strzok speaks during a joint hearing of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees on Capitol Hill

Strzok, a veteran FBI counterintelligence agent worked on separate investigations into Democrat Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server and Robert Mueller's investigation into U.S. President Donald Trump's campaign and Russian Federation.

Aitan Goelman, Strzok's attorney, said FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich ordered the agent's termination on Friday.

Among the most infamous messages sent to Page during the election, Strzok vowed to stop then-candidate Trump from becoming president. "In doing so he reversed the decision of the career Federal Bureau of Investigation official responsible for employee discipline who concluded, through an independent review process, that a 60-day suspension and demotion from supervisory duties was the appropriate punishment".

Deputy Assistant FBI Director Peter Strzok testifies before a joint committee hearing of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees on Capitol Hill, July 12, 2018, in Washington.

Goelman said that his client's firing was politically motivated and that his texts represented political speech protected by the First Amendment.

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Former FBI Director James Comey was sacked by Trump in May 2017 after Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein helped pen a memo that was critical of how Comey handled the FBI's probe into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server. Trump has repeatedly denied any collusion and called the investigation a witch hunt. He later helped oversee the beginnings of the probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, and his involvement in both investigations has been seized on by Republicans as evidence of anti-Trump bias in the bureau and those investigating potential coordination between the Trump campaign and Moscow.

Strzok had been reassigned to the FBI's human resources division. He was removed from that post after his politically charged texts came to light.

The texts were cited in a 500-page report released in June by the Justice Department's inspector general.

Justice Department officials wrote Strzok's anti-Trump bias may have caused inaction following the discovery of Clinton emails on the laptop of disgraced Democrat New York Congressman Anthony Weiner in September 2016.

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