Justice Department, Abedin lawyers in talks to permit email search

(CNN) — The Justice Department and the FBI are in discussions with lawyers for Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin to secure approval that would allow the FBI to conduct a full search of her newly discovered emails, sources familiar with the discussions told CNN.

Authorities have not yet sought a search warrant for the emails, law enforcement sources told CNN. Government lawyers hope to secure a search warrant to permit investigators to review thousands of emails on a computer Abedin shared with her estranged husband, Anthony Weiner, officials said.

The new search warrant is needed because the existing authorization, covered by a subpoena, related only to the ongoing investigation of Weiner, who is accused of having sexually explicit communications with an underage girl.

Investigators from the FBI’s New York field office who are conducting the Weiner investigation stumbled on the Abedin emails while they were reviewing emails and other communications on the computer, which was considered to belong to Weiner, the officials said. They stopped their work and called in the team of investigators from FBI headquarters who conducted the probe of Clinton’s private email server.

Abedin’s lawyers didn’t respond to requests for comment.

The investigators saw enough of the emails to determine that they appeared pertinent to the previously completed investigation and that they may be emails not previously reviewed.

Because they don’t have a warrant specific to Abedin’s emails, officials have not been able to further examine them. Justice Department and FBI officials view Abedin as cooperative with the investigation.

FBI officials yet don’t know how many of the emails are duplicates of emails they already have reviewed as part of the Clinton email server investigation and whether any of them may contain classified information.

Investigators believe it’s likely the newly recovered trove will include emails that were deleted from the Clinton server before the FBI took possession of it as part of that earlier investigation.