Hudlin Entertainment Forum

Politics => Vox Populi => Topic started by: imchills on June 15, 2017, 12:49:21 pm

Title: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: imchills on June 15, 2017, 12:49:21 pm
House of Cards has become real.

Quote
WASHINGTON—President Donald Trump’s firing of former FBI Director James Comey is now a subject of the federal probe being headed by special counsel Robert Mueller, which has expanded to include whether the president obstructed justice, a person familiar with the matter said.

Mr. Mueller is examining whether the president fired Mr. Comey as part of a broader effort to alter the direction of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s probe into Russia’s alleged meddling in the 2016 presidential election and whether associates of Mr. Trump colluded with Moscow, the person said.

Mark Corallo, a spokesman for Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer, Marc Kasowitz, denounced the revelation in a statement.

“The FBI leak of information regarding the president is outrageous, inexcusable and illegal,” Mr. Corallo said.

Mr. Trump’s reaction to the new turn in Mr. Mueller’s inquiry came early Thursday morning in the form of a tweet. He suggested that he is unhappy with the focus on obstruction of justice, given that he believes there was no underlying crime.

“They made up a phony collusion with the Russians story, found zero proof, so now they go for obstruction of justice on the phony story. Nice,” Mr. Trump wrote.

Aides to Mr. Trump have warned him not to tweet about the Russia investigation, an inquiry in which any statement he makes could become fodder for investigators.

Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mr. Mueller, declined to comment. The special counsel’s pursuit of an obstruction of justice probe was first reported Wednesday by the Washington Post.

Mr. Mueller’s team is planning to interview Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers as part of its examination of whether Mr. Trump sought to obstruct justice, the person said.

The special counsel also plans to interview Rick Ledgett, who recently retired as the deputy director of the NSA, the person added.

While Mr. Ledgett was still in office, he wrote a memo documenting a phone call that Mr. Rogers had with Mr. Trump, according to people familiar with the matter. During the call, the president questioned the veracity of the intelligence community’s judgment that Russia had interfered with the election and tried to persuade Mr. Rogers to say there was no evidence of collusion between his campaign and Russian officials, they said.

Russia has denied any government effort to meddle in the U.S. election. Mr. Ledgett declined to comment, and officials at the NSA didn’t respond to a request for comment. An aide to Mr. Coats declined to comment.

Mr. Coats and Mr. Rogers told a Senate panel June 7 that they didn’t feel pressured by Mr. Trump to intervene with Mr. Comey or push back against allegations of possible collusion between Mr. Trump’s campaign and Russia. But the top national security officials declined to say what, if anything, Mr. Trump requested they do in relation to the Russia probe.

“If the special prosecutor called upon me to meet with him to ask his questions, I said I would be willing to do that,” Mr. Coats said June 7. Mr. Rogers said he would also be willing to meet with the special counsel’s team.

Mr. Comey told a Senate panel on June 8 that Mr. Trump expressed “hope” in a one-on-one Oval Office meeting that the FBI would drop its investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn, who resigned under pressure for making false statements about his conversations with a Russian diplomat. Mr. Trump has denied making that request.

Mr. Comey said during the testimony that it was up to Mr. Mueller to decide whether the president’s actions amounted to obstruction of justice. The former FBI director also said he had furnished the special counsel with memos he wrote documenting his interactions with the president on the matter.

At a June 13 hearing at a House of Representatives panel, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein declined to say who asked him to write a memo justifying Mr. Comey’s firing. The White House initially cited that memo as the reason for the termination, and Mr. Trump later said in an NBC interview that he also was influenced by the Russia investigation. Mr. Rosenstein said he wasn’t at liberty to discuss the matter.

“The reason for that is that if it is within the scope of Director Mueller’s investigation, and I’ve been a prosecutor for 27 years, we don’t want people talking publicly about the subjects of ongoing investigations,” Mr. Rosenstein said.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/mueller-probe-examining-whether-donald-trump-obstructed-justice-1497490897 (https://www.wsj.com/articles/mueller-probe-examining-whether-donald-trump-obstructed-justice-1497490897)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on October 27, 2017, 06:40:11 pm
It begins...


The first charges have been officially filed in the Mueller Russia probe.

It's gonna be a long weekend.  :)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Hypestyle on October 27, 2017, 07:40:27 pm
indict them all.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on October 28, 2017, 11:03:53 am
indict them all.


I agree, Hype.

I'm reading inside several online discussion forums that I frequent daily and there are posters engaged in betting pools who the "...first catch of the day!" might be brought out in handcuffs escorted by law enforcement on Monday. 

Is it the founder of wikileaks?
Is it the Russian spies that made contact with drumpf tower?
Is it manafort?
Is it...?

Here's what we do know...
--- it's a lil' more than coincidence that the one's that skipped town (race & puppetine) to go f___k with the North Koreans did so to avoid the October Surprise.  ;D
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on October 30, 2017, 06:45:20 am
(https://i.imgur.com/D4xCzV0.gif)In the news, indictment unsealed.



Release from Special Counsel:

Paul J. Manafort, Jr., 68, of Alexandria, Va., and Richard W. Gates III, 45, of Richmond, Va., have been indicted by a federal grand jury on Oct. 27, 2017, in the District of Columbia. The indictment contains 12 counts: conspiracy against the United States, conspiracy to launder money, unregistered agent of a foreign principal, false and misleading FARA statements, false statements, and seven counts of failure to file reports of foreign bank and financial accounts.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on October 30, 2017, 08:28:56 am
(https://i.imgur.com/D4xCzV0.gif) But wait, there's more...

According to Bloomberg News:

A former foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign, George Papadopoulos, secretly pleaded guilty as part of Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.


Papadopoulos had suggested that Donald Trump meet with top Russian leaders during the campaign. He pleaded guilty to making false statements during an interview with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.





Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-10-30/trump-foreign-policy-adviser-pleaded-guilty-in-mueller-probe (https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-10-30/trump-foreign-policy-adviser-pleaded-guilty-in-mueller-probe)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on January 26, 2018, 05:04:29 am
On cover-ups:

"No one in the White House staff, no one in this administration, presently employed, was involved in this very bizarre incident.

What really hurts in matters of this sort is not the fact that they occur, because overzealous people in campaigns do things that are wrong.

What really hurts when they try to cover it up."


President richard nixon, at the beginning of the Watergate affair.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on January 29, 2018, 05:34:41 am
I'm in agreement w/Congressman  Ted Lieu of California regarding employing extra safeguards for the Office of Special Council by introducing legislation that allows the Office of Special Council to transfer the entire matter to a 3 - panel judge should the acting president takes action by terminating Robert Mueller conducting the Russia investigation.

After all, cadet bone spur* applied for 5 deferments to make sure he wouldn't go fight in the Vietnam  war, it is only prudent that Congress take extra steps to insure that the Russia investigation continues undisturbed, as well.





*Thanks Senator Duckworth
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on January 29, 2018, 04:33:41 pm
Earlier today, a Russian fighter jet made a pass towards an American surveillance aircraft within a few feet!

Now, the White House announces that puppetine has decided not to renew sanctions against Russia.

Make of that what you will but it looks like America just got punked.

Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on January 30, 2018, 05:29:21 am
Yo...

If the Office of Special Council calls devin nunes in for questioning, the action will be funnier than the best Richard Pryor joke.  :)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 16, 2018, 10:55:02 am
Special counsel issues indictment against 13 Russian nationals over 2016 election interference
by Manu Raju, David Shortell and Veronica Stracqualursi

(https://i.imgur.com/fxcWTyJ.jpg)



(CNN) — Special counsel Robert Mueller has indicted 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities for allegedly meddling in the 2016 presidential election, charging them with conspiracy to defraud the United States, the Department of Justice has announced.

In addition, three defendants were charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, and five defendants with aggravated identity theft.

Mueller has been investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election as well as any connections between Russia and Trump campaign associates.





Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/16/politics/mueller-russia-indictments-election-interference/index.html (https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/16/politics/mueller-russia-indictments-election-interference/index.html)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Hypestyle on February 16, 2018, 03:25:54 pm
finally.  So all the indicted are currently in Russia?  I imagine there won't be any extradition.

next up needs to be the American collaborators.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 16, 2018, 05:12:19 pm
If the Department of Justice and the puppetine administration were playing Magic The Gathering, this is the card that Special counsel Robert Mueller put into play: one of the most baddest cards in the entire series... A card that allows the player to constantly present threats to the opponent, even when the opponent tries to remove it.

(https://i.imgur.com/dNGEQ2k.jpg)

Recurring Nightmare

- - - puppetine's worst nightmare has just been realized.  Yes, the Russians did interfere in the 2016 presidential elections and may have involved the acting-president.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 17, 2018, 03:54:43 am
...and now, a word from this sponsor:  All of the symbolism in this television ad speaks for itself.

(https://i.imgur.com/46bHfzB.jpg)

"You're On FIYA!!!"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PU0pHjgCDHs (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PU0pHjgCDHs)


So much for that military parade for yourself, puppetine.  ;D
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 17, 2018, 02:36:28 pm
Big things come inside small packages... (https://i.imgur.com/ok4cNV6.png)
The official Mueller investigation part I. 
Required reading material for those interested in developing the next movie script [read: RedJack, Supreme & Mr. Hudlin 8)] based on this 'reality show'.



Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.justice.gov/file/1035477/download (https://www.justice.gov/file/1035477/download)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 18, 2018, 10:39:47 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/SDhi3SI.gif) Another pawn will fall!

Former Trump Aide Rick Gates Will Plead Guilty To Mueller Probe Charges
by Nick Visser

February 18, 2018

(https://i.imgur.com/PZzf7QA.jpg)

Muh-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-HAH-HAH-HAA-A-AH!!!


Rick Gates, a former campaign aide to President Donald Trump, will plead guilty to charges related to fraud and is willing to testify against his longtime business partner, Paul Manafort, The Los Angeles Times reported on Sunday.

Speculation has grown for weeks that Gates would cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing inquiry into Russian meddling in the presidential election. Gates, who served as Trump’s deputy campaign manager, was indicted in October along with Manafort on charges ranging from money laundering to violations of foreign lobbying laws. He pleaded not guilty to all charges at the time, which carry 10 years or more in potential sentences.

The plea will reportedly change in the coming days, and Gates will likely serve about 18 months in prison in exchange for his cooperation, the Times reported.

“Rick Gates is going to change his plea to guilty,″ a source familiar with the case told the outlet.


Would you Like To Know More?
https://www.yahoo.com/news/former-trump-aide-rick-gates-010752198.html (https://www.yahoo.com/news/former-trump-aide-rick-gates-010752198.html)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 19, 2018, 08:29:12 am
(https://i.imgur.com/j63Hs3T.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 20, 2018, 02:56:37 pm
Ladies & gentlemen of HEF, may I invite you to remember this familiar cast of characters sitting at this Russian roundtable for future reference.

(https://i.imgur.com/VbHkC4M.jpg)




Meanwhile, back in the good ol' Divided States of America...
(https://i.imgur.com/SDhi3SI.gif) This time a Rook was taken!

Mueller charges lawyer with lying about interaction with Rick Gates

By Katelyn Polantz and Marshall Cohen

February 20, 2018

(https://i.imgur.com/Nx43eMc.jpg)



Washington (CNN) — Special counsel Robert Mueller has charged a lawyer with allegedly lying to investigators about covering up his discussions about Ukraine with former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates and another person in September 2016, while the Trump campaign operation was in full swing.





Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/20/politics/robert-mueller-rick-gates/index.html (https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/20/politics/robert-mueller-rick-gates/index.html)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 22, 2018, 04:37:53 pm
The 2018 Winter Olympics at PyeongChang, South Korea

(https://i.imgur.com/2Z0BBky.jpg)

Ladies’ free skate in Figure Skating and a trio of Short Track finals.  Bradie Tennell, Mirai Nagasu, and Karen Chen compete for Team USA.

Tonight on NBC at 8:00 pm EST

Check your local listings!





Would You Like To Know More?
http://www.nbcolympics.com/medals (http://www.nbcolympics.com/medals)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 23, 2018, 03:59:06 pm
"A fisherman always sees another phishrman from afar." --- Gordon Gecko, WALL STREET: MONEY NEVER SLEEPS

(https://i.imgur.com/7ELKzaN.jpg)(https://i.imgur.com/oPbNBIe.jpg)

Rick Gates, Trump Campaign Aide, Pleads Guilty in Mueller Inquiry and Will Cooperate

By MARK MAZZETTI and MAGGIE HABERMAN

FEB. 23, 2018

(WASHINGTON D.C.)
— A former top adviser to Donald J. Trump’s presidential campaign pleaded guilty on Friday to fraud and lying to investigators in the special counsel inquiry into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and will cooperate with the investigation.

The adviser, Rick Gates, is a longtime political consultant who once served as Mr. Trump’s deputy campaign chairman. The plea deal could be a significant development in the investigation — a sign that Mr. Gates plans to offer incriminating information against his longtime associate and the former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, or other members of the Trump campaign in exchange for a lighter punishment. He faces up to nearly six years in prison.

Appearing with his attorney in a Washington courtroom on Friday afternoon, Mr. Gates changed his plea, acknowledging that he participated in the financial conspiracy with Mr. Manafort.




(https://i.imgur.com/GgLi5dw.jpg)

"There's always a bigger fish!" --- Qui-Gon Jinn,  Star Wars: EPISODE I: The Phantom Menace

Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/23/us/politics/rick-gates-guilty-plea-mueller-investigation.html (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/23/us/politics/rick-gates-guilty-plea-mueller-investigation.html)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 25, 2018, 06:26:24 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/Ft9MpaU.gif)  "Anyone keeping score?"

(https://i.imgur.com/m9GuA93.jpg)

The Score Card (so far)

According to VOX, Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team has either indicted or gotten guilty pleas from 19 people and three companies so far — with most of those being announced just in the past two weeks.



Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/2/20/17031772/mueller-indictments-grand-jury (https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/2/20/17031772/mueller-indictments-grand-jury)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 27, 2018, 05:48:41 pm
2nd Quarter Solicits (Apr - June 2018)

(https://i.imgur.com/PAzxgZr.jpg)

DICK TRUMPY #45
VLADIMIR PUTIN(W)
PAUL MANAFORT(A)
"WE FINALLY DEFEATED USA!!!"

The Plot: The acting-president, dick trumpy proclaims, "Witch Hunt!" regarding the Russian investigations. Meanwhile, more and more indictments and guilty pleas in the puppetine regime are expected to come from the Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team.

Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 01, 2018, 03:09:40 am
(https://i.imgur.com/XAXDkUE.gif)
High above the Mar-a-Lago Club, drumpf receives a signal from Parkland, Florida's coward county petty officer scott isreal!


(https://i.imgur.com/tozpogu.jpg)

"This Looks Like A Job For More BS!"
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 18, 2018, 10:18:17 am
This comment is coming from an American 4 star General:

(https://i.imgur.com/fP5v6hw.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Reginald Hudlin on March 20, 2018, 09:35:27 am
love this thread!  the editorial cartoons really spice it up!
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 16, 2018, 01:15:52 pm
(http://i.imgur.com/cb8P8FP.gif)"Beauty Kills the Beast!"

Michael Cohen, puppetine’s Lawyer, Appears at Manhattan Court Hearing
AND
Stephanie Clifford, known professionally as Stormy Daniels, Appears at Manhattan Court Hearing
by ALAN FEUER

Monday APRIL 16, 2018

(https://i.imgur.com/Lzda4GI.jpg)

Michael D. Cohen, the acting-President’s embattled lawyer, appeared in a courtroom in Manhattan on Monday as prosecutors and Mr. Cohen’s lawyer continued to argue over the fruits — and future — of the extraordinary raids that federal agents conducted last week on Mr. Cohen’s office, home and hotel room.

Last week, Mr. Cohen ignored an initial hearing in the case, opting instead to smoke cigars in the sun outside the Loews Regency Hotel, a move that prompted Judge Kimba Wood of Federal District Court in Manhattan to tell his lawyer to make sure Mr. Cohen was present at the next court appearance. Mr. Cohen was not alone at Monday’s the hearing: The adult film star Stephanie Clifford, better known as Stormy Daniels, was at the courthouse as well, setting the stage for a remarkable face-to-face confrontation.

The issue before Judge Wood is, at least for now, a relatively narrow one: Who should be the first to read the seized material and thus be in a position to decide if any of them should be excluded from the case and avoid further scrutiny — the taint team, a special master appointed by the court, or Mr. cohen and puppetine themselves?

It remained unclear on Monday morning if the judge would rule from the bench or issue a written decision at another time.






Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/16/nyregion/michael-cohen-court-hearing.html (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/16/nyregion/michael-cohen-court-hearing.html)

...but wait!  There's more!(https://i.imgur.com/8vofFrZ.gif)"The slop thickens!"

(https://i.imgur.com/iYyTFJI.jpg)

SEAN HANNITY NAMED!

by The Associated Press

Monday APRIL 16, 2018

Acting-President emperor puppetine's personal attorney has been forced to reveal that another of his clients is fox news host Sean Hannity.

Lawyers for michael cohen argued in court on Monday that they could not identify hannity because he asked that his name not be disclosed in connection with an FBI seizure of cohen's files. But Judge Kimba Wood made one of the lawyers identify him in open court.

The hearing in a New York City courtroom stems from a surprise raid this month on Cohen's home and office.



Would You Like To Know More?
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/latest-trumps-attorney-raids-54501296 (http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/latest-trumps-attorney-raids-54501296)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 24, 2018, 05:54:21 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/SDhi3SI.gif)
CHECK...
MOVE YOUR KING!
by Josh Gerstein

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2018

(https://i.imgur.com/ExtXjRE.jpg)

Special counsel Robert Mueller is fighting a drive by media organizations to unseal secret court filings relating to searches and surveillance efforts undertaken as part of the investigation into possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia in the 2016 election.

While lawyers for acting-president drumphf have suggested in recent weeks that the inquiry appears to be winding down, Mueller’s prosecutors submitted a court filing on Wednesday that painted a very different picture of an investigation that is moving forward on multiple fronts and could be jeopardized by premature disclosure of the records sought by news outlets.

Here's an excerpt:

GOVERNMENT'S RESPONSE TO MOTION FOR PUBLIC ACCESS TO CERTAIN SEALED COURT RECORDS

The United States of America, by and through Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller, III, files this response to the motion by a coalition of five media companies to unseal search warrant materials and other court records in the Special Counsel’s investigation. 

The movants seek unsealing of (1) the warrants, applications, supporting affidavits, and returns relating to all search, seizure, and Stored Communications Act warrants pertaining to the Special Counsel’s investigation into Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election; and (2) certain records from the pending prosecution in United States v. Manafort, No. 17-cr-201-ABJ (D.D.C.), including sealed hearing transcripts.

The request for broad unsealing of search warrant materials should be denied.

The Special Counsel’s investigation is not a closed matter, but an ongoing criminal investigation with multiple lines of non-public inquiry.  No right of public access exists to search warrant materials in an ongoing investigation.





Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.politico.com/story/2018/05/23/mueller-media-secret-filings-607111 (https://www.politico.com/story/2018/05/23/mueller-media-secret-filings-607111)

https://www.politico.com/f/?id=00000163-8fa0-d71a-ad7f-cff7cc490000 (https://www.politico.com/f/?id=00000163-8fa0-d71a-ad7f-cff7cc490000)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 13, 2018, 10:44:04 am
(https://i.imgur.com/R1kg087.jpg)



Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.justice.gov/file/1080281/download (https://www.justice.gov/file/1080281/download)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Reginald Hudlin on July 29, 2018, 09:37:04 am
so much crazy stuff happens with this case there could and should be a new post every day!
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 30, 2018, 07:41:25 am
so much crazy stuff happens with this case there could and should be a new post every day!





You're are absolutely right, Mr. Hudlin!

I'm being careful of redundancies in each case. I want to make sure that each report is extreme enough to reach a certain checkpoint leading into the overall event that is the 2018 Mid-Term Elections. 
(https://i.imgur.com/D4xCzV0.gif)
For example, mr. Manafort, drumphf's former campaign manager is about to start his trial this week while he is under solitary confinement and we're fast approaching August 2018. 
(https://i.imgur.com/D4xCzV0.gif)
There's drumphf's lawyer, michael cohen who is starting to break by admitting to authorities that drumphf did, indeed, knew about that 2016 trump tower meeting in advance.
(https://i.imgur.com/D4xCzV0.gif)
Michael Avenatti, Ms. Daniels lawyer, is motivated and confident about his findings in his case.

