The Federal Bureau of Investigation is conducting a criminal investigation of a Florida company accused of scamming millions from customers during the period that Matthew Whitaker, the acting U.S. attorney general, served as a paid advisory-board member, according to an alleged victim who was contacted by the FBI and other people familiar with the matter.
The investigation is being handled by the Miami office of the FBI and by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, according to an email sent to the alleged victim last year by an FBI victim specialist. A recording on a phone line set up by the Justice Department to help victims said Friday the case remains active.
Mr. Whitaker, appointed Wednesday by President Trump to replace Jeff Sessions as head of the Justice Department, oversees the FBI in his new job.
Justice Department guidelines would require Mr. Whitaker to avoid any involvement in the Florida case, which relates to a company called World Patent Marketing Inc., said Stephen Gillers, an ethics expert at New York University Law School. Mr. Gillers said Mr. Whitaker “is unquestionably recused from any investigation or prosecution of World Patent Marketing.” [Continue reading…]