Kashyap Patel, an Indian American lawyer, is reportedly the primary author of a politically charged memo which was released on Friday by the committee chairman, Representative Devin Nunes, over the opposition of the F.B.I. and the intelligence community, accusing federal officials of bias against President Trump, according to a New York Times report.
According to The New York Times, the memo known as the “Kash memo,” portrays the FBI in a negative light, alleging that the agency tried to help the Democratic party and its presidential candidate Hillary Clinton win against Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election.
However, the office of Congressman Nunes where Patel was a committee staff member, disagree with the fact that Patel wrote the memo and asserted that it was “a collective and team effort,” according to a Lockport Press report.
In an email to the New York Times, even Damon Nelson, the committee’s staff director, wrote that “no single member was responsible for the memo and that its creation was a ‘team effort’ that involved investigators who had access to source material.”
“The clamor to identify ‘an author’ is indicative of an alarming trend by opponents of our investigation, which is to promote spurious allegations against committee embers and staff. They will not impact the committee’s focus and commitment to continue this investigation,” Nelson wrote adding “we value Kash’s dedication and his contributions to the committee’s oversight efforts.”
This is not the first time though that Patel has caught himself in a controversy.
According to the New York Times, he had previously entered and dropped out of a charity bachelor auction after a blogger had pointed out that his license to practice in the Florida had expired.
In 2016, as a counterterrorism prosecutor for the Justice Department, he was berated by a federal judge who then issued an “Order on Ineptitude,” which he won while over the summer he traveled to London, where he tried unsuccessfully to meet with Christopher Steele, the author of the dossier that purported to details links between the Trump campaign and Russia, according to the New York Times.
According to the New York Times, Patel, 37, grew up in Garden City, New York and graduated from the University of Richmond in 2002.
According to his Facebook page, Patel earned a certificate in international law from the University College London Faculty of Laws and graduated from Pace University’s law school in 2005, spending part of his career in the Miami area as a federal public defender in Florida before taking a job at the Justice Department in 2014.
According to the New York Times, in early 2016, Judge Lynn N. Hughes of Federal District Court was infuriated with Patel for using internet credentials of another lawyer to give notice that he would be involved in a terrorism case, and then did not like how he was dressed.
“The last thing I need here, Mr. Patel is a bureaucrat who flies down here at great expense and causes trouble rather than actually is a productive member of the team,” the judge said, according to a transcript of the hearing.
After working on counterterrorism cases at the Justice Department, Patel joined the Intelligence Committee last spring as a senior staff member and has been at the forefront of Nunes’s inquiry into whether the F.B.I. and the Justice Department abused the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, according to the New York Times.
According to the New York Times, over the summer, Nunes dispatched Patel and another member of the committee’s Republican staff to London, in an attempt to meet Steele, a former British intelligence official, however failed to do so.
After Trump became president, Patel tried to get a position in the white house however, when it went to someone else, he left the Justice Department for a position on the committee in April 2017 where the Russia probe has been the dominant focus of Patel’s work, according to a Daily Beast report.
The Daily Beast also reports that the memo reportedly “discusses that dossier’s alleged role in Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s application for an extension of a surveillance warrant on former Trump campaign advisor Carter Page and is said to accuse Rosenstein of not telling a judge that Democrats helped fund the research project that the Steele dossier grew from.”
On Friday morning, just hours before the memo was expected to be released, President Trump tweeted; “The top Leadership and Investigators of the FBI and the Justice Department have politicized the sacred investigative process in favor of Democrats and against Republicans.”