There is a show about to go on this Fall, sir!  :)

...and check this out:
Why is Robert Mueller and Drumphf Jr seen waiting in the same airport terminal for flights?
by Chris Riotta



(https://i.imgur.com/Pcq7gYj.jpg)

Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/donald-trump-jr-robert-mueller-photo-reagan-national-airport-washington-special-counsel-russia-a8467026.html (https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/donald-trump-jr-robert-mueller-photo-reagan-national-airport-washington-special-counsel-russia-a8467026.html)

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/27/us/politics/donald-trump-jr-mueller-airport.html (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/27/us/politics/donald-trump-jr-mueller-airport.html)




(https://i.imgur.com/D4xCzV0.gif)(https://i.imgur.com/D4xCzV0.gif)(https://i.imgur.com/D4xCzV0.gif)
The news cycle is lil' slow right now...  (https://i.imgur.com/pQIDIIO.png)
When these months roll in, watch how quickly the news pace picks up

...September...


...October...

*******WARNING*******  OCTOBER SURPRISE IMMINENT!!!**********

November 
(https://i.imgur.com/v9ahcrw.gif) 2018 Mid-Term Elections (https://i.imgur.com/v9ahcrw.gif)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on August 21, 2018, 02:05:52 pm
paul Manafort found guilty on 8 counts and michael cohen plead guilty on 8 counts.

(https://i.imgur.com/3M6KsqT.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Hypestyle on August 22, 2018, 12:03:04 pm
I'm wondering why it was only eight counts that Manafort was found guilty of.  Were the rest not guilty or mistrials?
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Curtis Metcalf on August 23, 2018, 06:01:05 am
Mistrial on the other 10 counts. Apparently there was one holdout on the jury.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on August 23, 2018, 02:33:15 pm
Political cartoonist & daily comic strip artist, Darrin Bell is experimenting with animation, yo!

(https://i.imgur.com/oiAwiux.jpg)


Would You Like To See More?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gKa-1s69CMg (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gKa-1s69CMg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on September 14, 2018, 08:44:31 am
paul manafort pleads guilty on 2 counts.

(https://i.imgur.com/blXA3mm.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on October 17, 2018, 09:05:51 am
Wednesday, 17th October 2018

Mueller Ready to Deliver Key Findings in His Puppetine Probe, Sources Say*

by Chris Strohm , Greg Farrell , and Shannon Pettypiece

(https://i.imgur.com/bBOGXxH.jpg)




Special Counsel Robert Mueller is expected to issue findings on core aspects of his Russia probe soon after the November midterm elections as he faces intensifying pressure to produce more indictments or shut down his investigation, according to two U.S. officials.

Specifically, Mueller is close to rendering judgment on two of the most explosive aspects of his inquiry:

whether there were clear incidents of collusion between Russia and emperor puppetines’s 2016 campaign, and whether the acting-president took any actions that constitute obstruction of justice, according to one of the officials, who asked not to be identified speaking about the investigation.

That doesn’t necessarily mean Mueller’s findings would be made public if he doesn’t secure unsealed indictments.

The regulations governing Mueller’s probe stipulate that he can present his findings only to his boss, who is currently Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

The regulations give a special counsel’s supervisor some discretion in deciding what is relayed to Congress and what is publicly released.

The question of timing is critical.

Mueller’s work won’t be concluded ahead of the Nov. 6 midterm elections, when Democrats hope to take control of the House and end puppetine's one-party hold on Washington.

But this timeline also raises questions about the future of the probe itself.

emperor puppetine has signaled he may replace Attorney General jeff 'Granny' sessions after the election, a move that could bring in a new boss for Mueller.

Rosenstein also might resign or be fired by emperor puppetine after the election.

Rosenstein has made it clear that he wants Mueller to wrap up the investigation as expeditiously as possible, another U.S. official said.

The officials gave no indications about the details of Mueller’s conclusions.

Mueller’s office declined to comment for this story.



















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https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/mueller-ready-to-deliver-key-findings-in-his-trump-probe-sources-say/ar-BBOvb0s?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/mueller-ready-to-deliver-key-findings-in-his-trump-probe-sources-say/ar-BBOvb0s?ocid=spartanntp)

*For those who may not understand the movie reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stWbpMzj5WE (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stWbpMzj5WE)    :)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on November 14, 2018, 04:42:37 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/rde50fS.gif)"Wha..? ...huh?!"
Wednesday, 14th November 2018
ARRESTED!

(https://i.imgur.com/2jNKc9w.jpg)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Michael Avenatti, who skyrocketed to fame as a chief critic of emperor puppetine and the lawyer for porn actress Stormy Daniels, was taken into police custody Wednesday following an allegation of domestic violence, a law enforcement official told The Associated Press.



Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/official-michael-avenatti-in-los-angeles-police-custody/ar-BBPIkJO?ocid=spartandhp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/official-michael-avenatti-in-los-angeles-police-custody/ar-BBPIkJO?ocid=spartandhp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on November 20, 2018, 03:39:11 am
(https://i.imgur.com/rde50fS.gif)"...really!?!"
Tuesday, 20th November 2018
Domestic violence restraining order!
by Nancy Dillon

(https://i.imgur.com/irC2Yz6.jpg)

An actress is seeking a restraining order against Michael Avenatti after the prominent lawyer was arrested last week on suspicion of felony domestic violence.

Mareli Miniutti filed her petition Monday at the Santa Monica branch of Los Angeles County Superior Court, online court records show.
She was given a follow-up hearing date of Dec. 10.

Best known for representing porn star Stormy Daniels in her lawsuit against President Trump, Avenatti was arrested last Wednesday for allegedly assaulting an unidentified woman, authorities said.

Avenatti, 47, was cuffed by LAPD detectives and booked for felony domestic assault “on suspicion” he struck the unidentified woman last Tuesday, cops said.

He posted $50,000 bail and was released about four hours after his arrest.





Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/ny-actress-files-for-domestic-violence-restraining-order-against-michael-avenatti/ar-BBPTIjM?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/ny-actress-files-for-domestic-violence-restraining-order-against-michael-avenatti/ar-BBPTIjM?ocid=spartanntp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on November 23, 2018, 04:05:49 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/9RIthFM.gif)"Oh, no you don't!"
Friday, 23rd November 2018
DENIED!
by Jonathan Stempel

NEW YORK CITY — A New York state judge has rejected U.S. President Donald Trump's request to dismiss a lawsuit in which New York's attorney general accused him of misusing his personal charity to benefit his 2016 presidential campaign and his businesses.

In a decision made public on Friday, Justice Saliann Scarpulla of the state supreme court in Manhattan said Attorney General Barbara Underwood could pursue claims alleging breach of fiduciary duty, improper self-dealing, and misuse of assets of the Donald J. Trump Foundation.

(https://i.imgur.com/PvTaAQs.jpg)

Trump's adult children — Donald Jr., Eric and Ivanka — are also defendants in the case, which began on June 14. Ivanka Trump is also a senior aide to her father.

The White House was not immediately available for comment. Alan Futerfas, a lawyer for the defendants, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Underwood said she welcomed Scarpulla's decision.

"The Trump Foundation functioned as little more than a checkbook to serve Mr. Trump's business and political interests," Underwood said in a statement. "There are rules that govern private foundations — and we intend to enforce them."


Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-loses-bid-to-dismiss-new-york-lawsuit-over-his-charity/ar-BBQ1BrT?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-loses-bid-to-dismiss-new-york-lawsuit-over-his-charity/ar-BBQ1BrT?ocid=spartanntp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 06, 2018, 03:21:44 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/DcayYko.gif)"Bitch!"
Thursday, 6th December 2018
Michael Avenatti settles alimony, child support with ex-wife, will hand over Ferrari and private jet
by Kate Feldman, New York Daily News

(https://i.imgur.com/2jNKc9w.jpg)

The celebrity lawyer and his estranged wife, Lisa Storie-Avenatti, have settled their messy child and spousal support battle.

Avenatti reportedly agreed to cut a $40,000 check to his ex for child support and another in January, a stark departure from previous figures that added up to almost $2 million.


The difference will come with fly things like five luxury wristwatches...

(https://i.imgur.com/qS2Oe5A.jpg)

...and his 2017 Ferrari 488 GT Spider lease...

(https://i.imgur.com/8jjfmqn.jpg)

...and his law firm's share of a 2016 Honda private jet.

(https://i.imgur.com/hKie71H.jpg)



The couple were married in May 2011 and split in December.




Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/personalfinance/michael-avenatti-settles-alimony-child-support-with-ex-wife-will-hand-over-ferrari-and-private-jet-report/ar-BBQzidY?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/personalfinance/michael-avenatti-settles-alimony-child-support-with-ex-wife-will-hand-over-ferrari-and-private-jet-report/ar-BBQzidY?ocid=spartanntp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 08, 2018, 12:16:22 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/f8UeA7k.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 09, 2018, 11:05:47 am
(https://i.imgur.com/kEtTvY9.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 12, 2018, 05:10:00 am
All eyes are on the Southern District of New York.
(https://i.imgur.com/Me7Pxd4.gif)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 12, 2018, 06:15:28 am
Meanwhile...

Wednesday, 12th December 2018
Incoming New York attorney general plans wide-ranging investigations of Individual-1 and family
by Allan Smith

(https://i.imgur.com/jXSAtkX.jpg)

New York Attorney Gen.-elect Letitia James says she plans to launch sweeping investigations into Individual-1, his family and "anyone" in his circle who may have violated the law once she settles into her new job next month.

"We will use every area of the law to investigate Individual-1 and his business transactions and that of his family as well," James, a Democrat, told NBC News in her first extensive interview since she was elected last month.

James outlined some of the probes she intends to pursue with regard to Individual-1, his businesses and his family members. They include:

Any illegalities involving Individual-1's real estate holdings in New York, highlighting the October New York Times investigation into the president's finances.

The June 2016 Ivory Tower meeting with a Russian official.

Examine government subsidies Individual-1 received, which were also the subject of Times investigative work.

Whether he is in violation of the emoluments clause in the U.S. Constitution through his New York businesses.

Continue to probe the Individual-1 Foundation.

"We want to investigate anyone in his orbit who has, in fact, violated the law," said James, who was endorsed by and will serve in the administration of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has been mentioned as a possible 2020 Democratic contender but insists he won't run.

James campaigned on passing a bill to change New York's double jeopardy laws with an eye on possible pardons coming out of the Executive Mansion. James told NBC News she wants to be able to pursue state charges against anyone the president were to pardon over federal charges or convictions and whose alleged crimes took place in the state. Under current New York law, she might not be unable to do that.

"I think within the first 100 days this bill will be passed," she said, adding, "It is a priority because I have concerns with respect to the possibility that this administration might pardon some individuals who might face some criminal charges, but I do not want them to be immune from state charges."

She's also enlisting help from some prosecutorial heavy hitters, like former U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, as a part of her transition to help her identify important hires for her office with an eye on bringing in experts for its Individual-1 related investigations.

New York is home to Individual-1's namesake business, the Individual-1 Organization, and it is where Individual-1's presidential campaign was headquartered and his reelection campaign as well. And it is where a number of key events under special counsel Robert Mueller's microscope, such as the controversial June 2016 Ivory Tower meeting, took place.

All of that falls within James' jurisdiction.

As a result, she is about to become one of the most recognizable — and powerful — state attorneys general in the country.

"Taking on Individual-1 and looking at all of the violations of law I think is no match to what I have seen in my lifetime," James said.

Currently the city's public advocate for a few more weeks, James is set to take over for New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood. She was appointed to fill in for the remainder of Eric Schneiderman's term after he resigned earlier this year following accusations of sexual misconduct.

The most prominent litigation between the attorney general's office and the acting-President involves the Individual-1 Foundation. Schneiderman began probing the charity in 2016 and Underwood later filed the lawsuit against Individual-1, his adult children and the foundation in June.

The foundation is accused of engaging in illegal political coordination with the Individual-1 campaign, self-dealing and violating legal obligations. The Individual-1 and the foundation could face millions of dollars in penalties as a result. Individual-1's lawyers tried and failed to have the case thrown out in New York state Supreme Court, alleging the probe was politically motivated.

Underwood also was investigating whether Individual-1 has violated the emoluments clause of the U.S. Constitution, which generally prohibits federal officials from receiving gifts or payments from foreign or state governments.

The Executive Mansion, Individual-1 Organization, an attorney representing the company and Individual-1 attorney Rude Ghouliani did not respond to requests for comment.

Harvard Law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz told NBC News that the acting-president has "considerably more vulnerability" when faced with New York state investigations because he can't hold out the offer of pardons or fire investigators, though he said James' scope would be limited to matters occurring before Individual-1 became acting-president.

He added that it remains an open question as to whether a sitting acting-president can be charged with a state crime.

For her part, James said she thinks Mueller's "doing an excellent job."

"I think he's closing in on this acting-president," she said, "and his days are going to be coming to an end shortly."




Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/incoming-new-york-attorney-general-plans-wide-ranging-investigations-of-trump-and-family/ar-BBQQ0Oa?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/incoming-new-york-attorney-general-plans-wide-ranging-investigations-of-trump-and-family/ar-BBQQ0Oa?ocid=spartanntp)

Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 12, 2018, 09:22:27 am
Wednesday, 12th December 2018
GOTCHA!!!
Michael Cohen sentenced to 3 years in prison

(https://i.imgur.com/vkg5OZL.jpg)

According to CBS news, former Individual-1 attorney Michael Cohen has been sentenced by a federal judge in Manhattan to three years in federal prison and ordered to pay a $50,000 fine plus $1.39 million in restitution.

Prosecutors had recommended a "substantial term of imprisonment" for Cohen, who pleaded guilty to both lying to Congress over a possible Ivory Tower Moscow project, and to campaign finance violations for paying women who alleged affairs with Individual-1.




Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/michael-cohen-sentencing-in-federal-court-12-12-2018-today-live-updates/ (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/michael-cohen-sentencing-in-federal-court-12-12-2018-today-live-updates/)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 12, 2018, 09:58:50 am
(https://i.imgur.com/Mxhq9Ok.gif)"I wonder who may be next?"
After Michael Cohen was sentenced to 3 years of federal prison time...
 
(https://i.imgur.com/WSv1WE6.jpg)

---the acting-vice president is making plans for the future.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 12, 2018, 10:14:17 am
Anyone else remembers this infamous exchange between CNN's Brianna Keiler and Michael Cohen during the presidential campaign run?

(https://i.imgur.com/lPGQKhr.jpg)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWLZES3u8xU (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWLZES3u8xU)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 12, 2018, 10:35:34 am
...but wait.   There's more!  On the other side of the world...
British Prime Minister Theresa May is in the process of a confidence vote that will determine her resignation or be voted out of office.

(https://i.imgur.com/ZTcWdFi.png)

...or she might stay in power. Maybe.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 12, 2018, 12:52:51 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/DlFKt9Y.gif)

(https://i.imgur.com/sSsE0zE.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 18, 2018, 06:22:21 am
All eyez are on the U.S. District Court in Washington D.C.
(https://i.imgur.com/Me7Pxd4.gif)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 18, 2018, 02:07:44 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/94mKIol.jpg)

Today's ruling: Judge Delays Flynn Sentencing
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on January 25, 2019, 09:01:05 am
Friday, 25th January 2019
STONE COLD BUSTED!
by Mahita Gajanan

(https://i.imgur.com/ZBlsCx5.jpg)

Roger Stone, a longtime adviser to acting-President donald trump, was arrested Friday in connection with the special counsel’s Russia investigation.

Stone faces a seven-count indictment, with charges including obstruction, witness tampering and making false statements related to his contacts with WikiLeaks, the organization responsible for the release of hacked Democratic emails in the 2016 presidential election.

FBI agents took Stone into custody from his home in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. on Friday morning.

CNN video footage of the FBI arresting Stone shows a group of agents approaching his home.
 
(https://i.imgur.com/jOIQ2Sa.jpg)

After a knock, one agent says, “FBI. Open the door,” before adding, “FBI. Warrant.”

FBI agents are currently working without pay, and many are furloughed due to the partial government shutdown.

Stone is scheduled to appear in court in Florida later on Friday.






Would You Like To Know More?
http://time.com/5513027/roger-stone-arrest-fbi/ (http://time.com/5513027/roger-stone-arrest-fbi/)

Would You Like To See More?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWTzCNY7_YY (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWTzCNY7_YY)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 20, 2019, 03:57:53 pm
Wednesday, 20th February 2019
Justice Department preparing for Mueller report in coming days
by Devlin Barrett, Josh Dawsey and Matt Zapotosky

(https://i.imgur.com/CT7mOBr.jpg)

Justice Department officials are preparing for the end of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s nearly two-year investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and believe a confidential report could be issued in coming days, according to people familiar with the discussions.

The special counsel’s investigation has consumed Washington since it began in May 2017, and it increasingly appears to be nearing its end, which would send fresh shock waves through the political system.

Mueller could deliver his report to Attorney General William P. Barr next week, according to a person familiar with the matter who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive deliberations.

Regulations call for Mueller to submit to the attorney general a confidential explanation as to why he decided to charge certain individuals, as well as who else he investigated and why he decided not to charge those people.

The regulations then call for the attorney general to report to Congress about the investigation.

An adviser to President Trump said there is palpable concern among the president’s inner circle that the report might contain information about Trump and his team that is politically damaging, but not criminal conduct.

Even before he was confirmed by the Senate, Barr had preliminary discussions about the logistics surrounding the conclusion of Mueller’s inquiry, a second person said.

At that time, though, Barr had not been briefed on the substance of Mueller’s investigation, so the conversations were limited.

CNN first reported Wednesday that Mueller could send a report to Barr as early as next week.

A spokesman for Mueller declined to comment, as did a Justice Department spokeswoman.

How detailed either Mueller’s report and the attorney general’s summary of the findings will be is unclear.

Lawmakers have demanded that Mueller’s report be made public, but Barr has been noncommittal on that point, saying that he intends to be as forthcoming as the regulations and department practice allow.

He has pointed, however, to Justice Department practices that insist on saying little or nothing about conduct that does not lead to criminal charges.

The special counsel’s office, which used to have 17 lawyers, is down to 12 now, and some of those attorneys have recently been in touch with their old bosses about returning to work, according to people familiar with the discussions.

All but four of the remaining 12 lawyers are detailed from other Justice Department offices.

The end of the special counsel’s probe would not mean the end of criminal investigations connected to the president.

Federal prosecutors in New York, for instance, are exploring whether corrupt payments were made in connection with Trump’s inaugural committee funding.

If Mueller does close up shop, government lawyers on his team would likely return to their original posts, but would be able to continue to work on the prosecution of cases initiated by the special counsel’s office.

That was the case for two special counsel lawyers, Brandon Van Grack and Scott Meisler, who have left the office formally but are still working on cases begun by Mueller.

When the special counsel brought the case against Roger Stone, a longtime Trump adviser and friend, for lying to the FBI, attorneys from the U.S. attorney’s office in Washington were assigned to it from the start — an indication that Mueller expects to hand off the investigation soon.

The four prosecutors remaining who aren’t part of the Justice Department are some of the special counsel’s highest-ranking lawyers:

Aaron Zebley, who is effectively Mueller’s chief of staff; James Quarles, who is a senior executive in the office; Jeannie Rhee, the lead prosecutor in the case against Michael Cohen, Trump’s former personal attorney; and Greg Andres, the lead prosecutor in the trial of Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman.

According to people familiar with the special counsel’s work, Mueller has envisioned it as an investigative assignment, not necessarily a prosecutorial one, and for that reason does not plan to keep the office running to see to the end all of the indictments it has filed.

Mueller’s work has led to criminal charges against 34 people.

Six Trump associates and advisers have pleaded guilty.

Among those who have pleaded guilty are Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael R. Flynn; former deputy campaign manger Rick Gates; and former campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, as well as Manafort and Cohen.

