Mueller using grand jury in DC as part of Russia probe

Dominique Dufresne
Août 13, 2017

Special Counsel Robert Mueller began using a grand jury in federal court in Washington several weeks ago as part of his investigation of possible coordination between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign, according to two people familiar with the inquiry.

It was not immediately clear how or whether the Washington grand jury was connected to the work of a separate one in Alexandria, Virginia.

A lawyer at the Squire Patton Boggs law firm and a former federal prosecutor, Thomas Zeno revealed to The Journal that the grand jury was "confirming that this is a very vigorous investigation going on". The Post has previously reported that Mueller is investigating whether the president tried to obstruct justice leading up to his firing of Comey.

The Wall Street Journal on Thursday first reported the existence of the Washington grand jury.

And it seems they're going to be looking at a lot more than that because if it was just Flynn, they would just be using the same grand jury. At least eight members of Mueller's team have associations with the Democratic Party or have a track record of making donations to Democratic candidates, including the presidential campaigns of Obama and Clinton.

A spokesman for Mueller, Joshua Stueve, refused to comment to the paper. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the decision before the announcement.

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"This is yet a further sign that there is a long-term, large-scale series of prosecutions being contemplated and being pursued by the special counsel", Stephen I. Vladeck, a law professor at the University of Texas, told the paper.

The S&P 500 gained 0.05 percent, hovering just below its record high touched last week, supported by upbeat earnings and rising expectations that the Federal Reserve's policy tightening will move ahead only slowly.

CNN, meanwhile, reported that the investigation was focusing on potential financial crimes. "This suggests that the investigation is bigger and wider than Flynn, perhaps substantially so".

Comey, in fact, admitted he leaked information about private details of conversations with the president to a friend, with instructions to give it to the media in the hope of triggering the appointment of a special prosecutor, which it did.

Ty Cobb, special counsel to the president, said he wasn't aware that Mueller had impaneled a grand jury.

Jim Justice says he's switching parties to join the Republicans as President Donald Trump visited the increasingly conservative state. Mueller also had previously worked in the U.S. attorney's office in D.C., giving him some familiarity with the courthouse and the judges. "The White House favors anything that accelerates the conclusion of his work fairly".

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The special counsel team took over the investigation when Mueller was appointed in May, and prosecutors from the Eastern District of Virginia were largely taken off the case.

Trump has publicly warned Mueller that his financial dealings should be out of bounds and investigating them would cross a red line. "The Russia story is total fabrication".

Hersh accused former CIA Director John Brennan, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and current NSA Director Michael Rogers of peddling "disinformation".

SHAPIRO: Put this into context for us.

Hersh ascribed a simple motive to the alleged subterfuge by top spies: They wanted to keep their jobs by assuring Clinton won the presidential election. "You know, they're done - they're going to live on their pensions, they're not going to make it".

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