Reports just came out showing that Mueller's ultimate target isn't anyone who has already been indicted, but someone else entirely…
Special prosecutor Robert Mueller, hired after President Donald Trump fired former FBI director James Comey while invoking the Russia investigation as a reason, has been investigating Russian hacking of the 2016 election for months. Unlike Comey, Mueller said that he was also investigating any collusion the Trump campaign may have had with Russia.
Several important witnesses and dossiers have emerged from the investigation, but yesterday, official indictments were finally made.
Former Trump campaign foreign policy advisor George Papadopoulos pled guilty to lying to the FBI. His guilty plea establishes that Russian agents began reaching out to Trump's presidential campaign as early as March 2016, months before the election. Those reaching out to the campaign wanted to work together and offered dirt on Democratic nominee Hilary Clinton.
Papadopoulos was directly involved with that process and tried to set up meetings and contacts between Trump officials and Russians. According to released Justice Department court documents, Papadopoulos had several meetings and exchanged messages with at least two Russians. He is already cooperating with the FBI's investigation.
In addition to, former campaign manager Paul Manafort and top aide Rick Gates were indicted.
Manafort was charged on 12 counts, including conspiracy against the US and money laundering, related to his work as a lobbyist for a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine. Gates had the same charged brought against him. Both pled not guilty.
What's Happening Now:
Former Watergate prosecutor Nick Akerman commented on Mueller's tactic and said he has been working on the investigation skillfully while speaking on MSNBC.
Papadopoulos was arrested months ago, which means, according to Akerman, that Muller has had months to question him and encourage him to work with the prosecution against anyone else implicated within the Trump circle.
Additionally, Akerman said that everyone in Trump's circle should be concerned that Papadopoulos has already been working with Mueller and wearing a wire for months.
He also said that after reviewing the indictment against Manafort that he had no doubts the former campaign manager would be found guilty of his charges.
Papadopoulos pled guilty to all of his charges, which Akerman said makes it more likely that he has been working with Mueller to reveal other campaign officials who worked with Russia.
While Papadopoulos is a relatively small figure on the grand scale of those within the White House possibly connected with Russian hacking, if Mueller successfully used his guilty charge to flip him from the defense to the prosecution, he could use that as leverage to go after much higher officials and bring the whole thing crashing down.
Akerman said Mueller might lower some of Papadopoulos' sentencing or charges in order to get him to work against his friends in Trump's White House.
Even bigger, Akerman said Mueller might be able to flip Manafort and Gates as well.
Akerman also said that these indictments make it a lot harder for Trump to try and fire Mueller. With concrete evidence and charges like these, you can no longer call the investigation a witch hunt.
Trump sure is trying, however:
Sorry, but this is years ago, before Paul Manafort was part of the Trump campaign. But why aren't Crooked Hillary & the Dems the focus?????
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 30, 2017
All of this “Russia” talk right when the Republicans are making their big push for historic Tax Cuts & Reform. Is this coincidental? NOT!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 29, 2017
All of these suggestions have huge implications for the rest of the Russia investigation, and the future of the Trump campaign, so he should be paying very close attention.
H/T: Raw Story