Most of the people charged in Mueller’s investigation are Russians. Because there is no extradition treaty with that country, those 26 individuals are unlikely to ever see the inside of a U.S. courtroom.

None of the Americans charged by Mueller are accused of conspiring with Russia to interfere in the election.

Determining whether any Trump associates had plotted with the Kremlin in 2016 was the central question assigned to Mueller when he got the job, in a moment of crisis for the FBI, the Justice Department and the country.

Days earlier, Trump had fired FBI Director James B. Comey.

The purported reason for the dismissal was Comey’s handling of the 2016 investigation of Hillary Clinton, but Trump said in an interview with NBC shortly after the firing that he was thinking about the Russia inquiry when he decided to fire Comey.

Because FBI directors are appointed to 10-year terms to ensure their political independence, the Comey firing rattled Washington, setting off alarms not just in the Justice Department but in Congress, where lawmakers feared the president was determined to end the Russia investigation before it was completed.

In the wake of Comey’s firing, Deputy Attorney General Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein chose Mueller as special counsel in part to quell the burgeoning political crisis.

Mueller, a Vietnam War veteran, prosecutor and former FBI director, was highly regarded.

Politicians on both sides of the aisle — as well as law enforcement and intelligence veterans within federal agencies — had long admired and trusted Mueller, a Republican.

Trump has repeatedly denounced the Mueller investigation as a “witch hunt” and accused Mueller’s prosecutors of political bias because a number of them had made donations to Democratic candidates in the past.

Some congressional Republicans who back the president have repeatedly attacked Mueller’s work as corrupted by anti-Trump bias among Comey and his senior advisers at the FBI.

When Mueller’s investigation ends, it is likely to set off a fresh political firestorm.

Democrats are already demanding a detailed public accounting of what Mueller found, beyond what is in the public indictments and trial evidence to date.

Republicans, meanwhile, are poised to escalate their attacks on the special counsel’s work as a waste of time and money — and paint the end of the investigation as final proof that there was nothing to the suspicion that the Trump campaign colluded with the Kremlin.

Much of Mueller’s time was spent trying to determine whether the president attempted to obstruct the investigation.

Toward that end, Mueller questioned those closest to the president about his private statements about the inquiry, his public tweets that attacked law enforcement officials, and internal White House documents that might shed light on Trump’s behavior.

Months and months of negotiations over a possible interview of Trump came to little.

Ultimately, Mueller and the Justice Department did not serve the president with a subpoena, which could have led to a fight at the Supreme Court, and Trump’s lawyers submitted written answers to questions from the special counsel.





Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/justice-department-preparing-for-mueller-report-in-coming-days/2019/02/20/c472691c-354b-11e9-af5b-b51b7ff322e9_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.d28b5ef15e11 (https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/justice-department-preparing-for-mueller-report-in-coming-days/2019/02/20/c472691c-354b-11e9-af5b-b51b7ff322e9_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.d28b5ef15e11)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 21, 2019, 02:36:26 pm
Thursday, 21st February 2019
A Stone Turned
by Rachel Weiner and Manuel Roig-Franzia
 
(https://i.imgur.com/ENlJnBJ.jpg)

A federal judge ordered that longtime Republican operative and Trump confidant Roger Stone may not speak publicly about the investigation or case against him.

Judge Amy Berman Jackson in Washington said it would be “foolhardy” to wait for Stone to transgress again in the wake of an Instagram post that appeared to show her photo near crosshairs and suggested both she and the special counsel were biased.

“I’m not giving you another chance,” she said. “I have serious doubts whether you’ve learned any lesson at all.”

(https://i.imgur.com/NGu9j3d.gif)

If he violates the order in any way, Jackson said, she would order him to jail.



Would You Like to Know More?
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/roger-stone-due-back-in-court-after-instagram-post-that-showed-judge-in-his-case/2019/02/20/ee8d8e00-352a-11e9-af5b-b51b7ff322e9_story.html?utm_term=.4d0410fd644e (https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/roger-stone-due-back-in-court-after-instagram-post-that-showed-judge-in-his-case/2019/02/20/ee8d8e00-352a-11e9-af5b-b51b7ff322e9_story.html?utm_term=.4d0410fd644e)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 27, 2019, 02:05:48 am
Tuesday, 26th February 2019
Dasvidaniya!
by Tom Winter

(https://i.imgur.com/RGeynnP.jpg)

Former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen has been disbarred and may no longer practice law. (https://i.imgur.com/O1sAc03.gif)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 27, 2019, 07:04:10 am
(https://i.imgur.com/Co2k0vW.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 27, 2019, 08:48:07 pm
Wednesday, 27th February 2019
Matt Gaetz Under Investigation By Florida State Bar Over Michael Cohen Threat
by  Lachlan Markay & Sam Stein

(https://i.imgur.com/yq0Bavt.jpg)

The Florida Bar has opened an investigation into whether Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) violated professional conduct rules by threatening former Trump fixer Michael Cohen ahead of Cohen’s congressional testimony on Wednesday.

The organization, which licenses lawyers to practice in the state, would not disclose details of the investigation, but bar counsel Chuck Hughes confirmed to The Daily Beast that a probe is underway based on a complaint received from a member of the general public.

Reached by text on Wednesday, Gaetz said he had not “seen anything like that.”

Gatez, a licensed Florida attorney and ally of President Donald Trump, came under fire on Tuesday for a tweet that appeared to threaten Cohen with personal retribution over his testimony, which alleged that Trump is a “racist” and a “con-man” who participated in criminal activity during the 2016 presidential campaign.

"Hey @MichaelCohen212,” Gaetz wrote in a since-deleted tweet. “Do your wife & father-in-law know about your girlfriends? Maybe tonight would be a good time for that chat. I wonder if she’ll remain faithful when you’re in prison. She’s about to learn a lot..."

Gaetz initially defended the missive, saying: “This is what it looks like to compete in the marketplace of ideas.”

Under pressure, he later apologized, saying “it was NOT my intent to threaten, as some believe I did.”

According to Florida Bar guidelines, once the bar’s grievance committee decides that the alleged conduct might have violated ethics guidelines, attorneys have 15 days to respond to complaints against them.

Attorneys for the bar then investigate the matter.

If the grievance committee finds probable cause to believe that a violation took place, it then refers its findings to the state supreme court, which then makes a ruling and, if applicable, apply sanctions.

Several lawyers made the argument that the congressman had, indeed, engaged in a form of witness intimidation by suggesting that something nefarious would happen to Cohen’s wife once he went to prison.
 
“It’s that last line that seems really problematic,” emailed Stephen Vladeck, a professor of law at the University of Texas School of Law, “‘She’s about to learn a lot…’ What is the test implied in that statement, as opposed to the insinuation that as a result of his testimony, his wife is going to come into negative information about him?”

The Florida Bar Association’s rules of professional conduct state that lawyers “should conform to the requirements of the law, both in professional service to clients and in the lawyer’s business and personal affairs” and “should use the law’s procedures only for legitimate purposes and not to harass or intimidate others.”

“While it is a lawyer’s duty, when necessary, to challenge the rectitude of official action, it is also a lawyer’s duty to uphold legal process,” the rules state.






Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/matt-gaetz-under-investigation-by-florida-state-bar-over-michael-cohen-threat/ar-BBUazjN?ocid=spartandhp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/matt-gaetz-under-investigation-by-florida-state-bar-over-michael-cohen-threat/ar-BBUazjN?ocid=spartandhp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 12, 2019, 01:36:09 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/HkukV26.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 22, 2019, 05:54:12 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/ifHrfRi.png)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 23, 2019, 07:05:04 am
(https://i.imgur.com/07TyxpK.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 24, 2019, 01:12:17 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/mXr3AeS.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 24, 2019, 02:52:29 pm
Sunday, 24th March 2019
The Question the Mueller Report Has Not Answered:  WHY?
by David Frum

(https://i.imgur.com/WOsbtHZ.gif)

Good news, America.

Russia helped install your president.

But although he owes his job in large part to that help, the acting-president did not conspire or collude with his helpers.

He was the beneficiary of a foreign intelligence operation, but not an active participant in that operation.

He received the stolen goods, but he did not conspire with the thieves in advance.

This is what puppetine and its enablers in Congress and media are already calling exoneration.

But it offers no reassurance to Americans who cherish the independence and integrity of their political process.

The question unanswered by the attorney general’s summary of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report is:

Why?

Russian President Vladimir Putin took an extreme risk by interfering in the 2016 election as he did.
 

Had Hillary Clinton won the presidency, the most likely outcome, Russia would have been exposed to fierce retaliation by a powerful adversary.

The prize of a drumphf presidency must have glittered alluringly indeed to Putin and his associates.

Why?

Did they admire drumphf’s anti-NATO, anti-EU, anti-ally, pro-Assad, pro-Putin ideology?

Were they attracted by his contempt for the rule of law and dislike of democracy?

Did they hold compromising information about him, financial or otherwise?

Were there business dealings in the past, present, or future?

Or were they simply attracted by drumphf’s general ignorance and incompetence, seeing him as a kind of wrecking ball to be smashed into the U.S. government and U.S. foreign policy?

Many public-spirited people have counted on Robert Mueller to investigate these questions, too, along the narrowly criminal questions in his assignment.

Perhaps he did, perhaps he did not; we will know soon, either way.

But those questions have always been the important topics.

The drumphf presidency from the start has presented a national-security challenge first, a challenge to U.S. public integrity next. But in this hyper-legalistic society, those vital inquiries got diverted early into a law-enforcement matter.

That was always a mistake, as I’ve been arguing for two years.


Now the job returns to the place it always belonged and never should have left:

(https://i.imgur.com/ah6xlUY.jpg)

Congress.

This is all the more the case since the elections of 2018 restored independence to that body.

The 2016 election was altered by Putin’s intervention, and a finding that the drumphf campaign only went along for the ride does not rehabilitate the democratic or patriotic legitimacy of the Trump presidency.

drumphf remains a president rejected by more Americans than those who voted for him, who holds his job because a foreign power violated American laws and sovereignty.

It’s up to Congress to deal with this threat to American self-rule.

Mueller hasn’t provided answers, so much as he has posed a question:

Are Americans comfortable with this idiot in the White House, now that they know he broke no prosecutable criminal statutes on his way into high office?

(https://i.imgur.com/UsHGacR.gif)








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https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/03/mueller-report-leaves-one-key-question-unanswered/585625/?utm_term=2019-03-24T20%3A50%3A49&utm_campaign=the-atlantic&utm_content=edit-promo&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter (https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/03/mueller-report-leaves-one-key-question-unanswered/585625/?utm_term=2019-03-24T20%3A50%3A49&utm_campaign=the-atlantic&utm_content=edit-promo&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 26, 2019, 03:53:53 am
Sunday, 24th March 2019
Lowered Barr
by Neal Kumar Katyal

(https://i.imgur.com/t0sR94x.jpg)

On Sunday afternoon, soon after Attorney General bill barr released a letter outlining the Mueller investigation report, acting-president drumphf tweeted "Total EXONERATION!" but there are any number of reasons the acting-president should not be taking on a victory lap.

First, obviously, he still faces the New York investigations into campaign finance violations by the drumphf team and the various investigations into the drumphf empire.

And Mr. barr, in his letter, acknowledges that the Mueller report "does not exonerate" drumphf on the issue of obstruction, even if it does not recommend an indictment.

But the critical part of the letter is that it now creates a whole new mess.

After laying out the scope of the investigation and noting that Mr. Mueller's report does not offer any legal recommnedations, Mr. barr declares that it therefore "leaves it to the attorney general to decide whether the conduct decribed in the report constitutes a crime."

He then concludes the president did not obstruct justice when he fired the F.B.I. director, James Comey.

Such a conclusion would be momentous in any event.

But to do so within 24 hours of recieving the report (which pointedly did not reach that conclusion) should be deeply concerning to every American.

The special counsel regulations were written to provide the public with confidence that justice was done.

It is impossible for the public to reach that determination without knowing two things.

First, what did the Mueller report conclude, and what was the evidence on obstruction of justice?

And second, how could Mr. Barr have reached his conclusion so quickly?

Mr. barr's letter raises far more questions than it answers, both on the facts and the law.

His letter says that Mr. Mueller set "out evidence on both sides of the question and leaves unresolved what the special counsel views as 'difficult issues' of law and fact concerning whether the acting-president's actions and intent could be viewed as obstruction."

Yet we don't know what those "difficult issues" were, because Mr. barr doesn't say, or why Mr. Mueller, after deciding not to charge on conspiracy, let Mr. barr make the decision on obstruction.

On the facts, Mr. barr says that government would need to prove that drumphf acted with "corrupt intent" and there were no such actions.

But how would Mr. barr know?

Did he even attempt to interview drumphf to interview drumphf about his intentions?

What kind of prosecutor would even make a decision about someone's intent without even trying to talk to him?

(https://i.imgur.com/giBE3xY.jpg)

Particularly in light of Mr. Mueller's pointed statement that his report does not "exonerate" drumphf. 

Mr. Mueller didn't have to say anything like that.

He did so for a reason.

And that reason may well be that there is troubling evidence in the substantial record that he compiled.

Furthermore, we do not know why Mr. Mueller did not try to force an interview with the acting-president.

The reason matters greatly.

Mr. Mueller could have concluded that interviews of sitting presidents for obstruction matters are better done within the context of a congressional impeachment investigation (perhaps because a sitting president cannot be indicted, the barr letter says this legal argument didn't influence Mr. barr's conclusion but again is pointedly silent as to Mr. Mueller).

Or Mr. barr could have concluded that the attorney general, not a special counsel, should carry out such an interview.

(https://i.imgur.com/XhEku9a.jpg)

The fact that Mr. barr rushed to judgement, within 48 hours, after a 22-month investigation, is deeply worrisome.

The opening lines of the obstruction section of Mr. barr's letter are even more concerning.

It says that the special counsel investigated "a number of actions by the acting-president --- most of which have been the subject of public reporting."




Please note: The article ends abrubtly here
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 26, 2019, 08:46:21 am
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Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: TripleX on March 26, 2019, 02:49:31 pm
I need someone to explain to me how your Campaign Manager can give Russians crucial polling data and it NOT be collusion.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 03, 2019, 09:52:37 am
Nifty Hustle

(https://i.imgur.com/1Pb6FId.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 09, 2019, 05:23:47 am
(https://i.imgur.com/t0sR94x.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/RSsKNgc.png)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 09, 2019, 06:39:51 pm
Monday, April Fools Day 2019
How Barr May Interpret What It Means to Withold "Grand Jury Information"
by Barbara McQuade

(https://i.imgur.com/9RIthFM.gif)

What is Attorney General William Barr doing with removing grand jury information from the Mueller report before disclosing it?

While rules govern grand jury secrecy, they contain room for interpretation.

Barr’s very decision to engage in this process to keep parts of the report hidden from Congress is a danger sign.

If Barr is using grand jury secrecy rules as a shield to prevent disclosure of the Mueller report, he may find himself suffering blowback from Congress and the public.

The Attorney General’s second letter regarding Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report stated that the report will be released to Congress and the public after Barr and his staff have made “redactions that are required.”
He lists four categories for redaction:

(1) grand jury material;

(2) material that potentially compromises intelligence source and methods;

(3) material that could affect “ongoing matters,” including ones the Special Counsel has referred to other parts of the Justice Department; and

(4) “information that would unduly infringe on the personal privacy and reputational interests of peripheral third parties.”

While any one of those categories might be interpreted broadly enough to conceal large swaths of Mueller’s findings, grand jury material is one that permits Barr great discretion in defining its scope.

In his first letter, Barr highlighted Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 6(e), which provides that an attorney for the government must not disclose a “matter occurring before the grand jury”—though with some relevant exceptions that Barr did not discuss.

Many reasons exist for grand jury secrecy – to prevent flight of a target, to insure deliberations free from interference, to prevent witness tampering, to promote candor from witnesses, and to protect the reputations of those under investigation who are not ultimately charged.

See United States v. Proctor & Gamble Co., 356 U.S. 677, 681, n. 6 (1959). As an “attorney for the government,” Barr has a legal obligation to comply with the rule.

Defining the Scope of Grand Jury Information

Certainly, grand jury witness testimony comes within the definition of a “matter occurring before the grand jury,” but some courts have defined the scope of the rule more broadly than that.

The D.C. Circuit, which likely controls here, has held that Rule 6(e) covers disclosure of “the identities of witnesses or jurors, the substance of testimony, the strategy or direction of the investigation, the deliberations or questions of the jurors, and the like.” SEC v. Dresser Industries, 628 F.2d 1368, 1382 (D.C. Cir. 1980).

That definition leaves a great deal of room for interpretation.

Some courts have taken the position that reports of interviews of witnesses in anticipation that they will testify before the grand jury qualify as matters occurring before the grand jury, that is, if that information “may reveal what occurred before the grand jury.”

Martin v. Consultants and Administrators, 966 F.2d 1078, 1097 (7th Cir. 1992).

Other courts have held that if the report of an interview was not itself presented to the grand jury, then the report does not become grand jury material. Anaya v. United States, 815 F.2d 1373, 1380 (10th Cir. 1987).

Barr’s initial letter to Congress from March 24 stated that Mueller’s team interviewed approximately 500 witnesses.

If Barr wanted to prevent the disclosure of the reports from these interviews, he could try to take the position that they were conducted in anticipation that the witnesses would testify before the grand jury, and redact from Mueller’s report the names of the witnesses and the substance of their statements.

He would face significant obstacles potentially including reports conducted for the counterintelligence investigation and those conducted before a grand jury ever formed.

But that is not to say Barr would not try this route, and, in the event the Department gets challenged in court, fight it out there.

Documents also may become 6(e) material when subpoenaed by a grand jury if they would reveal what the grand jury considered.

In Fund for Constitutional Government v. National Archives, 656 F.2d 856, 869 (D.C. Cir. 1981), the court included within the scope of 6(e) “documents considered by the grand jury.” Even pre-existing documents created for an independent purpose but subpoenaed by the grand jury may, in some cases, be covered by 6(e) where the documents are sought to discover what the grand jury obtained rather than for their own intrinsic value. United States v. Interstate Dress Carriers, Inc., 280 F.2d 52, 54 (2d Cir. 1960).

Barr could share the documents with Congress without violating 6(e), but the fact that they were obtained for a grand jury investigation is the part that would be secret.

According to Barr’s initial letter, Mueller’s grand jury issued 2,800 subpoenas.

Grand jury subpoenas are most often used to seek records from third parties, such as banks and service providers.

A single subpoena might yield thousands of pages of documents in response.

With 2,800 subpoenas served, Mueller and his team likely obtained thousands if not millions of pages of documents.

If the actual reason for the disclosure of the documents were to inform the public that they were obtained by the grand jury, the documents themselves or even a list of the documents could arguably be grand jury material covered by Rule 6(e).

If Barr takes this view, then he might redact reference to them in Mueller’s report.

Once again, the question is how far Barr tries to push the envelope within his zone of discretion.

A very expansive view of 6(e) protection could also prevent the disclosure of materials obtained in a search warrant.

Ordinarily, items obtained by search warrant are not considered matters occurring before the grand jury even if a grand jury is investigating the same subject.

In re Search Warrant for Second Floor Bedroom, 489 F.Supp. 207, 210 (D.R.I. 1980). However, the Fourth Circuit has stated that where a government agent used search warrants and subpoenas to obtain information indiscriminately, the official may become an “agent of the grand jury,” causing the materials to merge under the protection of 6(e).

In re Grand Jury Subpoena, 920 F.2d 235, 243 (4th Cir. 1990). Barr’s letter indicates that Mueller executed 500 search warrants, likely yielding voluminous documents.

If Barr were to take the aggressive Fourth Circuit approach to search warrant materials, then he could potentially try to shield from disclosure any reference to them.

Barr might consider even Mueller’s own analysis to be grand jury material protected by Rule 6(e). In Fund for Constitutional Government, 656 F.2d at 869, the court included within the scope of 6(e) “conclusions reached as a result of the grand jury investigations.”

One of the great curiosities about Mueller’s report is his failure to reach a conclusion as to whether President Trump obstructed justice.

Did Mueller believe that the evidence was inconclusive?

