Meet Imran Awan.
Awan was an aide to 25 members of the House Democratic caucus. Over the past decade, Awan and his family members were paid some $4 million by House Democrats. He was arrested on charges of bank fraud yesterday while attempting to flee the country; he was headed to Pakistan, where he had reportedly wired nearly $300, 000 to himself. Smashed hard drives were reportedly found at his home. According to Politico, Awan and his wife had been investigated for stealing equipment from some House members; there are suspicions that Awan may have put information from that equipment onto the cloud. While other House members fired Awan months ago, former Democratic National Committee head Debbie Wasserman Schultz decided to keep him on payroll until the day of his arrest, and attempted to stop police from looking at her smashed laptop, which Awan apparently had. Naturally, top Demcorats are claiming that Awan may have been arrested due to — you guessed it! — Islamophobia.
All of this should raise some serious questions.
1. Why Was Awan Being Paid So Much Money For So Long? According to The Daily Caller, Awan wasn’t doing a good job — in fact, he and his team weren’t on mandatory phone calls:
Fellow IT staffers TheDCNF interviewed said the Awans were often absent from weekly meetings and email exchanges. One of the fellow staffers said some of the computers the Awans managed were being used to transfer data to an off-site server.
2. What Information Did Awan Transfer? The Daily Caller, which has been all over this story, reports that Awan had “access to all emails and files of dozens of members of Congress, as well as the password to the iPad that Wasserman Schultz used for Democratic National Committee business before she resigned as its head in July 2016.”
3. What Is Wasserman Schultz Trying To Hide? Not only did Wasserman Schultz keep paying Awan, she reportedly “threatened the chief of the US Capitol police with ‘consequences’ for holding equipment that she says belongs to her.” Again, here’s The Daily Caller:
When TheDCNF asked Wasserman Schultz Monday if it could inquire about her strong desire for the laptop, she said “No, you may not.” After TheDCNF asked why she wouldn’t want the Capitol Police to have any evidence they may need to find and punish any hackers of government information, she abruptly turned around in the middle of a stairwell and retreated back to the office from which she had come.
4. Why Aren’t The Media Reporting This Story? Thus far, only Politico among the mainstream media news outlets has covered the Awan story. Nothing from ABC News. Nothing from NBCNews.com. Nothing from CNN. Nothing from The New York Times. That’s pretty stunning, considering the potential scope of the story. One suspicion: are mainstream outlets concerned that perhaps Awan might be in some way connected to DNC leaks that damaged Democrats, or that will do so in the future?
This is a major story. We’re just beginning to learn the ramifications. It’s certainly bizarre that it’s being buried by mainstream outlets.