Sessions says leak probes have tripled and four have been charged

Attorney General Jeff Session to speak at Columbus Police Academy Wednesday

Regulator seeks input on changing "Volcker Rule" US attorney fired by Trump sends well-wishes to new Federal Bureau of Investigation director MORE on Friday announced a government-wide crackdown on leakers, which will include a review of the Justice Department's policies on subpoenas for media outlets that publish sensitive information.

President Donald Trump has publicly chided Sessions for the leaks emerging from the intelligence community during his administration, saying recently that it was part of the reason he was disappointed in his attorney general.

Sessions also said that the government aims to triple the number of leak investigations.

He also warned that the federal government was "taking a stand" against the "culture of leaking" and took a moment during his prepared remarks to speak directly to "would-be leakers".

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.

Sessions said that Justice has launched more investigations into leaks in the past six months than during the preceding three years.

At a press conference with Director of National Intelligence Dan CoatsDan CoatsSpy agencies changed rules, making it easier to unmask members of Congress How far does congressional investigative power go?

The attorney general also said he wanted to review policies on media subpoenas - compelling journalists to testify in court - to balance the role of the press with protecting national security. "No government can be effective when its leader cannot discuss sensitive matters in confidence or to talk freely in confidence with foreign leaders".

The Department of Justice said Friday it was reviewing its policies on subpoenaing reporters in investigations of information leaks, a move that could compel journalists to break confidential agreements with sources or face legal consequences. "We respect the important role that the press plays, and we will give our support". They can not place lives at risk with impunity.

"I've listened to our career investigators, FBI agents and others, and of prosecutors about how to most successfully investigate and prosecute these matters", Sessions said.

"From aggressively pursuing the leaking of classified information that puts innocent Americans at risk, to efforts that will secure our borders, to cracking on down on drugs and gangs, and especially being more supportive of local and national law enforcement, the DOJ under Jeff Sessions has been a breath of fresh air and he will make all Americans proud", said former Sen.

The attorney general said four people are already being prosecuted to allegedly leaking, though he did not provide any details.

"Anyone who engages in these criminal acts is betraying the intelligence community and the American people", Coats said.

President Trump has been enraged by the continual leaks coming out of the White House and intelligence community, and complained on Twitter last week that his attorney general was "weak" when it came to going after leakers. Graham said. "It's just not fair to President Trump".

Yet Trump's anger about the leaks of sensitive and classified information was ignited even before his inauguration.

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