During the Russiagate investigation, the FBI relied on Michael Sussmann, who worked for Hillary Clinton’s campaign, and allegedly lied to its agents by claiming that the accusations of apparent collusion between Donald Trump and Russia came from the Justice Department.
As Sussmann’s trial continues in a DC federal court for allegedly lying to the FBI, new revelations are coming to light that are tarnishing Clinton’s campaign and casting doubt, once again, on the veracity of Russiagate.
Special prosecutor John Durham brought Sussmann before a jury to determine whether he lied to the FBI. Durham believes the Clinton campaign created and used false information about Trump in order to mislead voters. If found guilty of lying to the FBI, the Clinton lawyer could be fined and face years in prison.
According to the New York Post, Durham prosecutors disclosed that FBI investigators had received an electronic communication citing a referral from the Justice Department about Sept. 19, 2016, on the same day Sussmann met with James Baker, then the FBI’s top lawyer.
The electronic communication circulated among several senior FBI officials and it said that the Justice Department provided the FBI with a “white paper” suggesting that a server owned by the Trump Organization was communicating with the Alfa Bank organization, based in Moscow, Russia.
Later, when field agents wanted to dig deeper and interview the source who sent the communication, FBI agent Ryan Gaynor preferred to withhold Sussmann’s identity, but claimed he was unaware at the time that the lawyer worked for the Clinton campaign.
On the one hand, special counsel John Durham accused Sussmann of falsely telling the bureau that he had brought the Alfa Bank tip in his personal capacity and not on behalf of his clients. However, Sussmann’s defense team points out that the FBI was well aware of his ties to the Democratic Party.
So far, Sussmann’s trial has relied on the testimony of several high-profile witnesses, including Democratic Party lawyer Marc Elias; former Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook; and former high-ranking FBI officials.
The man who also lied to the FBI and who framed Trump in Russiagate
On November 4, Russian analyst Igor Danchenko was arrested and charged with five counts of lying to the FBI in the case related to Trump and Russia. He is the third person to be indicted in the Durham investigation, which is charged with dismantling the narrative of alleged Russian interference in the U.S. election campaign.
Danchenko was a crucial player in crafting the false story about Trump and the Kremlin in order to win the White House.
Durham alleges that Danchenko lied about how he gathered information related to the “Steele dossier,” a document containing allegations of supposed misconduct and collaboration involving Trump, his election team, and the Russian government surrounding the 2016 presidential election.