Or did he find that while the evidence was sufficient, he was unsure whether charges should be filed for obstruction of justice against the president as a matter of law in light of his role as head of the executive branch?

Or was he instead deferring to Congress to decide whether the evidence proved a high crime or misdemeanor for which impeachment is appropriate?

Of course, this presumes that evidence of obstruction was presented to the grand jury, which there is good reason to think it was not.

Many questions also abound over Mueller’s conclusion that the “investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”

If “conclusions reached as a result of the grand jury investigations” are broadly understood and protected from disclosure under Rule 6(e), then we might not learn the answers under an expansive reading by Barr of the rule’s requirements, or more properly we would not learn whether the grand jury considered the evidence.

Exceptions that Authorize Release of Grand Jury Information

One check on Barr’s discretion is the courts.

While Barr, as “an attorney for the government,” must adhere to the secrecy provisions of Rule 6(e), he could seek permission from the district court to disclose to Congress the grand jury material in Mueller’s report.

As Judge John Sirica noted in the Watergate case, once an investigation has ended, many grand jury secrecy considerations disappear.

“There is no need to protect against flight on anyone’s part, to prevent tampering with or restraints on witnesses or jurors, to protect grand jury deliberations, to safeguard unaccused or innocent persons with secrecy.”

In Re Report & Recommendation of June 5, 1972 Grand Jury, 370 F. Supp. 1219, 1229 (D.D.C. 1974). In deciding that the report of the grand jury investigating Watergate should be disclosed to Congress, the court noted that “secrecy must prevail during deliberations, and that any later disclosure will occur at the court’s discretion.” Id. at 1228.

Trial courts have discretion to disclose grand jury material “where the need for it outweighs the public interest in secrecy.”

Douglas Oil Co. v. Petrol Stops Northwest, 441 U.S. 211, 223 (1979).

Even if disclosing the report to the public compromises too much secrecy, Barr could make a more limited to request for disclosure only to Congress.

If Barr were looking for a way to disclose the report to Congress, he might also find authority under Rule 6(e)(3)(D).

That section permits an attorney for the government to disclose a grand jury matter involving counterintelligence to “any federal…official” to assist in that official’s duties, and permits disclosure of grand jury matters involving “grave hostile acts of a foreign power” or intelligence gathering by foreign powers to “any appropriate federal . . . government official” for the purpose of responding to such threats.

Mueller’s investigation has been characterized as, in part, a counterintelligence investigation, seeking to identify links between the Trump campaign and the Russian government.

So long as the content of the report satisfies the definition of this rule, members of the Senate and House intelligence committees may qualify as appropriate federal government officials, which the rule does not define.
The rule provides that the government official receiving the information may use it “only as necessary in the conduct of that person’s official duties.”

The attorney for the government could make this disclosure with only notice to, rather than permission from, the court.

Barr finds himself in a position of great power. He could use Rule 6(e) to try to conceal large portions of Mueller’s report.

If, however, he is committed to maximum transparency, as he pledged during his confirmation hearings, then he has a path to fulfilling that commitment by seeking court permission to disclose the report either to the public or Congress or by using any authority he has to provide the report to Congress with notice to the court.

For its part, Congress could request Barr reveal the criteria he is applying in making redactions—since the devil is in his exact interpretation of “grand jury information”—and why he has failed to use authority he possesses to skip the redaction process and provide the report to Congress under exceptions codified in the very rule he’s invoked for nondisclosure.

If Barr does not invoke the exceptions to grand jury secrecy and provide Mueller’s report, he may find himself defending a subpoena from Congress.

Instead, he could score political points for the administration by agreeing to an outcome that is inevitable anyway.
















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https://www.justsecurity.org/63470/how-barr-may-interpret-what-it-means-to-withhold-grand-jury-information (https://www.justsecurity.org/63470/how-barr-may-interpret-what-it-means-to-withhold-grand-jury-information)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 11, 2019, 03:30:46 am
Thursday, 11th April 2019
GOTCHA!!!
Julian Assange arrested by British police at Ecuadorean embassy

by Reuters

(https://i.imgur.com/LP0dqDt.jpg)

(London) - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was arrested by British police after they were invited into the Ecuadorean embassy where he has been holed up since 2012.

Police said they arrested Assange after being "invited into the embassy by the Ambassador, following the Ecuadorean government's withdrawal of asylum."















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Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 11, 2019, 02:17:09 pm
Thursday, 11th April 2019
Why the Charge Against Julian Assange Makes No Mention of Espionage or 2016 Russian Hacking
by Tessa Berenson

(https://i.imgur.com/noz9ygA.jpg)

Wikileaks is at the center of major questions in Robert Mueller’s investigation, including whether anyone involved in drumphf’s presidential campaign assisted the organization in releasing hacked materials. But the charge in the one-count indictment against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange unsealed on Thursday shortly after his arrest doesn’t speak to those questions or broader First Amendment issues.

In an indictment dated March 6, 2018, the United States charges Assange with one count of conspiracy to commit computer intrusion. The indictment alleges “that in March 2010, Assange engaged in a conspiracy with Chelsea Manning, a former intelligence analyst in the U.S. Army, to assist Manning in cracking a password stored on U.S. Department of Defense computers connected to the Secret Internet Protocol Network, a U.S. government network used for classified documents and communications.”

Conspiracy to commit computer intrusion, which violates the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, is the “meat and potatoes” in the world of computer crime, says Paul Rosenzweig, who teaches at the George Washington University School of Law and was deputy assistant secretary for policy at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. “Almost everybody that you see who’s charged with a computer fraud of some sort gets a charge that’s somewhere like this.”

This fits with the typical prosecutorial strategy of charging someone with a smaller, more easily provable crime in what could be a larger criminal context. “The conspiracy component of it can be pretty easy to prove, that there had to be some degree of coordination of efforts and action,” says Thomas Holt, a professor in the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University who is an expert in computer hacking. “So conspiracy is a way to… treat it as low-hanging fruit where you can at least demonstrate through email and other communications that they were working in some degree in concert to produce an outcome.”

Limiting the indictment against Assange to this one, narrower charge and not charging him with espionage leaves aside any First Amendment questions that could have been raised about Wikileaks publishing classified material. “There has been a lot of speculation that the U.S. would indict Assange merely for distributing classified material,” former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti wrote on Twitter.

“You have heard a lot of concern about that, and it is justified. Many legitimate press publications in the U.S. distribute classified material at times.”

But this indictment does not charge Assange with a crime related merely to the publication of the material.

Rosenzweig offers this analogy:

If a journalist has sources offering classified documents, the journalist can publish those documents and this indictment against Assange has no bearing on that. But if a source tells a journalist there are documents behind a locked door, and the journalist offers to help pick the lock, that’s when it becomes a crime. “You as a journalist have become engaged in a criminal enterprise in a way that’s different from normal journalist behavior,” Rosenzweig says of that scenario.

(https://i.imgur.com/30pjc0o.jpg)

This is where relevance to Mueller’s Russia investigation comes in. In 2016, hackers that the U.S. government believes to have been directed by the Russian government hacked the Democratic National Committee and Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta.

Batches of the hacked emails were released by Wikileaks. Mueller indicted Russian intelligence officers for crimes related to this operation, but he did not charge Assange.

There are two key relevant questions in Mueller’s investigation. The first is how the hacked material made its way from Russia’s Internet Research Agency to Wikileaks, and whether puppetine advisor Roger Stone or anyone else associated with the campaign was in that chain of custody. The second, related question is whether Stone or anyone else in the campaign assisted in targeting the hacking or selecting and timing the release of hacked material.

(Stone has been charged with lying to Congress and obstructing an investigation into his communications with Assange. Former drumphf lawyer Michael Cohen also testified that he was present for a July 2016 phone call during which Stone informed drumphf that Assange was planning to publish hacked Democratic emails.)

As in Rosenzweig’s analogy, if Stone or another member of the campaign simply knew about the information in advance, that likely wouldn’t be a crime. But if they conspired in the hack, that could be.

Attorney General William Barr has said Mueller’s investigation did not establish that anyone on the drumphf campaign conspired with Russia to influence the election.

For now, this single-count indictment against Assange for activity from nine years ago doesn’t seem to have direct bearing on lingering questions from the Mueller investigation. And Mueller hasn’t recommended any more charges to come directly from his office. But Assange and Wikileaks loom over multiple aspects of Mueller’s investigation, and more details may surface in the coming days when Barr releases a redacted version of the report.




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http://time.com/5568626/julian-assange-charge-conspiracy-computer/ (http://time.com/5568626/julian-assange-charge-conspiracy-computer/)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 14, 2019, 08:21:36 pm
Sunday, 14th April 2019
The Wait Is Almost Over For The (Almost) Full Mueller Report To Be Released
by Jessica Taylor

(https://i.imgur.com/II6Tgml.jpg)

Democrats in Congress and an overwhelming majority of the American public are eagerly awaiting the expected release this week of the Mueller report.

First came the wait for special counsel Robert Mueller to conclude his investigation on Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential election.

That happened three weeks ago, but after Attorney General William Barr released a four-page summary of the nearly 400-page report, there has been a new anticipation — and growing acrimony — for the report to be released to members of Congress and the public.

But even when the report is released, it's unlikely the politically divisive debate that has been the hallmark of President Trump's tenure in office will be resolved.

Barr's summary letter on March 24, two days after Mueller delivered his report to the new attorney general, was met with glee from the White House, as he wrote that the lengthy investigation did not find that the Trump campaign "conspired or coordinated with Russia in its efforts to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election."

The president and most Republicans saw that rundown of Mueller's major findings as "complete and total exoneration," even though Mueller did not take a position on whether Trump obstructed justice, given his comments and actions around the ongoing investigation.

Rather, Mueller's team wrote, according to Barr, that "while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him."

Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, however, concluded that Mueller's finding were "not sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction-of-justice offense."

But given what little Democrats have seen of Mueller's findings, they want more answers on exactly how the Justice Department came to that conclusion.

Barr said he would release more of the report but would need time to make the necessary redactions before it could be made public.

Key House Democrats didn't want to wait and had initially demanded it be made public by April 2.

But Barr responded, saying he thought he could complete any redactions by "mid-April, if not sooner," and the release anticipated for this week does hit that promised timeline.

However, soon after that update from Barr, the House Judiciary Committee, along a party-line vote, authorized a subpoena for the full report and its underlying investigative evidence.

Barr has said he's willing to testify before the House and Senate judiciary committees in early May.

Barr was on Capitol Hill last week testifying before a panel of the House Appropriations Committee on unrelated budget matters, and he was clear that he didn't want to talk much about the Mueller report — but Democrats certainly did.

The attorney general indicated that he would be open to negotiating with congressional leaders who want to see Mueller's underlying evidence once the report is released.

Then, the next day, before a panel of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Barr stoked a whole new controversy when he said he'd launched his own informal inquiry into the origins of the FBI's initial counterintelligence investigation into Russia and the 2016 Trump campaign, which began the summer of that year at the height of the White House race.

Trump has often pointed to this as evidence of bias, and Barr seemed to concur, saying that "spying did occur" on the then-nominee's campaign — a claim Trump has regularly made without evidence.

Later in the hearing, Barr clarified that he has no "specific evidence" of such surveillance but that he has "questions about it" and "concerns about various aspects of it."

All of that suggests the controversy is likely to be far from over even when the redacted, lengthy Mueller report is released.

















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https://www.npr.org/2019/04/14/712914976/the-wait-is-almost-over-for-the-almost-full-mueller-report-to-be-released?utm_source=twitter.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=20190414 (https://www.npr.org/2019/04/14/712914976/the-wait-is-almost-over-for-the-almost-full-mueller-report-to-be-released?utm_source=twitter.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=20190414)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 15, 2019, 08:15:27 am
Monday, 15th April 2019
Barr’s Playbook: He Misled Congress When Omitting Parts of Justice Dep’t Memo in 1989
by Ryan Goodman

(https://i.imgur.com/IE8bXgB.jpg)

On Friday the thirteenth October 1989, by happenstance the same day as the “Black Friday” market crash, news leaked of a legal memo authored by William Barr. He was then serving as head of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC). It is highly uncommon for any OLC memo to make headlines. This one did because it was issued in “unusual secrecy” and concluded that the FBI could forcibly abduct people in other countries without the consent of the foreign state. The headline also noted the implication of the legal opinion at that moment in time. It appeared to pave the way for abducting Panama’s leader, Gen. Manuel Noriega.

Members of Congress asked to see the full legal opinion. Barr refused, but said he would provide an account that “summarizes the principal conclusions.” Sound familiar? In March 2019, when Attorney General Barr was handed Robert Mueller’s final report, he wrote that he would “summarize the principal conclusions” of the special counsel’s report for the public.

When Barr withheld the full OLC opinion in 1989 and said to trust his summary of the principal conclusions, Yale law school professor Harold Koh wrote that Barr’s position was “particularly egregious.” Congress also had no appetite for Barr’s stance, and eventually issued a subpoena to successfully wrench the full OLC opinion out of the Department.

What’s different from that struggle and the current struggle over the Mueller report is that we know how the one in 1989 eventually turned out.

When the OLC opinion was finally made public long after Barr left office, it was clear that Barr’s summary had failed to fully disclose the opinion’s principal conclusions. It is better to think of Barr’s summary as a redacted version of the full OLC opinion. That’s because the “summary” took the form of 13 pages of written testimony. The document was replete with quotations from court cases, legal citations, and the language of the OLC opinion itself. Despite its highly detailed analysis, this 13-page version omitted some of the most consequential and incendiary conclusions from the actual opinion. And there was evidently no justifiable reason for having withheld those parts from Congress or the public.

When first asked by reporters about the OLC opinion that Friday, Barr said he could not discuss any of its contents. “I just don’t discuss the work of the office of legal counsel,” he said. “The office … provides legal advice throughout the Administration and does it on a confidential basis.”
The idea that Barr and the administration would not even discuss the content of the opinion could not withstand public pressure. Barr’s stance was especially untenable because his OLC opinion reversed a prior OLC opinion (an unusual event), and the Justice Department had released that prior opinion in full to the public just four years earlier.
President George H.W. Bush was asked about the Barr legal opinion at a news conference on the day the story broke. “The FBI can go into Panama now?,” a reporter asked in connection with the legal opinion. Bush responded that he was “embarrassed” not to know about the OLC opinion. “I’ll have to get back to you with the answer,” the president said.

Within hours, Secretary of State James Baker tried to make some reassuring public comments about the content of the OLC opinion. “This is a very narrow legal opinion based on consideration only of domestic United States law.” Baker said. “It did not take into account international law, nor did it weigh the President’s constitutional responsibility to carry out the foreign policy of the United States.”
It’s not known whether Baker had first cleared his statement with the Justice Department as is often the case for such matters. But his description of the OLC opinion would turn out to be not just misleading, but false.
The Chair of the House Judiciary Committee’s subcommittee on civil and constitutional rights, Rep. Don Edwards, then wrote to the Attorney General requesting the opinion, but he was rebuffed. An assistant attorney general wrote back. “We are unable to provide you with a copy of the 1989 opinion because it is the established view of the Department of Justice that current legal advice by the Office of Legal Counsel is confidential,” she stated. But there was no categorical prohibition, as Barr himself would later admit in testifying before Congress. The assistant attorney general’s letter itself included one glaring counterexample. “I am enclosing a copy of the 1980 opinion,” she wrote, and she noted that the Department had released the 1980 opinion to the public in 1985.

So why not release the 1989 opinion? Was there something to hide?

On the morning of Nov. 8, 1989, Barr came to Congress to testify before Rep. Edwards’ subcommittee. Some of the events that unfolded also bear a remarkable resemblance to Barr’s handling of the Mueller report to date.
First, Barr started out by saying that the history of internal Justice Department rules was a basis for not handing over the full opinion to Congress. “Chairman. Since its inception, the Office of Legal Counsel’s opinions have been treated as confidential,” Barr said.
That statement was misleading or false, and Chairman Edwards knew it.
Edwards quickly pointed out that the Department had released a compendium of opinions for the general public, including the 1980 one that Barr’s secret opinion reversed.

“Up until 1985 you published them, and I have it in front of me—‘Opinions of the Office of Legal Counsel’—the previous opinion.”

Barr retreated. “It has been the long established policy of OLC that except in very exceptional circumstances, the opinions must remain confidential,” Barr replied. The reference to “very exceptional circumstances” backtracked from what Barr had just said and what the letter sent to Rep. Edwards by the assistant attorney general had claimed.

But even the assertion that OLC opinions were released only in “very exceptional circumstances” could not withstand scrutiny. The Justice Department had shared OLC opinions with Congress on many occasions during the 1980s, as a letter by Rep. Edwards to the Justice Department later detailed.

Barr then pointed out his willingness to provide Congress with “our conclusions and our reasoning.” This was the 13-page written testimony which contained a detail recounting of the views expressed in the OLC opinion. Chairman Edwards complained that Barr had violated the rules of the House by submitting his written testimony only that same morning of the hearing, rather than 48 hours in advance. Barr’s timing meant that members of the committee and their staff were not well equipped to analyze or question the OLC’s analysis. But at least they had the OLC’s views in writing.

Or did they?

Barr’s description of the OLC’s views included that as a matter of domestic law the President has the authority to authorize actions by the FBI in foreign countries in violation of customary international law.
Without the benefit of the OLC opinion, Professor Koh explained how Barr could be hiding important matters by asking Congress and the public to trust just the 13-page version. Koh wrote:

“Barr’s continuing refusal to release the 1989 opinion left outsiders with no way to tell whether it rested on factual assumptions that did not apply to the earlier situation, which part of the earlier opinion had not been overruled, or whether the overruling opinion contained nuances, subtleties, or exceptions that Barr’s summary in testimony simply omitted."

Koh’s words proved prescient.

I am not the first to notice that Barr’s testimony omitted parts of the OLC opinion that would have earned the Justice Department scorn from the halls of Congress, legal experts, and the public.

Over one and a half years after his testimony, Congress finally subpoenaed Barr’s 1989 opinion. Another House Judiciary subcommittee issued the subpoena on July 25, 1991. The administration first resisted, but within a week agreed that members of Congress could see the full opinion. That same month, the Washington Post’s Michael Isikoff obtained a copy of the OLC opinion. The Clinton administration, within its first year in office, then published the OLC opinion in 1993 making it publicly available for the first time.

Omission 1: President’s authority to violate the U.N. Charter

Isikoff was drawn to a major issue that Barr had not disclosed in his testimony. The 1989 opinion asserted that the President could violate the United Nations Charter because such actions are “fundamentally political questions.”

That proposition is a very difficult one to sustain, and as Brian Finucane and Marty Lederman have explained, Barr was wrong. The 1989 opinion ignored the President’s constitutional duty to “take care” that US laws, including ratified treaties, be faithfully executed. And the opinion conflated the so-called political question doctrine, which is about whether courts can review an executive branch action, with the question whether an executive branch action is authorized or legal.

What’s more important for our purposes is not whether the 1989 opinion was wrong on this central point, but the fact that Barr failed to disclose this “principal conclusion” to Congress.

There was a reason Isikoff considered the conclusion about the U.N. Charter newsworthy. That’s because it had not been known before. The leading analysis of the Barr opinion is in a forthcoming article in Cornell Law Review by Finucane. He observes, “The members of the subcommittee appear to have been unaware of the opinion’s treatment of the U.N. Charter and the witnesses did not volunteer this information during the hearing.”

Professor Jeanne Woods, in a 1996 law review article in Boston University International Law Journal, also observed the large discrepancy between Barr’s 13-page testimony and what it failed to disclose. “Barr’s congressional testimony attempted to gloss over the broad legal and policy changes that his written opinion advocated.… A careful analysis of the published opinion, and the reasoning underlying it, however, reveals the depth of its deviation from accepted norms,” Professor Woods wrote.

