Attempted obstruction of justice pertaining to an investigation of behavior that did not rise to criminal acts is not a crime.
#7 | Posted by Nuke_Gently at 2019-04-21 05:34 PM | Reply | Flag:
According to whom? I'd like to see the case law or the wording of the law where you get that supposed "fact" from.
Here's the actual wording of the law (from Cornell Law School's Legal Information Institute"): 18 U.S.C. § 1503 defines "obstruction of justice" as an act that "corruptly or by threats or force, or by any threatening letter or communication, influences, obstructs, or impedes, or endeavors to influence, obstruct, or impede, the due administration of justice."
Further they state: "Someone obstructs justice when that person has a specific intent to obstruct or interfere with a judicial proceeding. For a person to be convicted of obstructing justice, that person must not only have the specific intent to obstruct the proceeding, but that person must know (1) that a proceeding was actually pending at the time; and (2) there must be a connection between the endeavor to obstruct justice and the proceeding, and the person must have knowledge of this connection.
§ 1503 applies only to federal judicial proceedings. Under 18 U.S.C. § 1505, however, a defendant can be convicted of obstruction of justice by obstructing a pending proceeding before Congress or a federal administrative agency. A pending proceeding could include an informal investigation by an executive agency."
I don't see anything there that says there has to actually be criminal behavior under investigation, or even if the person committing the obstruction has to be the subject of the investigation. Maybe one of our resident lawyers can step in and interpret, but it seems pretty clear to me it doesn't matter whether the investigation actually found criminal behavior or not, it just has to be a "judicial proceeding", including "an informal investigation by an executive agency." If the investigation's failure to establish criminality were fatal to the claim of obstruction of justice, then as long as my obstruction were successful enough, I couldn't be charged with a crime. That would seem to be a perverse interpretation that would encourage obstruction.