An attorney who represented Hillary Clinton’s failed 2016 presidential campaign was indicted on Thursday for allegedly lying to federal law enforcement officials during a 2016 meeting about who he was representing when he presented information about Trump and Russia to the bureau.
“Michael Sussmann, a partner with Perkins Coie who also represented the Democratic National Committee in connection with Russia’s hack of the organization, is accused of making false statements during a Sept. 19, 2016 meeting with former FBI General Counsel James Baker,” Reuters reported. “This marks the second criminal case Durham has filed so far since former Attorney General William Barr tapped him in 2019 to investigate U.S. officials who probed the Trump-Russia contacts.”
According to a New York Times article from Wednesday, speaking with James Baker, “Sussmann relayed data and analysis from cybersecurity researchers who thought that odd internet data might be evidence of a covert communications channel between computer servers associated with the Trump Organization and with Alfa Bank, a Kremlin-linked Russian financial institution.”
“The F.B.I. eventually decided those concerns had no merit. The special counsel who later took over the Russia investigation, Robert S. Mueller III, ignored the matter in his final report.”
As The Daily Wire reported when news of a possible indictment broke:
Durham reportedly found that Sussmann told [James] Baker during the meeting in 2016 that he was not representing any client when he sought the meeting. However, in a 2017 deposition before Congress, Sussmann testified that he sought the meeting on behalf of an unnamed client who specializes in cybersecurity.
“Sussmann’s lawyers told The New York Times that they expect their client to be indicted and claim that he is innocent,” The Daily Wire added at the time.
The indictment reads in part:
During the meeting, SUSSMANN lied about the capacity in which he was providing the allegations to the FBI. Specifically, SUSSMANN stated falsely that he was not doing his work on the aforementioned allegations “for any client,” which led the FBI General Counsel to understand that SUSSMANN was acting as a good citizen merely passing along information, not as a paid advocate or political operative. In fact, and as alleged in further detail below, this statement was intentionally false and misleading because, in assembling and conveying these allegations, SUSSMANN acted on behalf of specific clients, namely, (i) a U.S. technology industry executive … at a U.S. Internet company … and (ii) the Hillary Clinton Presidential Campaign.
SUSSMANN’s lie was material because, among other reasons, SUSSMANN’s false statement misled the FBI General Counsel and other FBI personnel concerning the political nature of his work and deprived the FBI of information that might have permitted it more fully to assess and uncover the origins of the relevant data and technical analysis, including the identities and motivations of SUSSMANN’s clients.
This article has been expanded after publication to include additional information.
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