Omission 2: Presumption that acts of Congress comply with international law

Woods also noted that the OLC opinion failed to properly apply the so-called “Charming Betsy” method for interpreting statutes. That canon of statutory construction comes from an 1804 decision, Murray v. The Schooner Charming Betsy, in which the Supreme Court stated, “an act of Congress ought never to be construed to violate the law of nations if any other possible construction remains.” In other words, Congress should be presumed to authorize only actions that are consistent with U.S. obligations under international law. As Professor Curtis Bradley has written, since 1804 “this canon of construction has become an important component of the legal regime defining the U.S. relationship with international law. It is applied regularly by the Supreme Court and lower federal courts, and it is enshrined in the black-letter-law provisions of the influential Restatement (Third) of the Foreign Relations Law of the United States.”

Barr’s opinion not only failed to apply the Charming Betsy presumption in favor of international law; the opinion applied what might be called a “reverse Charming Betsy.” Barr had reasoned that “in the absence of an explicit restriction” concerning international law, the congressional statute should be read to authorize the executive branch to violate international law. “Because, as part of his law enforcement powers, the President has the inherent authority to override customary international law, it must be presumed that Congress intended to grant the President’s instrumentality the authority to act in contravention of international law when directed to do so,” the opinion stated (emphasis added).

That part of the OLC’s analysis has not withstood the test of time. Indeed, there was good reason to keep it buried.

Omission 3: International law on abductions in foreign countries

Finally, Barr’s testimony failed to inform Congress that the 1989 opinion discussed international law.
Barr’s written testimony said that the opinion “is strictly a legal analysis of the FBI’s authority, as a matter of domestic law, to conduct extraterritorial arrests of individuals for violations of U.S. law.” During the hearing he added that “the opinion did not address … how specific treaties would apply in a given context.” The State Department’s legal adviser who appeared alongside Barr supported this characterization of the opinion by saying:

“The Office of Legal Counsel, as the office within the Department of Justice responsible for articulating the Executive Branch view of domestic law, recently issued an opinion concerning the FBI’s domestic legal authority to conduct arrests abroad without host country consent. Mr. Barr has summarized its conclusions for you. As Mr. Barr has indicated, that opinion addressed a narrow question — the domestic legal authority to make such arrests…. My role today is to address issues not discussed in the OLC opinion — the international law and foreign policy implications of a nonconsensual arrest in a foreign country."

But the OLC opinion had addressed some questions of international law and how a specific treaty—the U.N. Charter—might apply in such contexts. The 1980 opinion, which the 1989 one reversed, included strong statements about the international legal prohibition on abductions in other countries without the state’s consent. In analyzing Article 2(4) of the UN Charter, the 1980 opinion quoted from a famous United Nations Security Council resolution which condemned the abduction of Adolph Eichmann in Argentina by Israeli forces. The 1980 OLC opinion stated, “Commentators have construed this action to be a definitive construction of the United Nations Charter as proscribing forcible abduction in the absence of acquiescence by the asylum state.”

The OLC’s 1989 opinion took a very different view. It stated, “The text of Article 2(4) does not prohibit extraterritorial law enforcement activities, and we question whether Article 2(4) should be construed as generally addressing these activities.” The opinion also engaged in what many legal experts would consider controversial if not clearly wrong claims about international law. As one example, the 1989 opinion stated, “because sovereignty over territory derives not from the possession of legal title, but from the reality of effective control, logic would suggest there would be no violation of international law in exercising law enforcement activity in foreign territory over which no state exercises effective control.” The fact that the opinion had to resort to such a claim of “logic,” rather than jurisprudence or the practice and legal views of states, indicated its shallowness.

In fairness to Barr, these statements of international law were not the principal conclusions of the opinion. And, once again, it is not so relevant to our purposes whether these statements of law were wrong. What’s relevant is that Barr represented to Congress in his written and oral testimony that the OLC opinion did not address these legal issues, even though it did.

In the final analysis, Barr’s efforts in 1989 did not serve the Justice Department well. He had long left government service when the OLC opinion was finally made public. The true content of the opinion, given what Barr told the American people and testified before Congress, remains much to the discredit of the Attorney General.





Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.justsecurity.org/63635/barrs-playbook-he-misled-congress-when-omitting-parts-of-justice-dept-memo-in-1989/ (https://www.justsecurity.org/63635/barrs-playbook-he-misled-congress-when-omitting-parts-of-justice-dept-memo-in-1989/)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 16, 2019, 06:01:08 pm
Tuesday, 16th April 2019
Barr sowing public mistrust with Mueller report handling

by Josh Gerstein

(https://i.imgur.com/FG8SX4F.png)

Attorney General William Barr has created public distrust about whether the Justice Department is committed to sharing as much as possible about the Russia probe's findings, a federal judge said on Tuesday.

“The attorney general has created an environment that has caused a significant part of the public … to be concerned about whether or not there is full transparency,” U.S. District Court Judge Reggie Walton said during a hearing Tuesday afternoon on a Freedom of Information Act suit demanding access to a report detailing the findings of special counsel Robert Mueller.

Walton, an appointee of President George W. Bush, did not elaborate on what actions or statements by the attorney general have generated those perceptions.

Democrats and other critics have faulted Barr for adding his own conclusions favorable to the acting-President into a letter sent to Congress last month summarizing the top-line findings of the report.

In addition, Barr has warned that he plans to make redactions to the report on grounds such as privacy and grand jury secrecy, prompting more complaints.

But despite Walton’s criticism, he denied a request from BuzzFeed to issue a preliminary injunction requiring the Justice Department to release Mueller’s report by Thursday.

A Justice Department spokeswoman said Monday that the nearly 400-page report, with redactions, will be released that morning to Congress and the public.

However, the online media outlet pressed for an order requiring the release of the portions that must be disclosed under FOIA.

Matthew Topic, a lawyer for BuzzFeed, said at the hearing that putting a court order in place would speed up further litigation over whatever information is redacted from the report.

“The government claims it can make an open-ended extension with no specific deadline in mind,” Topic said.

Indeed, Justice Department attorney Courtney Enlow declined to say whether the version of the report made public Thursday will be identical to what the department releases under FOIA.

Nor could she say whether she’d be prepared to commit to that during another hearing set for May 2 on the BuzzFeed case and a related suit.

“I can’t give you a timeline,” Enlow said.

Walton previously declined to issue a deadline for the release of a broader set of Mueller-related records in a suit filed by the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a nonprofit privacy-advocacy group.

However, the judge said Tuesday that he plans to “fast track” the issue of the report and what information in it must be disclosed, then deal with other records from Mueller’s probe.

“We’d be dealing separately with the report,” said Walton.

He also said he’ll want to consider whether to order the government to give him an unredacted copy of the report so he can assess whether the redactions are proper.

“That’s something we will have to work through. I’ll have to think about it,” he said.

Walton said he hopes any disputes will be limited because the Justice Department makes the bulk of the document public.

“I would hope that the government is as transparent as it can be,” the judge said.




















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https://www.politico.com/story/2019/04/16/judge-barr-mistrust-mueller-1278030 (https://www.politico.com/story/2019/04/16/judge-barr-mistrust-mueller-1278030)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 17, 2019, 07:48:41 am
Tuesday, 9th April 2019
Legislators have a responsibility to police obstruction of justice, according to the US Constitution.
by Asha Rangappa

(https://i.imgur.com/1k31ePL.jpg)


News that Attorney General William Barr might have mischaracterized special counsel Robert Mueller’s final report on obstruction of justice by the acting-president has increased calls for Barr to release the report to Congress.

If Barr refuses to do so and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler issues a subpoena, we may be in for a separation of powers showdown — and a central question will be the legal basis upon which Congress is entitled to see the fruits of Mueller’s investigation.

(https://i.imgur.com/I0DODW4.jpg)

The argument for Congress obtaining Mueller’s full report on obstruction is typically based on its constitutional power to impeach:

Since Congress alone has the power to take action against the president, if he has broken the law or abused his power — which is true if the Justice Department adheres to its policy of not indicting a sitting president, even if it is not settled law — Congress would by necessity need to see the evidence Mueller has gathered to determine if impeachment is warranted.

If lawmakers weren’t able to see the report, then the president would effectively be immunized from accountability for wrongdoing while he is in office, putting him above the law.

This is a powerful argument in the battle that could ensue in the coming weeks.

But it overlooks an additional constitutional basis that Congress has for reviewing the president’s conduct:

Congress has a responsibility, rooted firmly in the Constitution, to safeguard the integrity of the justice system, including to prevent obstruction of justice.

Therefore, Mueller’s findings are as much about whether the acting-President has stepped on Congress’ toes as it is about whether he broke the law.

In contesting a subpoena from Congress, the Executive's Mansion likely will make its favorite defense, which is that the president, legally speaking, can’t obstruct justice.

(https://i.imgur.com/pSEkOMS.jpg)

This “unitary executive” theory rests on Article II of the Constitution, which gives the chief executive the power to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”
 
According to this view, this language means the president alone is in charge of which cases to pursue in the justice system:

If he decides to stop an investigation, that is his prerogative, and his reasons for doing so are beyond the purview of investigators, Congress and the courts.

A year before being confirmed as attorney general, Barr laid out an ancillary proposition in a long and rambling memo to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, arguing the president can’t be investigated for obstruction based on something that is, on its face, a valid exercise of his power — like firing the FBI director.

According to Barr, questioning the motives behind such an action would have disastrous consequences and open a Pandora’s box of potential inquisitions into “all exercises of prosecutorial discretion.”

The problem with this defense is that it conflates enforcement of the laws — a power that resides in the executive branch — with the administration of justice, which is constitutional responsibility that is shared by all three branches, including Congress.

When it comes to the administration of justice—and those who would thwart the integrity of that process—Congress has a big role to play.

(https://i.imgur.com/fEo8v2U.jpg)

The idea of obstruction of justice has its origins in an 1819 Supreme Court case, McCulloch v. Maryland (a case you might be familiar with if you’re a Hamilton fan), that challenged Congress’ power to create a national bank.

The court found that Congress’ authority to create a bank — even though not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution — stemmed from its power to create laws “necessary and proper” for executing its explicit powers, like collecting taxes, borrowing money and regulating commerce.

Importantly, the court noted that under the same reasoning, Congress could similarly pass laws which are “necessary and proper” to execute the powers of the other branches, as well.

As an example of the latter, the Supreme Court pointed out that Congress could pass laws to ensure the effective functioning of the courts, noting that crimes like “falsifying … a process of the court,” or perjury, were “conducive to the due administration of justice.”

In other words, the court made clear that Congress has the constitutional authority to ensure that the justice system can function without malevolent interference:

This is exactly what obstruction of justice is about.

As courts have observed in more recent cases, it makes sense that Congress would be entrusted with safeguarding the integrity of the judicial process.

(https://i.imgur.com/xwpKB8V.jpg)

After all, Congress itself is responsible for creating all federal courts apart from the Supreme Court.

Protecting the procedure through which cases are investigated, tried and adjudicated is what allows the judicial branch to function as a coequal branch — if defendants could derail cases, mislead investigators or lie to the court with impunity, courts would cease to have the ability to administer justice at all.

This is why “process crimes”—the family of crimes that includes not only obstruction of justice, but false statements, perjury, witness tampering and contempt of court (a mechanism by which the judiciary can assert its own interest in fair administration of the laws)—are indispensable to the rule of law:

They ensure that the integrity of the justice system is maintained from start to finish.

(https://i.imgur.com/diVcniX.jpg)

If it’s Congress’ job to create rules that protect the courts’ ability to do their job, then it’s also Congress’ duty to get to the bottom of whether the president has tried to thwart those efforts.

In short, while the president can decide what cases to pursue, it’s Congress’ job to protect how they move through our judicial system.

In fact, understanding obstruction of justice as an expression of Congress’ constitutional power to safeguard the judicial process means that contrary to Barr’s assertions, the motive behind the obstruction matters — particularly when it comes to the president.

Precisely because the test for obstruction of justice is whether someone acted with a “corrupt” motive, the crime gets to the heart of whether drumphf has upheld his oath to ensure “faithful” execution of the laws — and gives the “take care clause” meaning and accountability.

(https://i.imgur.com/1W1yeGb.jpg)

If there is evidence, for example, that drumphf tried to stop the Russia investigation to shield his own private conduct because it is illegal, politically damaging, or even merely embarrassing to him personally, then he has not only violated the U.S. legal code, but also his own constitutional duty to enforce the laws in good faith.

It’s because the president holds such immense power that the obstruction of justice law not only applies to him, but applies especially to him:

When he abuses that authority, he is not only potentially breaking the law, he is encroaching on Congress’ constitutional interest in the administration of justice — which means Congress has a lens, independent of its impeachment power, through which to review his actions.

The full details of Mueller’s report will reveal if drumphf used his power to undermine the efforts of the coequal branches to uphold the rule of law—and Congress has every right to find out. (https://i.imgur.com/4cCYmGZ.gif)



Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/04/09/congress-mueller-report-226580 (https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/04/09/congress-mueller-report-226580)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Hypestyle on April 17, 2019, 10:29:26 am
the entire document needs to be released with no redacting.  Bring Barr up on charges for the stalling and pre-emptive editing.  Expose all the tax history of 45.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 19, 2019, 05:33:01 am
the entire document needs to be released with no redacting.  Bring Barr up on charges for the stalling and pre-emptive editing.  Expose all the tax history of 45.

Some useful information, Hype. This ad was effective in expediting the redacted version of the Mueller Report so that number [read: 1.800.205.5162] may be expired.  Here's another 1.800.205.6118   ...and here's another number 1.800.205.0781

(https://i.imgur.com/GCCiw4F.jpg)

I was in South Florida last week to stand alongside the 7.8 million Americans demanding that Congress hold the acting-President accountable for his corruption and force this administration to release the full Mueller Report once and for all.

The simple truth is the American people paid for it, so we deserve to see it.

We want to know what drumphf is hiding, and why his loyalists are working so hard to keep the information secret.

Since October 20, 2017, I’ve been elevating the voices of the American people who believe that our future will be at risk if the acting-president’s lawlessness goes without consequence.

My organization — Need to Impeach — is a grassroots group devoted to empowering voters to take part in our democracy, and get their representatives to understand the case for impeaching the acting-president.

We’ve held town halls all over the country, meeting with people and hearing their concerns.

Through that work, we’ve gained nearly 8 million supporters, making us the fastest growing political movement in the country.

They joined us because they have seen this president commit impeachable offenses in full view of the public eye:

chiefly, obstructing justice, and governing by rampant corruption.

Things have only gotten worse since we started.

drumphf tried to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller, twice.

He forced Jeff Sessions out as Attorney General and replaced him with a yes-man.

He has threatened everyone from his ex-attorney and personal fixer to disabled reporters, and he has dangled pardons for allies.

Members of the Special Counsel’s office are telling reporters that Attorney General William Barr may have misrepresented their findings.

All while drumphf’s hotels are teeming with lobbyists and foreign agents seeking to buy this country out from under us in direct violation of the U.S. Constitution.

If we don’t uphold the law, then there are no laws.

It’s that simple.

Yet this appears to have barely made an impression on Capitol Hill.

In well over a year, Republicans held zero hearings on drumphf’s corruption.

Democrats have put on just one in four months, after making big promises on the campaign trail just last year to bring oversight to this administration.

Both sides seem happy to run out the clock.

Thankfully, as we’ve applied more and more pressure, Democrats have started to wake up.

The Judiciary Committee is threatening to subpoena the full Mueller report, and Richard Neal, the Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, finally began demanding drumphf’s tax returns.

The House even voted unanimously — 420-0 — to release Mr. Mueller’s findings.

But we need more leadership out of Congress if we’re going to restore decency and the rule of law in our country.

And that starts with getting all the evidence in front of the American people — beginning with the full Mueller report.

We need to see and hear everything this president has done and make up our own minds.

This movement is growing, and the only thing Congress listens to more closely than big donors is voters.

The midterms last year proved as much, as Americans across the country filled out their ballots to send a rebuke to the acting-President.

Democrats won in Republican strongholds, and did so on the back of a 60 percent increase in turnout nationwide over the last midterm, and 23.5 percent in Florida alone.

We need House Democrats to actually use the power that voters awarded them last November.

That’s why we’re holding a town hall for the constituents of Reps. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell and Ted Deutch.

Both of these South Florida representatives sit on the Judiciary Committee, which sends articles of impeachment to the House floor for a vote.

The committee chairman, Rep. Jerry Nadler, has the power to subpoena the full Mueller report.

If Reps. Mucarsel-Powell and Deutch know their constituents want action, they very well might lead that charge.

The people who came out to vote in 2018 — in particular young people, women, working people, and people of color — were hoping to elect representatives who would champion their interests.

They were looking for someone to start fighting against the corruption that has overtaken Washington, enriching very few at the expense of almost everyone else.


(https://i.imgur.com/NcjV6dq.gif)

drumphf is only the most acute symptom of that corruption.


But if Democrats want to be those champions for the American people, they must start by taking him on directly.

Only after we restore faith in the rule of law can we begin to tackle other important issues—like improving our healthcare system, guaranteeing clean air and clean water, providing great public education to all, paying workers a living wage, and ensuring everyone has an equal vote.

That’s why our movement will march on.

We will not stop until we throw the most venal president in American history out of office.


(https://i.imgur.com/LIPObYD.jpg)

And it all starts with letting Mueller’s investigation speak for itself — which is why we announced a multi-million ad campaign to pressure Barr to release the full Mueller report.

Our representatives must join us in this struggle for the truth, and act like it’s the most important fight of their political lives.

That’s what the people voted for. That’s what the people paid for.

And this is supposed to be a democracy of, by, and for the people, above and beyond anything else.







Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.sun-sentinel.com/opinion/commentary/fl-op-steyer-impeach-trump-20190416-story.html (https://www.sun-sentinel.com/opinion/commentary/fl-op-steyer-impeach-trump-20190416-story.html)

Would You Like To See More?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ntXTN1YloaU (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ntXTN1YloaU)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 19, 2019, 12:56:53 pm
Friday, 19th April 2019
Mueller Did His Job.

Now It’s the Democrats’ Turn.
by Michelle Goldberg

(https://i.imgur.com/qgbGs8v.jpg)

In 2017, a brilliant visual effects expert created a video montage called “It’s Mueller Time!
Trump Administration Season Ending.” Set to crooning of the 1963 song “From Russia With Love,” it shows F.B.I. agents rounding up the central figures who brought us Donald Trump’s presidency, culminating in Trump himself being led away with hands behind his back.

I’ll admit to having watched this over and over again; it’s one of the most satisfying bits of wish fulfillment I’ve ever seen.

Wish fulfillment is all it was, though.

It’s a national disgrace that Trump sleeps in the White House instead of a federal prison cell, but it has been a while since I had any expectation that the special counsel Robert Mueller’s findings, many of which were finally released to the public on Thursday, could set things right.

Instead, I’d desperately hoped for something more modest:


clarity. A rough public consensus on what happened in the 2016 election and its aftermath, akin to the Warren Commission report on the assassination of President John Kennedy, or the 9/11 Commission Report.

A set of facts that serious people could agree on, leaving conspiracy theories at least somewhat marginalized.
There are a lot of reasons Trump’s election remains a festering wound.

It was a horrifying shock to many of us and, given his decisive loss in the popular vote, an insult to democracy.

But there was also so much destabilizing weirdness surrounding it.

Trump’s relationship with President Vladimir Putin of Russia has long been suspect; as Kevin McCarthy, the California Republican who was the House majority leader at the time, told colleagues in a secretly recorded 2016 conversation, “There’s two people I think Putin pays:

Rohrabacher and Trump.” (He was speaking of the slavishly pro-Putin former Republican Congressman Dana Rohrabacher.)

Several weeks before Trump was inaugurated, America’s intelligence agencies reported that Russia had engaged in cyberoperations to help him win.

In the months that followed, there was one staggering revelation after another about secret conversations between Trump’s circle and various figures linked to Russian intelligence.

At the same time, the new administration unleashed on the public a degrading cacophony of lies, of the sort many of us associate with authoritarian countries like Russia.

The day after the new president was sworn in, Sean Spicer, Trump’s first press secretary, stood in the White House briefing room and insisted that the inauguration crowd had been unprecedented in size.

This was terrifying, despite the petty stupidity of the untruth, because Americans were not yet used to being told to believe government diktats over the clear evidence of their senses.

This quickly became our new normal. Once Republicans realized the power they could amass by collaborating in Trumpian mendacity, most of them gleefully abandoned any sense of epistemological solidarity with their fellow Americans.

