Mrs. Clinton neither enabled the Benghazi attack by using her now-infamous private email server nor defamed its victims’ parents afterwards, U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled Friday in Washington, D.C., casting aside claims raised on behalf of parents of slain State Department information officer Sean Smith and late CIA operative Tyrone Woods.
The Smith and Woods families sued Mrs. Clinton last August in D.C. federal court alleging she caused their sons’ deaths by discussing sensitive State Dept. matters over an insecure, nongovernmental email system while secretary of state, supposedly providing terrorists with information used to plot the Sept. 11, 2012 ambush, according to the lawsuit.
Any emails sent by Mrs Clinton were within the scope of her position as secretary of state, the Obama-appointed judge ruled Friday, giving the court sufficient reason to dismiss the wrongful death claim on technical grounds, Politico first reported.
“The Court finds that Secretary Clinton was acting in the scope of her employment when she transmitted the emails that are alleged to give rise to her liability,” Judge Jackson‘s 29-page opinion reads in part. “The untimely death of plaintiffs’ sons is tragic, and the Court does not mean to minimize the unspeakable loss that plaintiffs have suffered in any way. But when one applies the appropriate legal standards, it is clear that plaintiffs have not alleged sufficient facts to rebut the presumption that Secretary Clinton was acting in her official capacity when she used her private email server.”
“Her actions – communicating with other State Department personnel and advisors about the official business of the department – fall squarely within the scope of her duty to run the Department and conduct the foreign affairs of the nation as Secretary of State,” Friday’s ruling said.