FBI’s deputy director, a frequent Trump target, abruptly leaves post

Published 8:04 am Tuesday, January 30, 2018

WASHINGTON — FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, a frequent target of aggressive criticism from President Donald Trump, has stepped down ahead of his planned retirement this spring, people familiar with the decision said Monday.

A 22-year veteran of the FBI, McCabe has held a number of leadership roles and has been heavily involved in investigations into major crimes including the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. But he’s been publicly and repeatedly lambasted over the past year by Trump, who  accused him of bias because of his wife’s political connections and an FBI investigation that produced no criminal charges against Hillary Clinton.

McCabe, who becomes eligible for retirement in a matter of weeks, informed FBI staff on Monday that he was leaving the bureau’s No. 2 post effective immediately, according to people who spoke only on condition of anonymity to discuss an internal personnel move. He is expected to retire with full pension benefits.

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The departure comes as FBI Director Christopher Wray makes changes to his senior leadership team, replacing two other top aides last week. Such changes are not unusual when a new director takes charge, but they are notable amid Trump’s public pressure on Wray to get rid of officials who were confidants of Comey.

McCabe has been repeatedly assailed by Trump since the fall of 2016, when it was revealed his wife had accepted campaign contributions from the political action committee of a  Clinton ally, during a failed state Senate run.