There’s a reason “gaslighting” has become one of the most overused terms of the Trump era.

And perhaps the biggest lie of all was that Mueller’s investigation, rather than the events that precipitated it, was the real scandal, an attempt to frame Trump rather than an effort to get to the bottom of an assault on our democracy.

It was probably naïve to think that Mueller could cut through such a thick web of falsity.

But if anyone could have, it would have been him, the embodiment of a set of old-fashioned virtues that still ostensibly command bipartisan respect.

Over the months of the investigation, he came to represent for many an ideal of manliness that rebuked Trump’s insecure machismo.

(https://i.imgur.com/k6MkvYD.jpg)

He was a war hero, Trump was a shirker.

(https://i.imgur.com/sCWQgR3.jpg)

He was a public servant, Trump a venal con man.


He was honest, Trump a liar.


America doesn’t have a Walter Cronkite anymore, a person whose word is trusted implicitly across the political spectrum.

Mueller was as close as we were going to get.

He and his team have now given us the clearest picture yet of the murky events surrounding Trump’s ascension.

“The Russian government interfered in the 2016 presidential election in sweeping and systematic fashion,” they wrote.

The Trump campaign welcomed this interference, but, we now know, did not assist in it.

“Although the investigation established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts, the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”

Once in office, Trump sought to thwart the investigation into what Russia had done.


He believed — correctly, as it happens — that Russia’s actions cast doubt on the legitimacy of his victory.

The report says he may also have feared that what appears to be his advance notice of the WikiLeaks dumps of hacked Democratic emails and his campaign’s now infamous Trump Tower meeting with Russian emissaries offering dirt on Hillary Clinton “could be seen as criminal activity by the President, his campaign, or his family.”

Further, although “the President publicly stated during and after the election that he had no connection to Russia,” his company was negotiating to build a Trump Tower Moscow throughout most of the campaign, a fact that could have hurt him politically if it got out.

Numerous commentators have said that the report reads like a road map for impeachment, and in a remotely functional country that’s what it would be.

Mueller makes it clear that because of the Office of Legal Counsel’s opinion that a sitting president cannot be indicted,

“we determined not to apply an approach that could potentially result in a judgment that the President committed crimes.”

Instead, the evidence is laid out for congressional action, or even for prosecutors to indict after Trump leaves office.

The test for us now is how much evidence still matters.

Before the report came out, William Barr, Trump’s attorney general, created a fog of disinformation around it, blatantly misleading the public about what it contained.

Weeks before anyone else could read the report, he tried to close the door on obstruction, implying falsely that Mueller meant to leave the decision to him.

In a news conference Thursday, Barr repeatedly said that Mueller had found no “collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Mueller, however, never examined the case through the lens of “collusion,” which isn’t a term in criminal law:
“In evaluating whether evidence about collective action of multiple individuals constituted a crime, we applied the framework of conspiracy law, not the concept of ‘collusion,’” the report says.

Barr claimed that “evidence of non-corrupt motives weighs heavily against any allegation that the President had a corrupt intent to obstruct the investigation.”

The report is overstuffed with evidence of corrupt motives.

But most people aren’t going to read the nearly 500-page report.

Republicans have already seized on Barr’s words — and on the lack of criminal charges in a document that was never going to contain criminal charges — to claim total vindication for Trump.

The president’s manifest disloyalty to the country in trying to halt an investigation into a foreign attack on an American election is, to the right, of no account.

Nor are the counterintelligence implications of Mueller’s findings, which aren’t part of the report.

In the eyes of the president’s supporters, his campaign did not participate in the criminal conspiracy that helped elect him, so no more needs to be said.

The reaction to the report shows that between the minority of Americans who support Trump and the majority who do not, there may no longer be even the possibility of a shared sense of reality or national purpose.

Even as exemplary a figure as Mueller cannot change that.

Compounding the problem, Republicans are willing to act unilaterally on their perception of reality, but Democrats are not.

As Hannah Arendt wrote in 1951, “Totalitarianism will not be satisfied to assert, in the face of contrary facts, that unemployment does not exist; it will abolish unemployment benefits as part of its propaganda.”

The same logic underlies Republican threats to actualize fantasies about an attempted deep-state coup by opening an investigation into the Mueller investigation’s origins.

Democrats, conversely, have facts on their side, but not conviction.

They are reluctant to begin an impeachment inquiry into Trump because majorities, in polls, don’t support it, and there is no Republican buy-in.

Whether or not this is politically wise, failing to impeach would be a grave abdication.

If you want people to believe that the misdeeds enumerated in the Mueller report are serious, you have to act like it.

(https://i.imgur.com/LMZQmAl.jpg)

To not even try to impeach Trump is to collaborate in the Trumpian fiction that he has done nothing impeachable.


(https://i.imgur.com/921mI1M.jpg)

And if Congress won’t take the lead in condemning the president’s lawlessness and demanding justice, one of the Democrats running for the presidential nomination should.


Mueller has given us the truth of what Trump has done, and in that sense the hokey faith the Resistance put in him was not misplaced.

But right now only a political fight can make that truth matter.
















Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/19/opinion/mueller-report-trump-barr-impeachment.html (https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/19/opinion/mueller-report-trump-barr-impeachment.html)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 19, 2019, 07:04:17 pm
Friday, 19th April 2019
GOP leaders ignore 400 pages of evidence that Trump is a criminal
by Oliver Willis

(https://i.imgur.com/pJ2Qtdf.jpg)


Top Republican leaders in Congress ignored the details of Trump’s criminality and corruption outlined in the Mueller report, and instead mounted defenses of him and pushed for the country to effectively ignore Trump's actions.

Coming in at more than 400 pages, the Mueller report detailed the repeated interactions between Trump's presidential campaigns and Russians interfering in the election process with documented evidence.

The report also revealed the stomach-turning details of Trump's attempts to impede the investigation using his presidential power.

None of this apparently matters to Republican leaders.

(https://i.imgur.com/SQ5e5uv.jpg)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the highest-ranking Republican official in the United States, was tight-lipped about the report.

McConnell's only public statement was a short press release thanking Attorney General William Barr for releasing the report to the public.

McConnell did not point out how Barr had widely deceived the nation in his presentation and did not bother to address Trump's actions.

"The nation is fortunate to have an experienced leader like Bill Barr in place," he noted.

Sen. John Thune (R-SD) did even worse.

Despite his role as Majority Whip in the Senate, he appeared to have no problems with the sitting president of the United States engaging in criminal acts.

Thune did not bother to issue a press release or even a tweet on the release of the Mueller report.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's sole public statement could have been written by Trump himself.

"Nothing we saw today changes the underlying results of the 22-month long Mueller investigation that ultimately found no collusion," he said.

McCarthy claimed Democrats concerned by the details of the report and Trump's assault on the rule of law were merely engaged in a search for "imaginary evidence."

"IT IS TIME TO MOVE ON," he pleaded in an all-caps tweet. (https://i.imgur.com/qGIFOXJ.gif)

His second-in-command, Minority Whip Steve Scalise, parroted McCarthy and Trump in falsely claiming that the report had exonerated Trump of wrongdoing.

He said Democrats "ought to apologize" to America for raising concerns about Trump's work with a hostile foreign power.

Scalise also raised the specter of a congressional investigation based on right-wing conspiracy theories that insist there was no basis for the Trump investigation to begin with.

Even the Republican leaders tasked with holding up the rule of law had nothing of consequence to say about Trump’s actions.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is currently on a tour of Africa with Ivanka Trump.

He took a break from his travels to tell reporters he was "not interested" in hearing from special counsel Robert Mueller through congressional testimony (House Democrats have asked Mueller to speak).

Graham was otherwise silent on the report.

Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA), the top-ranking Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, insisted that "accusations of criminal obstruction are unfounded," despite the voluminous evidence to the contrary in the report.

Otherwise, Collins complained in tweets about coverage of the report and Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler's ongoing attempts to hold Trump accountable.

Over the first two years of Trump's presidency, his Republican allies in Congress steadfastly refused to do their jobs and uncover his criminality and corruption.

(https://i.imgur.com/fiL81QX.jpg)

Voters punished the party for that in the 2018 midterm elections and gave control of the House to Democrats.

Despite the rebuke from millions of voters, the responses from top Republican leaders show that nothing Trump does — even with hundreds of pages of evidence — will cause them to step away from the party line.

(https://i.imgur.com/1k31ePL.jpg)

They have chosen loyalty and party over upholding the U.S. Constitution.















Would You Like To Know More?
https://shareblue.com/republican-leaders-ignore-mueller-report-evidence/
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 20, 2019, 05:05:35 am
(https://i.imgur.com/xhzvir7.jpg)

Report On The Investigation Into Russian Interference In The 2016 Presidential Election
Vol. I of II
Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller, III
Washington, D.C.
March 2019


TABLE OF CONTENTS - VOLUME I

INTRODUCTION TO VOLUME I ..................................................1

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY TO VOLUME I..............................................2

I. THE SPECIAL COUNSEL'S INVESTIGATION....................................11

II. RUSSIAN "ACTIVE MEASURES" SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN........................14

A. Structure of the Internet Research Agency..............................15

B. Funding and Oversight from Concord & Prigozhin.........................16

C. The IRA Targets U.S. Elections.........................................19

1. The IRA Ramps Up U.S.Operations As Early As 2014.......................19

2. U.S. Operations Through IRA-Controlled Social Media Accounts...........22

3. U.S. Operations Through Facebook.......................................24

4. U.S. Operations Through Twitter........................................26

a. Individualized Accounts................................................26

b. IRA Botnet Activities..................................................28

5. U.S. Operations Involving Political Rallies............................29

6. Targeting & Recruitment of U.S. Persons................................31

7. Interactions & Contacts with the Drumphf Campaign......................33

a. Drumphf Campaign Promotion of IRA Political Materials..................33

b. Contact with Drumphf Campaign Officials in Connection to Rallies.......35

III. RUSSIAN HACKING & DUMPING OPERATIONS.................................36

A. GRU Hacking Directed at the Clinton Campaign...........................36

2. Intrusions into the DCCC & DNC Networks................................38

a. Initial Access.........................................................38

b. Implantation of Malware on DCCC & DCCC Networks.........................38

c. Theft of Documents from DNC & DCCC Networks............................40

B. Dissemination of the Hacked Materials..................................41

1. DCLeaks................................................................41

2. Guccifer 2.0...........................................................42

3. Use of WikiLeaks.......................................................44

a. WikiLeaks's Expressed Opposition Toward the Clinton Campaign...........44

b. WikiLeaks's First Contact with Guccifer 2.0 & DCLeaks..................45

c. The GRU's Transfer of Stolen Materials to Wikileaks....................45

d. WikiLeaks Statement Dissembling About the Source of Stolen Materials...48

C. Additional GRU Cyber Operations........................................49

1. Summer & Fall 2016 Operations targeting Democratic-Linked Victims......49

2. Intrusions Targeting the Administration of U.S. Elections..............50

D. Drumphf Campaign & the Dissemination of Hacked Materials...............51

1. [HOM]..................................................................51

a. Background.............................................................51

b. Contacts with the Campaign about WikiLeaks.............................52

c. [HOM]..................................................................54

d. WikiLeaks's October 7, 2016 Release of Stolen Podesta Emails...........58

e. Donald Trump Jr. Interaction with WikiLeaks............................59

2. Other Potential Campaign Interest in Riussian Hacked Materials.........61

a. Henry Oknyansky (a/k/a Henry Greenberg)................................61

b. Campaign Efforts to Obtain Deleted Clinton Emails......................62

IV. RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT LINKS TO & CONTACTS WITH THE DRUMPHF CAMPAIGN......66

A. Campaign Period (September 2015 - November 8, 2016)....................66

1. Trump Tower Moscow Project.............................................67

a. Trump Tower Moscow Venture with the Crocus Group (2013-2014)...........67

b. Communications with the I.C. Expert investment Company & Giorgi
Rtskhiladze (Summer & Fall 2015)..........................................70

c. Letter of Intent & Contacts to Russian Government (October 2015-
January 2016).............................................................70

i. Trump Signs the Letter of Intent on behalf of the Drumphf Organization.70

ii. post-LOI Contacts with Individuals in Russia..........................72

d. Discussions about Russia Travel by Michael Cohen or Candidate Drumphf
(December 2015 - June 2016)...............................................76

i. Sater's Overtures to Cohen to Travel to Russia.........................76

ii. Candidate Drumphf's Opportunities to Travel to Russia.................78

2. George Papadopoulos....................................................80

a. Origins of Campaign Work...............................................81

b. Initial Russia-Related Contacts........................................82

c. March 31 Foreign Policy Team Meeting...................................85

d. George Papadopoulos Learns that Russia Has "Dirt" in the Form of
Clinton Emails............................................................86

e. Russia-Related Communications With The Campaign........................89

f. Drumphf Campaign Knowledge of "Dirt"...................................93

g. Additional George Papadopoulos Contact.................................94

3. Carter Page.............................................................95

a. Background.............................................................96

b. Origins of & Early Campaign Work.......................................97

c. Carter Page's July 2016 Trip To Moscow.................................98

d. Later Campaign Work & Removal from the Campaign.......................102

4. Dimitri Simes & the Center for the National Interest..................103

a. CNI & Dimitri Simes Connect with the Drumphf Campaign.................103

b. National Interest Hosts a Foreign Policy Speech at the Mayflower
Hotel....................................................................105

5. June 9, 2016 Meeting at Trump Tower...................................110

a. Setting Up the June 9 Meeting.........................................110

i. Outreach to Donald Drumphf Jr.........................................110

ii. Awareness of the Meeting Within the Campaign.........................114

b. The Events of June 9, 2016............................................116

i. Arrangements for the Meeting..........................................116

ii. Conduct of the Meeting...............................................117

c. Post-June 9 Events....................................................120

6. Events at the Republican National Convention..........................123

a. Ambassador Kislyak's Encounters with Senator Sessions & J.D. Gordon
the Week of the RNC......................................................123

b. Change to Republican Party Platform...................................124

7. Post-Convention Contacts with Kislyak.................................127

a. Ambassador Kislyak invites J.D. Gordon to Breakfast at the
Ambassador's Residence...................................................127

b. Senator Sessions's September 2016 Meeting with Ambassador Kislyak.....127

8. Paul Manafort.........................................................129

a. Paul Manafort's Ties to Russia & Ukraine..............................131

i. Oleg Deripaska Consulting Work........................................131

ii. Political Consulting Work............................................132

iii. Konstantin Kilimnik.................................................132

b. Contacts during Paul Manafort's Time with the Drumphf Campaign........134

i. Paul Manafort Joins the Campaign......................................134

ii. Paul Manafort's Campaign-Period Contacts.............................135

iii. Paul Manafort's Two Campaign-Period Meetings with Konstantin
Kilimnik in the United States............................................138

c. Post-Resignation Activiites...........................................141

B. Post-Election & Transition-Period Contacts............................144

1. Immediate Post-Election Activity......................................144

a. Outreach from the Russian Government..................................145

b. High-Level Encouragement of Contacts through Alternative Channels.....146

2. Kirill Dmitriev's Post-Election Contacts With the Incoming
Administration...........................................................147

a. Background............................................................147

b. Kirill Dmitriev's Post-Election Contacts With the Incoming
Administration...........................................................149

c. Erik Prince & Kirill Dmitriev Meet in the Seychelles..................151

i. George Nader & Erik Prince Arrange Seychelles Meeting with
Dmitriev.................................................................151

ii. The Seychelles Meetings..............................................153

iii. Erik Prince's Meeting with Steve Bannon after the Seychelles Trip...155

d. Kirill Dmitriev's Post-Election Contact with Rick Gerson Regarding
U.S.-Russia Relations....................................................156

3. Ambassador Kislyak's Meeting with Jared Kushner & Michael Flynn in
Drumphf Tower Following the Election.....................................159

4. Jared Kushner's Meeting with Segey Gorkov.............................161

5. Petr Aven's Outreach Efforts to the Transition Team...................163

6. Carter Page Contact with Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich......166

7. Contacts With & Through Michael T. Flynn..............................167

a. United Nations Vote on Israeli Settlements............................167

b. U.S. Sanctions Against Russia.........................................168

V. PROSECUTION & DECLINATION DECISIONS...................................174

A. Russian "Active Measures" Social Media Campaign.......................174

B. Russian Hacking & Dumping Operations..................................175

1. Section 1030 Computer-Intrusion Conspiracy............................175

a. Background............................................................175

b. Charging Decision As to[HARM TO ONGOING MATTER].......................176

2. Potential Section 1030 Violation[Personal Privacy]....................179

C. Russian Government Outreach & Contacts................................180

1. Potential Coordination: Conspiracy & Collusion........................180

2. Potential Coordination: Foreign Agent Statues (FARA & 18 U.S.C.#951)..181

a. Governing Law.........................................................181

b. Application...........................................................182

3. Campaign Finance......................................................183

a. Overview Of Governing law.............................................184

b. Application to June 9 Drumphf Tower Meeting...........................185

i. Thing-of-Value Element................................................186

ii. Willfulness..........................................................187

iii. Difficulties in Valuing Promised Information........................188

c. Application to WikiLeaks[HOM].........................................188

i. Questions Over [HOM]..................................................189

ii. Willfulness..........................................................190

iii. Constitutional Considerations.......................................190

iv. Analysis[HOM]........................................................190

4. False Statements & Obstruction of the Investigation...................191

a. Overview Of Governing Law.............................................191

b. Application to Certain Individuals....................................192

i. George Papadopoulos...................................................192

ii. [Personal Privacy]...................................................194

iii. Michael Flynn.......................................................194

iv. Michael Cohen........................................................195

v. [HOM].................................................................196

vi. Jeff Sessions........................................................197

vii. Others Interviewed During the Investigation.........................197
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 20, 2019, 11:48:52 am
(https://i.imgur.com/j7cYm2U.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/T4Vt9Ri.gif)

(https://i.imgur.com/7NraEDU.gif)

(https://i.imgur.com/VY7CMit.gif)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 20, 2019, 02:10:06 pm
Saturday, 20th April 2019
The Mueller Report Demands an Impeachment Inquiry
by Susan Hennessey, Quinta Jurecic

(https://i.imgur.com/Ay8mLLA.png)

Here is, as Bill Barr might call it, “the bottom line”:

The Mueller Report describes, in excruciating detail and with relatively few redactions, a candidate and a campaign aware of the existence of a plot by a hostile foreign government to criminally interfere in the U.S. election for the purpose of supporting that candidate’s side.

It describes a candidate and a campaign who welcomed the efforts and delighted in the assistance.

(https://i.imgur.com/kvhDMvX.jpg)

It describes a candidate and a campaign who brazenly and serially lied to the American people about the existence of the foreign conspiracy and their contacts with it.


And yet, it does not find evidence to support a charge of criminal conspiracy, which requires not just a shared purpose but a meeting of the minds.

Here is the other bottom line:

The Mueller Report describes a president who, on numerous occasions, engaged in conduct calculated to hinder a federal investigation.

It finds ample evidence that at least a portion of that conduct met all of the statutory elements of criminal obstruction of justice.

In some of the instances in which all of the statutory elements of obstruction are met, the report finds no persuasive constitutional or factual defenses.

And yet, it declines to render a judgment on whether the president has committed a crime.

Now, the House must decide what to do with these facts.

If it wants to actually confront the substance of the report, it will introduce a resolution to begin an impeachment inquiry.

So far, House members haven’t shown much appetite to do so.

Republicans seem prepared to just put this unpleasantness behind them—at least those who aren’t launching crusades to “investigate the investigators.”

On the Democratic side, there is a clear reticence in the  leadership to initiate impeachment proceedings that might politically backfire.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer even suggested shortly after the report came out that his party should instead focus on the 2020 election, though he later walked those statements back.

There are a few exceptions—for example, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who said she’d sign onto a previously introduced impeachment resolution.

And on the other side of the Hill, 2020 presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren declared that members of Congress should “do their constitutional duty” in initiating impeachment proceedings.

But by and large the response has been muted.

The problem with this approach is that, under the current system, the options for checking a president who abuses his power to the degree that Trump has are functionally impeachment proceedings or nothing.

