Correction: A previous version of this story, relying on an incorrect report, said Special Counsel John Durham used the word “infiltrate” to describe the actions. Durham’s filing used the word “exploited.” The headline has been changed.
Special Counsel John Durham, who is investigating the origins of the FBI’s Trump-Russia probe, says in a new court filing that operatives linked to the Clinton campaign “exploited” access to internet traffic linked to several Trump properties, purportedly as part of an effort to connect Donald Trump to Russia.
The revelation was made in a court filing late last week that centered on potential conflicts of interest connected to the representation of former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussman, who has been charged with allegedly lying to the FBI.
Fox News reported:
The indictment against Sussman says he told then-FBI General Counsel James Baker in September 2016, less than two months before the 2016 presidential election, that he was not doing work “for any client” when he requested and held a meeting in which he presented “purported data and ‘white papers’ that allegedly demonstrated a covert communications channel” between the Trump Organization and Alfa Bank, which has ties to the Kremlin.
But Durham’s filing on Feb. 11, in a section titled “Factual Background,” reveals that Sussman “had assembled and conveyed the allegations to the FBI on behalf of at least two specific clients, including a technology executive (Tech Executive 1) at a U.S.-based internet company (Internet Company 1) and the Clinton campaign.”
The filing says that Sussman and the tech executive had met and been in contact with another lawyer who was working for the Clinton campaign.
The filing says that during the summer of 2016, the tech executive worked with Sussman, an investigative firm retained by a law firm on behalf of the Clinton campaign, and employees at tech companies to gather “data.”
“In connection with these efforts, Tech Executive-1 exploited his access to non-public and/or proprietary Internet data,” the filing states. “Tech Executive-1 also enlisted the assistance of researchers at a U.S.-based university who were receiving and analyzing large amounts of Internet data in connection with a pending federal government cybersecurity research contract.”
“Tech Executive-1 tasked these researchers to mine Internet data to establish ‘an inference’ and ‘narrative’ tying then-candidate Trump to Russia,” Durham states. “In doing so, Tech Executive-1 indicated that he was seeking to please certain ‘VIPs,’ referring to individuals at Law Firm-1 and the Clinton campaign.”
Fox News added:
Durham also writes that during Sussman’s trial, the government will establish that among the Internet data Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited was domain name system (DNS) internet traffic pertaining to “(i) a particular healthcare provider, (ii) Trump Tower, (iii) Donald Trump’s Central Park West apartment building, and (iv) the Executive Office of the President of the United States (EOP).”
The tech company that the tech executive worked for “had come to access and maintain dedicated servers” for the Executive Office of the President as “part of a sensitive arrangement whereby it provided DNS resolution services to the EOP,” the filing said. “Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited this arrangement by mining the EOP’s DNS traffic and other data for the purpose of gathering derogatory information about Donald Trump.”
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