Former ABC News investigative reporter James Gordon Meek has abruptly quit the Disney-owned network following an FBI raid from his home in Arlington, Va., and his colleagues have not seen him since, according to a new report.
Tatiana Siegel’s story for Rolling Stone dove into the bizarre situation surrounding the Emmy Award-winning journalist.
“Several sources familiar with the matter say Meek was the target of an FBI raid on the Siena Park apartments, where he had been living on the top floor for more than a decade. An FBI representative told Rolling Stone that his officers were present the morning of April 27…The FBI cannot comment further due to an ongoing investigation,” Siegel wrote. “Meek has not been charged with any crime. But independent observers believe the raid is among the first — and most likely the first — to be carried out against a journalist by the Biden administration.”
ABC News said rolling stone that Meek “resigned very abruptly and hasn’t worked for us in months”, while staff members told the magazine they “have no idea what happened to Meek”.
ABC News declined to provide further information when contacted by Fox News Digital, but confirmed that Meek quit abruptly.
“A federal magistrate in the Eastern District of Virginia court signed the search warrant the day before the raid. If the raid was for Meek’s records, U.S. Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco should have given her blessing; a new policy passed last year prohibits federal prosecutors from seizing reporters’ materials. Any exception requires the approval of the deputy AG,” Siegel continued. “As a result of the raid…Meek has become scarce.
Siegel reported that none of his neighbors who were willing to speak to Rolling Stone have spoken to him since the incident, and his apartment appears vacant.
“Sources familiar with the matter say federal agents found classified information on Meek’s laptop during their raid. An investigative reporter who worked with Meek said it would be highly unusual for a reporter or a producer to keep classified information on a computer,” Siegel wrote. before quoting Meek’s attorney.
“Mr. Meek is not aware of allegations from anonymous sources regarding his possession of classified documents,” his lawyer Eugene Gorokhov told Rolling Stone. “If such documents exist, as he claims, it would fall within the scope of his long career as an investigative journalist covering government wrongdoing. The allegations in your investigation are troubling for a different reason: they appear to come from a source within the government. It is completely inappropriate and illegal for members of the government to disclose information about an ongoing investigation. We hope the DOJ [Department of Justice] Promptly investigate the source of this leak.”
Rolling Stone added that it’s “unclear what story, if any, would have put Meek in the FBI’s crosshairs,” but noted that he frequently works on “extremely sensitive topics” involving terrorists and the Blackwater founder, Erik Prince.
Siegel reported that ABC’s sister company Hulu halted an Emmy campaign that attempted to spotlight “3212 Un-Redacted,” a documentary based on Meek’s reporting, once it “apparently went AWOL. “, and Simon & Schuster stopped using Meek’s credentials to promote a book he worked on. Lt. Col. Scott Mann, a retired Green Beret who worked on the book with Meek, told Rolling Stone he honored Meek’s request to step down from the project.
“He contacted me in the spring, and was really upset, and told me he had serious personal issues and had to step down from the project,” Mann told Siegel.
The report details how “the Obama and Trump administrations have come under fire for targeting journalists and their sources” but “in July 2021, Attorney General Merrick Garland enacted a new policy that prohibits federal prosecutors from seizing journalists’ records as part of leak investigations, with some exceptions, including if journalists are suspected of working for agents of a foreign power or terrorist organizations, as well as in situations involving imminent risks such as kidnappings or crimes against children.”
It is not known if the government had the reasons to act on Meek.
“At ABC News, Meek’s sudden absence left many of his colleagues baffled, given that he still had time left on his contract. But his background was often shrouded in mystery. Some contemporaries felt that he had served in the military before. One described a photo in his office that was taken in a desert, in which everyone else posing with Meek had their faces blacked out,” Siegel wrote.
Meek has not tweeted since April 27, the day of the raid.
Fox News’ Nikolas Lanum contributed to this report.