There are many factors here, but the main culprit is the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC)’s 2000 memo against the indictment of a sitting president — which itself builds on a 1973 OLC memo, drafted during Watergate, which reached the same conclusion.

The 2000 memo played a key role in shaping Mueller’s decision not to reach a traditional prosecutorial judgment on the issue of presidential obstruction of justice.

But while it was reasonable for the special counsel’s office to consider itself bound by OLC’s reasoning, it produces a baffling end result:

Mueller is barred, as he understands it, from reaching the point in his analysis at which he would make a call as to prosecution or declination of obstruction.

Indeed, he will not even say explicitly whether he believes that the president has committed crimes.

(https://i.imgur.com/ubqUetU.jpg)

He is clear, however, that if he could exonerate Trump on the basis of the available evidence, he would do so.

And he isn’t doing so.


This means that, by Mueller’s read, it is only possible for an investigation to exonerate the president consistent with the OLC memo—he cannot be charged and uncharged crimes must remain unspoken.

Mueller’s solution is to pass the question to Congress.

He isn’t especially subtle in doing so.

He notes that “a federal criminal accusation against a sitting President would … potentially preempt constitutional processes for addressing presidential misconduct,” then flags in a footnote the Constitution’s clauses on impeachment and the OLC opinion’s discussion of the “relationship between impeachment and criminal prosecution of a sitting president.”

In other words, he is saying that while he is not permitted to determine if the president committed a crime, Congress can judge the president’s conduct itself.

The relevant section of the OLC memo reasons that “the constitutionally specified impeachment process ensures that the immunity would not place the President ‘above the law.’”

This is worth dwelling on:

the Office of Legal Counsel found that ruling out presidential liability for criminal conduct was not a threat to the rule of law because of the availability of impeachment as a remedy.

But if impeachment is presumptively off the table in the face of facts as extreme as those the Mueller Report contains, then it’s reasonable to ask whether impeachment is truly available at all where members of the president’s party in the Senate comprise a sufficient number to block removal.

In other words, does the current situation prove that impeachment is not the capacity of one branch to check another but rather a crude measure of party votes?

If so, it would seem that the OLC’s reasoning falls apart—at least in practical, if not theoretical, terms.
Currently, there are bad incentives on both sides of the aisle.

Republicans don’t want to touch the matter because the president is a member of their party.

His agenda aligns with theirs on many issues, and they fear angering his base in a way that might imperil their own reelection.

Democrats, on the other hand, are worried that initiating impeachment proceedings will offer the president a rallying point for his base, and allow Republicans to paint them as fanatics out to get Trump at all costs.

Besides, the thinking goes, Democratic base voters want to discuss policy issues that impact their lives, not perseverate on the many president’s sins.

The problem is that impeachment isn’t a purely political matter — though certainly it is political in part.

It’s a constitutional expression of the separation of powers, of Congress’s ability to check a chief executive overrunning the bounds of his power.

It’s also, under the OLC memo, the only release valve in the constitutional structure for the urgent and mounting pressure of an executive who may have committed serious wrongdoing.

To say that the appropriate course is to simply wait for the next presidential election in 18 months, is to offer a judgment that — even in light of his conduct as described by Mueller — Trump is not truly unfit for the office.

It is to say he is no different from, say, Vice President Mike Pence, who would take his place, or any other Republican for that matter.

It is to say that what matters is winning elections, even if it risks further institutional harms.

There is a danger to this mode of thinking, which is that Democrats should tolerate the institutional harms that would come from not initiating a serious impeachment inquiry because what really matters is winning the 2020 election.

When you convince yourself that the best way to safeguard the republic is for your side to win, it gets tempting to tolerate all kinds of intolerable things.

It is the precise calculus many congressional Republicans have made in supporting Trump despite his degradations of his office.

The Constitution does not mandate that Congress initiate impeachment proceedings each time it is faced with an impeachable offense — but that doesn’t let Congress off the hook in carrying out its constitutional responsibilities, either.


(https://i.imgur.com/ATwMmn6.png)

Each member swears an oath to defend the Constitution and “well and faithfully” execute the duties of her office.

Though hard questions remain about whether President Trump should be impeached and whether the evidence would be sufficient for the Senate to convict him, these are not questions that need to be answered at this stage.

Congress’s responsibility at this point is to begin an impeachment inquiry as a means of finding an answer to them.

And Mueller has provided more than enough information to justify initiating an inquiry:

the report sets out evidence of possible criminal wrongdoing by the president during his time in office related to abuse of power, which is at the dead center of the “high crimes and misdemeanors” impeachment is designed to check.

Though most scholars agree that violating the law is not necessary for impeachment, Congress included allegations of such conduct in articles of impeachment against Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton — all three times the legislature seriously contemplated impeaching the president.


(https://i.imgur.com/QySdRoF.gif)

In Nixon and Clinton’s case, the articles specifically concerned criminal behavior, including obstruction of justice.


What’s more, the Mueller report itself suggests a possible hook for impeachment in indicating that the “corrupt intent” necessary for an obstruction offense would also violate the president’s obligation to “faithfully execute” the laws under the Take Care Clause.

In the face of this evidence, for Congress to not even consider impeachment as a matter of serious inquiry is to declare that the legislature is not interested in its carrying out its institutional obligations as a coordinate branch of government.

The House judiciary committee would be charged with the responsibility of overseeing impeachment proceedings.

But so far, Chairman Jerry Nadler has focused his energy on issuing subpoenas to the Justice Department in order to obtain the full, unredacted report — requests that the Justice Department is now batting back, and which seem likely to lead to a protracted political fight between the department and Capitol Hill.

It’s all well and good for Congress to want to see an unredacted copy of the document Mueller put together.

At this point, though, the decision to focus energy over redactions risks distracting from the devastating material already on the table.

It’s another variation of Congress’s insistence on delaying any decision on impeachment until Mueller had issued his report — a way of kicking the can down the road and punting the hard decisions to a future date, this time to whenever the committee peels back the report’s remaining redactions.

But Congress cannot forestall the inevitable forever. (https://i.imgur.com/4cCYmGZ.gif)

Eventually it will face the task the Constitution commits to the legislative branch, which is to render a judgment.

In the wake of Mueller revelations, to not act is to accept the president’s conduct as tolerable—be it for 18 more months or four more years.
















Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.lawfareblog.com/mueller-report-demands-impeachment-inquiry (https://www.lawfareblog.com/mueller-report-demands-impeachment-inquiry)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 21, 2019, 06:11:40 am
(https://i.imgur.com/4gxa2AU.jpg)


4. drumphf most likely would not be president without the help of fox news.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 22, 2019, 04:00:14 am
The scorecard, so far...

(https://i.imgur.com/2jt4gWS.jpg)


(https://i.imgur.com/ISz6vVK.gif)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 22, 2019, 07:10:33 pm
Monday, 22nd April 2019
Democrats Must Move Fearlessly Toward Impeachment
by Eugene Robinson

(https://i.imgur.com/IG3dK7g.png)

The constitutional case for impeaching President Trump was best made two decades ago by one of his most servile enablers, Lindsey Graham, now the senior senator from South Carolina:

“You don’t even have to be convicted of a crime to lose your job in this constitutional republic if this body [the Senate] determines that your conduct as a public official is clearly out of bounds in your role … because impeachment is not about punishment. Impeachment is about cleansing the office. Impeachment is about restoring honor and integrity to the office.”

The political case for moving deliberately but fearlessly toward impeachment is even clearer:


If timorous Democrats do not seize and define this moment, Trump surely will.

What just happened is that special counsel Robert Mueller delivered a searing indictment of a president who has no idea what “honor” and “integrity” even mean — a president who lies almost pathologically, who orders subordinates to lie, who has no respect for the rule of law, who welcomed Russian meddling in the 2016 election, who clumsily tried to orchestrate a cover-up, who tried his best to impede a lawful Justice Department investigation and failed only to the extent that aides ignored his outrageous and improper orders.

What Trump claims just happened is a "witch hunt."

Anyone who thinks there is a chance that Trump will lick his wounds and move on has not been paying attention.


Having escaped criminal charges — because he is a sitting president — Trump will go on the offensive.


With the help of Attorney General William Barr, whose title really should be Minister of Spin, the president will push to investigate the investigators and sell the bogus counternarrative of an attempted "coup" by politically motivated elements of the "deep state."

Here is the important thing:


Trump will mount this attack no matter what Democrats do.


And strictly as a matter of practical politics, the best defense against Trump has to be a powerful offense.

(https://i.imgur.com/luK7taM.jpg)

I fail to see the benefit for Democrats, heading into the 2020 election, of being seen as such fraidy-cats that they shirk their constitutional duty.


Mueller's portrait of this president and his administration is devastating.


According to Lindsey Graham's "honor and integrity" standard — which he laid out in January 1999, when he was one of the House prosecutors in Bill Clinton's impeachment trial in the Senate — beginning the process of impeaching Trump is not a close call.

It is also important for Democrats to keep their eyes on the prize.


The election is the one guaranteed opportunity to throw Trump and his band of grifters out of the White House, and the big anti-Trump majority that was on display in last year's midterm must be maintained and, one hopes, expanded.

But that task will largely fall to the eventual Democratic nominee, whoever that turns out to be.

Presidential contenders should be free to position themselves however they see fit on the impeachment question.


Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., has chosen to single herself out by leading the charge.


Others may choose to demur and focus instead on the kitchen-table issues, such as health care, that polls show voters care about.

But most Democratic members of Congress (believe it or not) are not running for president.


Their focus has to be on their constitutional duty — and nowhere in the Constitution does it say "never mind about presidential obstruction of justice or abuse of power if there's an election next year."

I have no intention of letting congressional Republicans off the hook.


They have constitutional responsibilities as well, though it's clear they will not fulfill them.


Imagine, for a moment, if the tables were turned — if a GOP majority were running the House and a Democratic president did half of what Trump did.


Do you think Republicans would hesitate for a New York minute?


Articles of impeachment would have been drawn up long ago and stern-faced senators, including Graham, would already be sitting in judgment.

The conventional wisdom is that Republicans made a political error by impeaching Clinton.


But they did win the presidency in 2000 and go on to dominate Congress for most of George W. Bush's tenure.


If impeachment was a mistake, it wasn't a very costly one.

Does it "play into Trump's hands" to speak of impeachment?


I think it plays into the president's hands to disappoint the Democratic base and come across as weak and frightened.

(https://i.imgur.com/6lIiiH9.jpg)

Voters who saw the need to hold Trump accountable decided to give Democrats some power — and now expect them to use it.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 09, 2019, 06:19:34 pm
Species 86067-054


(https://i.imgur.com/VKAK6uA.jpg)

According to Federal Bureau of Prisons

(https://i.imgur.com/sxiVb85.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 13, 2019, 02:25:09 pm
Monday, 13th May 2019
Democrats push law that would allow drumphf to be prosecuted

by Anthony Man

(https://i.imgur.com/4db9ZQI.jpg)

A trio of House Judiciary Committee Democrats, including South Florida's Ted Deutch, is pushing legislation to pause the statute of limitations while a president is in office.

The No President Is Above the Law Act is aimed at President Donald Trump.

Many Democrats -- and hundreds of former federal prosecutors -- believe Trump has committed crimes detailed in the report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Trump is shielded from facing criminal charges by a controversial Justice Department policy preventing prosecution of a sitting president but not a former president.

One effect of the policy is that a president who avoids prosecution while in office could escape prosecution altogether because the statute of limitations would have run out by the time the president is out of office.
Most federal criminal offenses carry a five-year statute of limitations.

Under the legislation sponsored by Deutch, who represents Broward and Palm Beach counties; Jerry Nadler, the committee chairman from New York; and Eric Swalwell, a committee member from California, the statute of limitations would be paused for any federal offense committed by a sitting president -- regardless of whether it was committed before or during the president's term of office.

"No one should be able to escape responsibility for their crimes by hiding in the Oval Office," Deutch said in a statement.

"If the Justice Department maintains its policy giving presidents a break from the threat of criminal prosecution during their term, Congress should act to ensure that it doesn't ultimately prevent the pursuit of justice."

(https://i.imgur.com/6KfEdCV.png)

Nadler said the presidency "is not a get-out-of-jail-free card."

The legislation stands next to no chance of becoming law.

It would have to pass the Republican controlled Senate -- and then go to Trump to sign or veto.

Democrats don't have enough votes to override a veto.

Some constitutional scholars believe a president can be indicted while in office.

But the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel has long said that a president can't be prosecuted while in office, but could be after the term ends. Mueller cited that policy as a reason Trump couldn't be charged.

More than 800 former federal prosecutors signed a letter stating that Trump's conduct described in the Mueller report would result in prosecution on "multiple felony charges for obstruction of justice" for anyone who isn't the president.

The Nadler-led committee has been at the forefront of Democrats' efforts to conduct oversight of the Trump administration.

(https://i.imgur.com/13ZQAFH.jpg)

Last week the committee voted to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt, a move White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders called a "desperate ploy."
(https://i.imgur.com/YPWESp7.gif)







Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/democrats-push-law-that-would-allow-donald-trump-to-be-prosecuted/ar-AABiZ2q?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/democrats-push-law-that-would-allow-donald-trump-to-be-prosecuted/ar-AABiZ2q?ocid=spartanntp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 13, 2019, 06:04:49 pm
Monday, 13th May 2019
On the Eve of a Hearing, Trump Lawyers Tell Judge They Aren’t Happy About Fast-Tracked Subpoena Fight
by Matt Naham

(https://i.imgur.com/qP1ptna.png)

President Donald Trump‘s attorneys had some thoughts for the Barack Obama-appointed federal judge who decided to quicken the pace of certain proceedings in the ongoing struggle between Team Trump and House Democrats.
(https://i.imgur.com/DcayYko.gif)"I'll Sue!"
If you were paying attention last Thursday afternoon, May 9, Judge Amit Mehta entered an order revealing that it was his plan to fast-track Trump’s attempt to stop finance firm Mazars USA from complying with a congressional subpoena from the House Oversight Committee.
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
Mehta said he was “notifying the parties that the court intends to advance Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction to trial on the merits” and consolidate issues into a hearing because the court “can discern no benefit from an additional round of legal arguments.”
(https://i.imgur.com/DcayYko.gif)"I'll Sue!"
Trump lawyers want no part of this streamlining and said so just before Tuesday, May 14.
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
That’s the date the judge set for the hearing.
(https://i.imgur.com/DcayYko.gif)"I'll Sue!"
“Last Thursday at 4:00 P.M., the Court notified the parties that the hearing on Plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction would also be the final trial on the merits. Because the hearing is tomorrow, the Court’s consolidation will force Plaintiffs to try their case on only four days’ notice, with no discovery, with little opportunity to assemble evidence, before Defendants have filed a single pleading, with no idea which facts are actually in dispute, and without a round of briefing focused on the merits,” they began.
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
“While Plaintiffs understand the Court’s desire to decide this case efficiently, resolving it in this way—and on this schedule—will severely prejudice Plaintiffs. Put simply, proceeding in this fashion will deny Plaintiffs a full and fair opportunity to assemble a record and brief the merits of their constitutional claim.”
(https://i.imgur.com/DcayYko.gif)"I'll Sue!"
Trump lawyers added that they “respectfully oppose consolidation” because consolidation “on such short notice […] would undermine Plaintiffs’ constitutional due-process rights.”
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
“[T]he President of the United States, and the other Plaintiffs, respectfully ask this Court to limit tomorrow’s hearing to the motion for a preliminary injunction or, in the alternative, cancel tomorrow’s hearing and set a schedule for trial on the merits that would allow the record to be fully developed and the legal issues to be adequately briefed and argued,” they continued.
(https://i.imgur.com/DcayYko.gif)"I'll Sue!"
“Only by proceeding in one of these ways will the Court be able ‘fully to consider and to act on this matter’ from the ‘best available perspective, both as to underlying evidence and [its] appraisal thereof.'”
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
The House Oversight Committee subpoenaed Mazars USA for Trump’s financial documents, including “Statements of Financial Condition.”
(https://i.imgur.com/DcayYko.gif)"I'll Sue!"
During a recent congressional hearing, former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen stated that Trump would use these statements to exaggerate the value of his assets.
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
He would allegedly due so by inflating the number of residential units in properties and the number of floors in towers he owned.
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
Democrats are looking into this to see if any of these alleged misrepresentations were criminal in nature.
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
Trump had previously put Mazars USA “on notice,” saying that legal action could come if they complied with a subpoena.
(https://i.imgur.com/IloeWgC.gif)"I'll Sue!"
Trump has alleged that the subpoena was issued “with the hope that it will turn up something that Democrats can use as a political tool against the President now and in the 2020 election.”

Trump lawyers called the subpoena a “weapon of choice” for House Democrats in their “all-out political war against President Donald J. Trump.”

Update, 7:58 p.m.: Judge Mehta has ordered that the hearing proceed on Tuesday “as scheduled.”

“During the hearing, the court will take up the objections to its Consolidation Order made in Plaintiffs’ Response to Order of the Court,” Mehta said in a minute order Monday evening, the court docket in the case shows.




















Would You Like To Know More?
https://lawandcrime.com/high-profile/on-eve-of-hearing-trump-lawyers-tell-federal-judge-they-arent-happy-about-fast-tracked-subpoena-fight/
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 16, 2019, 06:57:06 pm
Thursday, 16th May 2019
What Congress Should Ask Robert Mueller When He Testifies
by Joshua Geltzer, Ryan Goodman and Asha Rangappa

(https://i.imgur.com/xx19hNJ.jpg)

Robert Mueller’s time as special counsel investigating Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and links to the Trump campaign was notable for many things, among those his silence.  Even as President Donald Trump talked and tweeted repeatedly about Mueller personally, the special counsel team, and their work, and even as the media covered Mueller’s every coming and going, Mueller let his work speak for itself.

That’s about to change.  While the date hasn’t been set yet, odds are that Mueller will testify soon on the Hill.  The three of us previously offered questions for Congress to pose to Attorney General William Barr when he testified before Congress.  We now suggest the questions below for Congress to ask Special Counsel Mueller as he breaks his silence and offers congressional testimony.  We offer these questions as an addition to the 60 questions posed by the 10 Democratic members of the Senate Judiciary Committee. We believe there is very little overlap between the two lists, and we offer ours as a supplement.

Once again, we encourage readers to add to our list with questions of their own (by sending their suggestions to lte@justsecurity.org). We will add readers’ questions to the list with attribution, but let us know if you prefer anonymity.

I. Process

1. Before you submitted your report on March 22, 2019, did Attorney General William Barr or Rod Rosenstein inform you that they believed you had the authority or the responsibility to bring an indictment against the President if you concluded there was sufficient evidence to establish the President committed a crime? Did Mr. Barr or Mr. Rosenstein inform you that they believed you should indicate in your final report whether you would have brought an indictment of the President were it not for the Justice Department’s preexisting view that a sitting President cannot be indicted?

2. If you knew before you submitted your report on March 22, 2019 that, according to the Attorney General of the United States, you could and should indicate that a sitting President had acted criminally if you concluded that the President had indeed engaged in a crime, would you have included that determination in your report if you considered the evidence supported it?

3. Upon concluding your work and submitting your final report, did you anticipate the Attorney General reaching and publicly announcing a conclusion on whether the President had obstructed justice? Would you have recommended that the Attorney General do so?

4. Were you ever concerned that William Barr, Rod Rosenstein, or Matthew Whitaker were improperly sharing information about your ongoing investigation with the White House?

5. Your report states:

“On March 9, 2017, Comey briefed the ‘Gang of Eight’ congressional leaders about the FBI’s investigation of Russian interference, including an identification of the principal U.S. subjects of the investigation. … The week after Comey’s briefing, the White House Counsel’s Office was in contact with SSCI Chairman Senator Richard Burr about the Russia investigations and appears to have received information about the status of the FBI investigation."

Were you concerned that Sen. Burr improperly provided information to the White House about the status of the investigation? Did you raise these concerns with Sen. Burr or his staff?

6. On April 9, 2019, Rep. Charlie Crist asked Attorney General Barr the following question:

“Reports have emerged recently, General, that members of the special counsel’s team are frustrated at some level with the limited information included in your March 24th letter, that it does not adequately or accurately, necessarily, portray the report’s findings. Do you know what they’re referencing with that?"

