Judge Napolitano To Shep: Rosen Committed ‘No Crime,’ ‘Absolutely Protected By 1st Amendment’


Appearing on Studio B this afternoon, Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano took on the news of his colleague James Rosen having his personal emails obtained by the federal government as part of an investigation into whether he received secret information from an official source on North Korea.

“There is simply no crime” in what Rosen was allegedly doing when the Justice Department decided to investigate him, Napolitano told Shepard Smith. “And for the FBI to tell a federal judge that James committed a crime by receiving classified information and offering to publish it — even by asking for classified information — is absolutely wrong, and brings the justice department into an entirely new area of invasion of First Amendment privileges.”

As Napolitano explained, Rosen and all journalists have “an absolute constitutionally protected right to seek news of material interest to the public wherever that news may be.” While it’s a crime for a government employee to give classified materials to someone without clearance, he said, “it is not a crime for the journalist to receive it or not a crime for the journalist to ask for it or a crime for the journalist to publish it and it is just terribly wrong to tell a federal judge that journalist engaged in criminal activity.”

After reading the date of the insvestigative documents from 2010, Napolitano added, “The federal government has an obligation to report to James. It’s been going on for years with no notification given.”

Watch below, via Fox News:

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