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Obama not under investigation for treason

February 21, 2018

WASHINGTON (AP) — A story claiming an FBI official has announced he’s investigating former President Barack Obama and other Democrats for treason is not true. The false story also incorrectly identified the official as “the U.S. District Attorney.”

The site conservativefighters said that Dana Boente, general counsel to the FBI, will pursue treason charges against Obama “and any liberals or Democrats working to undermine the president.” Boente never made such an announcement and he is wrongly identified in the story as the U.S. District Attorney.

The story also errs in claiming that Obama demoted Boente at some unspecified time during his presidency, removing him from a Justice Department position that was second in line behind the attorney general, and that Trump reversed that action.

Obama nominated Boente in 2015 to lead federal prosecutions in Virginia’s eastern district, and Boente remained in that job through the rest of Obama’s term. After Trump took office in January 2017, the new president brought Boente to the Justice Department in Washington, where he has served in several senior roles. He officially left the prosecutor’s job in Virginia in October.

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This is part of The Associated Press’ ongoing effort to fact-check misinformation that is shared widely online, including work with Facebook to identify and reduce the circulation of false stories on the platform.

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