Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke has been referred for investigation to the DOJ by the Department of the Interior Inspector General. The referral stems from Zinke being suspected of using his position to help himself. This would be a criminal investigation.
According to The Daily Caller:
The Department of the Interior Inspector General (IG) has referred an ongoing probe of Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke to the Justice Department for a potential criminal investigation, The Washington Post reports.
The IG investigated Zinke for a 2008 land deal in Montana and for denying two tribes’ petition to build and operate a casino in Connecticut. It’s unclear which investigation was referred to the DOJ.
The DOJ is looking into whether Zinke “used his office to help himself,” a senior White House official told WaPo.
In 2008, a nonprofit Zinke started received a land donation from BNSF Railway in Zinke’s hometown of Whitefish, Montana. Zinke pledged to turn the land into a “children’s sledding park and community open space in a setting that recognizes the contributions of the railroad and the veterans to the community,” Zinke told Politico in a statement.
In the denial of the casino request, Zinke is being accused of denying it on political grounds and the tribe is threatening to restart a lawsuit against the federal government.