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House oversight panel says Dan Snyder conducted “shadow investigation” against accusers

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Washington Commanders owner Dan Snyder and his lawyers launched a “shadow investigation” to influence the NFL’s internal investigation into workplace misconduct at the team and to discredit victims and witnesses, according to investigative findings by the House Committee on Oversight and Reform.

Why it matters: The Oversights Committee released its findings Wednesday ahead of a hearing on workplace misconduct in the NFL, where Snyder has declined to testify over due process concerns.

Snyder has been accused of sexual harassment and of creating a hostile work environment at the Commanders. He has denied such allegations.

What they’re saying: “Lawyers for Mr. Snyder used their shadow investigation to create a 100-slide dossier with private emails, text messages, telephone records, and social media posts from journalists, victims, and witnesses who had made credible public accusations of harassment against the Commanders,” The Oversight Committee claimed.

“Mr. Snyder’s lawyers had direct access to the NFL and the law firm conducting the investigation, and secretly shared information from their shadow investigation in an apparent attempt to influence the Wilkinson investigation,” it said, referring to D.C. attorney Beth Wilkinson, who lead the league’s internal investigation into misconduct at the Commanders.The committee accused Snyder of not taking action against a member of the team’s coaching staff accused of groping a public relations employee.It also said he fired female employees who engaged in consensual relationships with male members of the team’s football operations, while male members did not face tangible punishments.

The big picture: NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is expected to testify under oath at Wednesday’s hearing.

He is expected to say in his opening testimony that “It is clear to me that the workplace in Washington was unprofessional and unacceptable in numerous respects: bullying, widespread disrespect toward colleagues, use of demeaning language, public embarrassment, and harassment.””No one should experience workplaces like the one they described, especially not in the National Football League. I can say to every victim unequivocally that their willingness to come forward has contributed to a substantially improved workplace.”