A federal judge ruled Thursday that former President Donald Trump and FBI Director Christopher Wray can be ordered to testify in a lawsuit by two former FBI officials. File Photo by Gary I Rothstein/UPI | License Photo
Feb. 23 (UPI) -- A federal judge ruled Thursday that former President Donald Trump and FBI Director Christopher Wray can be ordered to testify in a lawsuit by two former FBI officials.
Lisa Page, a former attorney for the agency, and Peter Strzok, a former agent, have a lawsuit against the Department of Justice for violating their right to privacy and improperly dismissing Strzok from the bureau. The department is accused of illegally releasing text messages between Page and Strzok.
Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., ordered that Trump and Wray can be called to testify for two hours each in the case with questions limited to a narrow scope of topics relating to the case, NBC News reports. The plaintiffs had to establish why the testimonies of the former president and current FBI director are relevant in their lawsuit.
Page first entered a lawsuit against the Justice Department in 2019, alleging that the department leaked private text messages to the media, leading to a swarm of public attacks against Page by Trump and his political allies.
The content of the text messages, which was discussed in the complaint, included discussions about "stopping" Trump from winning the 2016 presidential election. Trump made multiple public references to Page by name, calling her "corrupt," "incompetent" and "stupid," among other things.
Strzok was a part of the FBI's special counsel investigating Hilary Clinton under former FBI Director Robert Mueller. When the text message between he and Page -- who were engaged in a romantic relationship at the time -- were released, Strzok was dismissed from the investigation and ultimately fired in 2018. He also filed a lawsuit against the Justice Department in 2019.
The Hill reports that Strzok believes his termination from the FBI was politically motivated.
Trump previously attempted to sue Page, Strzok, former election opponent Hillary Clinton and others for the investigation into his alleged ties with Russia throughout the 2016 election. U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebrooks dismissed the lawsuit in September, stating it was merely an attempt to "flaunt a two-hundred-page political manifesto outlining his grievances against those that have opposed him," according to ABC News.