Did Attorney General Barr have knowledge what those reports were referencing? In your view, did your letter of March 27, 2019, to the Attorney General provide him with knowledge of what those reports were referencing?

7. Your March 27, 2019, letter to Attorney General Barr referenced an earlier letter you had already sent to Mr. Barr on March 25, 2019. How many letters or communications in writing did you send to Attorney General Barr raising concerns about either his 4-page letter dated March 24, 2019 or his decision not to release the summaries your Office apparently prepared for public release? Why send those letters?

8. Attorney General Barr’s letter to Congress on March 22, 2019, stated that there were no instances in which the Attorney General or Acting Attorney General rejected any proposed action by you. Is that statement accurate? Were there instances in which you did not propose an action primarily or in part because you believed the Attorney General or Acting Attorney General would not approve it? Does that include instances in which you believed they would not have approved it for reasons other than the preexisting Justice Department view that a sitting president cannot be indicted?

9. Attorney General Barr said that he offered you the opportunity to review his March 24, 2019 letter to Congress and you declined. Is that accurate? If so, why did you decline?

10. What role, if any, did Matthew Whitaker or Rod Rosenstein play in the decision of your office to make a public statement about the Buzzfeed report that claimed the President directed Michael Cohen to lie to Congress? Why did your office respond to this news report and not do so for many others? What are the material differences between what Cohen told Congress on February 27, 2019 about the President’s telling him to lie and what Buzzfeed reported?

11. Many commentators, including highly experienced former federal prosecutors, were surprised by the timing of your end of the investigation while relevant litigation was ongoing and significant actors such as Julian Assange and Roger Stone could still, at least conceivably, flip and cooperate with your investigation, thus potentially yielding new investigations and even prosecutions. Please explain fully your reasoning for bringing the investigation to a close when you did.

(https://i.imgur.com/v8ZlVzv.jpg)



II. Counterintelligence analysis

12. Upon your appointment, did you review the case opening documentation for the counterintelligence investigation into Russian election interference, codenamed Crossfire Hurricane? Can you explain the basis for the opening of that investigation? Do you believe it was a properly predicated investigation?

13. Do you believe that Congress, including the Gang of Eight, has been adequately informed by your team and other parts of the intelligence community with respect to any counterintelligence assessments of Americans who may have been acting wittingly or unwittingly on behalf of the Russian government? Do you believe Congress, including the Gang of Eight, has been adequately informed by your team and other parts of the intelligence community with respect to other counterintelligence information that has come out of your and related investigations into Russian interference in the American political process and public and private institutions? If not, what have been the obstacles to Congress being adequately informed?

14. Did your office ever provide any assessment of the extent to which President Trump is acting—wittingly or unwittingly—to advance the interests of the Russian Government; if so, has that assessment been provided in some form to Congress (and, if so, to which Members)? If your office did not make that assessment, are you aware of the FBI or others in the government having produced such an assessment at any point, and do you know if that has been provided in some form to Congress? Are you aware of any consideration, in your office or elsewhere in the administration, of mitigation measures to address concerns of Russian influence (witting or unwitting) in the Trump White House? If so, what came of that consideration?

15. On March 20, 2017, then-FBI Director James Comey stated in a public congressional hearing:

“I have been authorized by the Department of Justice to confirm that the FBI, as part of our counterintelligence mission, is investigating the Russian government’s efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election and that includes investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government."

The May 17, 2017 Order establishing your mandate stated:

“The Special Counsel is authorized to conduct the investigation confirmed by then-FBI Director James B. Comey in testimony before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on March 20, 2017."

Your report, however, suggests that the counterintelligence investigation may have been conducted by other parts of the Justice Department. Given the public statements made by the FBI Director and given the Justice Department’s order, please explain publicly whether you maintained control over the counterintelligence investigation and your role and relationship to it since you assumed the position of Special Counsel.

16. In your report, you note that your office considered whether to charge Carter Page under the Foreign Agents Registration Act for being an unregistered agent of Russia, but did not believe you had sufficient evidence to prove these charges beyond a reasonable doubt. You also indicate that Page was the subject of a FISA order, and that the FBI did meet the lower probable cause threshold for that order on four instances. Did you ever review the underlying materials for the FISA order? Would any of those materials have included the evidence you considered in deciding whether to charge Page criminally?

17. Are significant parts of the counterintelligence investigation, confirmed by then-FBI Director James Comey on March 20, 2017, still ongoing?

18. Over the entire course of your investigation, did you have unrestricted access to the FBI to direct the Bureau to pursue leads and other investigatory matters of interest? Did you have unrestricted access to the CIA to encourage similar efforts?

III. Obstruction

19. Volume 2 of your final report strongly indicates that, if President Trump engaged in criminal obstruction of justice, some of his personal lawyers were directly involved in those activities and could be criminally liable as well. What was your decision for not pursuing indictments of those lawyers for involvement in obstruction and witness tampering? Was your decision affected by the prospect of the President being included explicitly or implicitly as an unindicted co-conspirator?

20. Please describe your reasoning for including in your final report a comprehensive response to statutory and constitutional defenses to obstruction. It appears this reasoning would be relevant only in anticipation of an institution (such as Congress or future prosecutors) potentially pursuing criminal charges or other institutional actions (such as impeachment) against Mr. Trump during or after his presidency. Is that what you had in mind when including that response?

21. Your final report states:

“Although the events we investigated involved discrete acts …. it is important to view the President’s pattern of conduct as a whole. That pattern sheds light on the nature of the President’s acts and the inferences that can be drawn about his intent."

Does that mean that a proper way to read the report is to consider not only whether each of the instances of potential interference independently constitutes a potential crime of obstruction but also whether the overall set of multiple instances (including, perhaps, instances that on their own would not suffice) would help to establish a case of criminal obstruction?

22. Your final report divides the actions and motives of the President in the potential case of obstruction into “two phases”:

“[T]he actions we investigated can be divided into two phases, reflecting a possible shift in the President’s motives. The first phase covered the period from the President’s first interactions with Comey through the President’s firing of Comey. During that time, the President had been repeatedly told he was not personally under investigation. Soon after the firing of Comey and the appointment of the Special Counsel, however, the President became aware that his own conduct was being investigated in an obstruction-of-justice inquiry. At that point, the President engaged in a second phase of conduct, involving public attacks on the investigation, non-public efforts to control it, and efforts in both public and private to encourage witnesses not to cooperate with the investigation” (Vol. II, p. 7).

Is it accurate to say that, in your view, the President’s actions in phase two—after he was aware that his own conduct was being investigated in an obstruction-of-justice inquiry—were motivated by a desire to interfere with investigation of his potential underlying crime of obstruction?

23. You indicate in your legal analysis for obstruction that even in the absence of an underlying crime, an erroneous belief that the underlying conduct was criminal, or even a desire to conceal embarrassing information from becoming public, could nevertheless constitute “corrupt” intent. Did any of the evidence you uncovered suggest that these kinds of motives may have been driving the President’s actions?

24. What is Congress’ constitutional basis for investigating obstruction of justice by the President, and how would such an investigation be consistent with the separation of powers?

IV. Conspiracy

25. Leading election law experts (including Bob Bauer, Rick Hasen, and Paul S. Ryan) have criticized how your final report describes existing campaign finance law and believe it improperly provides an opening for mischief in the future—for example, (a) by suggesting that the law is unclear on whether a foreign government’s providing essentially opposition research is “a thing of value” and (b) by suggesting “coordination” required an agreement between the Trump Campaign and the Russians to be criminal, despite the absence of such a requirement in federal campaign finance law. How do you respond to these criticisms?

26. Was the legal analysis for campaign finance law in your report a product solely of personnel in your Office or other parts of the Justice Department as well? If other parts of the Justice Department, what role did they play in informing the analysis or working on drafts of it?

27. Would it have been a crime for candidate Trump to promote Russian interests in shaping the Republican primaries and public discourse in the general election or in offering Putin relief from U.S. sanctions in exchange for a highly lucrative real estate deal in Moscow? Did you consider exploring those activities as a potential crime? If these are concerning but perhaps not criminal activities, would you recommend other forms of scrutiny so the public can better understand any such quid pro quo?

28. What is the burden of proof that the Justice Department must meet to prove criminal conspiracy, and how does the Justice Department approach this standard in terms of deciding whether to bring charges? Based on the evidence you uncovered in the course of investigating conspiracy, do you believe your evidence would be sufficient to meet a lower burden of proof, for example, the civil standard of “preponderance of the evidence”?

29. What are the most plausible explanations for Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort’s repeatedly sharing internal polling data with Konstantin Kilimnik, a person the FBI assesses to have ties to Russian intelligence?

30. Your investigation was not able to establish, according to criminal law standards, whether George Papadopoulos informed the Trump campaign about the Russian government having derogatory information on Clinton in the form of emails and indications from the Russian government that it could assist the campaign through the anonymous release of information damaging to Clinton. Do you believe that it’s more likely than not that Papadopoulos did inform the campaign?

1/2
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 16, 2019, 07:02:47 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/G4ZwUqG.jpg)

V. Next Steps

31. Overall, what did you anticipate happening next when you submitted your final report? In particular, what did you think Congress would do with your findings regarding obstruction of justice, given the detailed nature of your findings and your view that it would be improper to opine on whether those findings constituted the commission of criminal activity by a sitting president?

32. Based on your investigation, what legislative reforms do you think may be needed to stop ongoing or future foreign government interference in U.S. elections? Would you recommend a federal requirement for campaigns to report any offer of assistance from a foreign government agent, with failure punishable as a crime? Would you recommend codifying a federal offense for knowingly trafficking in stolen property (perhaps specifically in the campaign context, or perhaps not), to include hacked emails and other electronic documents and communications? Would you recommend expansion of federal offenses for aiding and abetting violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act? Would you recommend changes or official clarifications of campaign finance law rules on foreign national contributions to political campaigns? Do you think Congress should look into the rules and enforcement of the Foreign Agents Registration Act and Lobbying Disclosure Act?

33. A provision of the Special Counsel regulations (28 CFR 600.4) provide for non-criminal remedies for wrongdoing discovered by the investigation. What, if any, such remedies did you consider might be appropriate? Did you make any recommendations to the Attorney General or Acting Attorney General under this provision?

34. If Congress wanted to determine for itself the strength of the case of obstruction or abuse of power, not necessarily according to criminal law standards of proof, who would be the most important potential witnesses for the public to hear from and for Congress to call on to testify?

35. What major investigative questions remain, and how would you recommend Congress playing a role in answering them?




Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.justsecurity.org/64137/what-congress-should-ask-robert-mueller-when-he-testifies/ (https://www.justsecurity.org/64137/what-congress-should-ask-robert-mueller-when-he-testifies/)

2/2
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 29, 2019, 10:30:53 am
Full transcript from Mueller's press conference this morning:

(https://i.imgur.com/QGPuOEb.jpg)


(https://i.imgur.com/XCbp9sH.jpg)


(https://i.imgur.com/vHY5RaL.jpg)


(https://i.imgur.com/fTs92Dm.jpg)


Would You Like To Know More?
www.justice.gov (http://www.justice.gov)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on June 25, 2019, 06:30:44 pm
Tuesday, 25th June 2019
Mueller to testify publicly on July 17, 2019 following a subpoena
by Jeremy Herb and Manu Raju


(https://i.imgur.com/yDFFvCF.jpg)



Special counsel Robert Mueller has agreed to testify publicly following a subpoena from the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees, the panels announced Tuesday.

Mueller will testify publicly before both committees on Wednesday, July 17, according to a joint statement announcing the hearing.

This story is breaking and will be updated.








Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/mueller-to-testify-publicly-on-july-17-following-a-subpoena/ar-AADqFiL?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/mueller-to-testify-publicly-on-july-17-following-a-subpoena/ar-AADqFiL?ocid=spartanntp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 11, 2019, 05:18:26 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/rksYhTL.jpg)

THE LAST SPEECH ON IMPEACHMENT --- THADDEUS STEVENS CLOSING THE DEBATE IN THE HOUSE.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on September 21, 2019, 09:00:30 am
Thursday, 19th September 2019
My Crimes Can’t Be Investigated While [I’m pretending to be] President
by Bess Levin

(https://i.imgur.com/n0zm5Ar.jpg)


As you may or may not have heard, puppetine refused to release his tax returns while running from prosecution for president, claiming, falsely, that an audit prevented him from doing so but that the public would see them just as soon as he got the green light.

Two years and 242 days after moving into the Executive Mansion that, of course, has not happened.

Instead, puppetine has sicced his Treasury secretary, attorney general, and various personal lawyers on anyone attempting to get their hands on the information, in a manner suggesting the details within could make a person look quite bad.

Typically, puppetine’s attorneys have argued that such requests, like the ones from various House committees, constitute “PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT” or supposedly lack “a legitimate legislative purpose.”

On Thursday, though, they came up with a novel new argument:

It’s illegal to investigate a sitting president for any crimes he may have committed.

In a lawsuit filed today against Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., who recently subpoenaed eight years of puppetine’s tax returns to determine if the puppetine Organization falsified business records relating to Stormy Daniels payments, the acting-president’s lawyers claim such a request is unconstitutional because the founding fathers believed sitting presidents should not be subject to the criminal process.


“The framers of our Constitution understood that state and local prosecutors would be tempted to criminally investigate the president to advance their own careers and to advance their political agendas,” the suit reads.


“And they likewise understood that having to defend against these actions would distract the president from his constitutional duties.”

(https://i.imgur.com/felAfWI.jpg)

Strangely, actual legal experts aren’t entirely convinced of this argument.


“Even assuming that the president cannot be indicted while in office, it does not follow that his business and associates are likewise immune from investigation,” Harry Sandick, a former federal prosecutor, told Bloomberg.

“The complaint makes light of the idea that ruling in their favor would elevate the president above the law, but it certainly seems as if the president views himself as above the law.”

(https://i.imgur.com/HwnSpbt.jpg)

Vance, who agreed not to enforce the subpoena—issued to puppetine’s longtime accounting firm Mazars USA—until a scheduled September 25 hearing, is investigating if executives at the puppetine Organization filed false business records concerning hush money payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who both claim to have had affairs with puppetine, charges he, naturally, denies.


The acting-president’s former fixer, michael cohen, admitted to arranging the hush money payments and released audio of him discussing the Daniels payment with puppetine.

Thursday’s lawsuit is just one of a handful of attempts by the acting-president to keep his totally legit finances secret.

He’s also sued to block House Democrats’ demands for his tax returns and is seeking a court order to stop Congress from obtaining his New York state returns, which a recently passed law allows them to do.

Additionally, his legal team is challenging California’s new requirement that any presidential candidate must release their tax returns to get on the primary ballot.


And he’s appealing orders by federal judges in Washington and New York that would let three House committees receive his records from Mazars, Capital One Financial, and Deutsche Bank, the latter of which reportedly has seen at least some of his taxes.

(https://i.imgur.com/jFZZLKH.png)

It’s almost as though someone has got something to hide!


















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https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/09/donald-trump-tax-returns-lawsuit (https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/09/donald-trump-tax-returns-lawsuit)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on September 22, 2019, 09:03:05 pm
Sunday, 22nd September 2019
Just the facts, in 40 sentences.
by David Leonhardt

(https://i.imgur.com/UTRCkCC.jpg)




Sometimes it’s worth stepping back to look at the full picture.

He has pressured a foreign leader to interfere in the 2020 American presidential election.

He urged a foreign country to intervene in the 2016 presidential election.

He divulged classified information to foreign officials.

He publicly undermined American intelligence agents while standing next to a hostile foreign autocrat.

He hired a national security adviser whom he knew had secretly worked as a foreign lobbyist.

He encourages foreign leaders to enrich him and his family by staying at his hotels.

He genuflects to murderous dictators.

He has alienated America’s closest allies.

He lied to the American people about his company’s business dealings in Russia.

He tells new lies virtually every week — about the economy, voter fraud, even the weather.

He spends hours on end watching television and days on end staying at resorts.

He often declines to read briefing books or perform other basic functions of a president’s job.

He has aides, as well as members of his own party in Congress, who mock him behind his back as unfit for office.

He has repeatedly denigrated a deceased United States senator who was a war hero.

He insulted a Gold Star family — the survivors of American troops killed in action.

He described a former first lady, not long after she died, as “nasty.”

He described white supremacists as “some very fine people.”

He told four women of color, all citizens and members of Congress, to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came.”

He made a joke about Pocahontas during a ceremony honoring Native American World War II veterans.

He launched his political career by falsely claiming that the first black president was not really American.

He launched his presidential campaign by describing Mexicans as “rapists.”

He has described women, variously, as “a dog,” “a pig” and “horseface,” as well as “bleeding badly from a facelift” and having “blood coming out of her wherever.”

He has been accused of sexual assault or misconduct by multiple women.

He enthusiastically campaigned for a Senate candidate who was accused of molesting multiple teenage girls.

He waved around his arms, while giving a speech, to ridicule a physically disabled person.

He has encouraged his supporters to commit violence against his political opponents.

He has called for his opponents and critics to be investigated and jailed.

He uses a phrase popular with dictators — “the enemy of the people” — to describe journalists.

He attempts to undermine any independent source of information that he does not like, including judges, scientists, journalists, election officials, the F.B.I., the C.I.A., the Congressional Budget Office and the National Weather Service.

He has tried to harass the chairman of the Federal Reserve into lowering interest rates.

He said that a judge could not be objective because of his Mexican heritage.

He obstructed justice by trying to influence an investigation into his presidential campaign.

He violated federal law by directing his lawyer to pay $280,000 in hush money to cover up two apparent extramarital affairs.

He made his fortune partly through wide-scale financial fraud.

He has refused to release his tax returns.

He falsely accused his predecessor of wiretapping him.

He claimed that federal law-enforcement agents and prosecutors regularly fabricated evidence, thereby damaging the credibility of criminal investigations across the country.

He has ordered children to be physically separated from their parents.

He has suggested that America is no different from or better than Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

He has called America a “hellhole.”

He is the acting-president of the United States, and he is a threat to virtually everything that the United States should stand for.
















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https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/22/opinion/trump-ukraine-whistle-blower.html (https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/22/opinion/trump-ukraine-whistle-blower.html)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on September 22, 2019, 11:33:19 pm
Sunday, 22nd September 2019 (originally published Monday, 17th December 2019)
President Ulysses S. Grant was once arrested for speeding on a horse-drawn carriage, proving the POTUS is not above the law
by John Haltiwanger






As the acting-president's legal woes grow like an unrelenting fungus, much of the country seems to be sitting and wondering:

why hasn't he been charged yet?

The answer is that it's complicated.

It's difficult to indict a sitting president, and goes against Justice Department policy.

The process surrounding impeachment is also convoluted, and it's unclear whether the crimes in which puppetine has been implicated merit going down that road as of yet.

But as legal experts debate this topic, The Washington Post on Sunday reminded us of at least once instance in US history in which a commander-in-chief learned that no person in the country is above the law.

In 1872, President Ulysses S. Grant was arrested for speeding on his horse-drawn carriage in Washington, DC.

This was not an impeachable offense, but Grant still faced consequences.

Grant, the general who helped lead the Union to victory in the Civil War, was arrested at the corner of 13th and M streets in the nation's capital.

The story of his arrest was once told in a September 27, 1908, edition of the Washington Evening Star with the headline:

"Only Policeman Who Ever Arrested a President."


(https://i.imgur.com/IXNHbd6.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/sJ2FCIV.jpg)

The police officer who arrested him was a black man who fought in the Civil War named William H. West, who gave his account of the incident to The Star, which The Post dug up.

Grant apparently had a penchant for speeding and a love for fast horses and had more than one run-in with West.

On the first occasion, the president was somewhat sassy with the officer as he stopped his carriage.

The city was having problems with speeding at the time, and a mother and child had recently been injured as a result.

Grant said, "Well, officer, what do you want with me?"
 
West replied,

"I want to inform you, Mr. President, that you are violating the law by speeding along this street. Your fast driving, sir, has set the example for a lot of other gentlemen."

Grant apologized and told the officer it would not happen again.

But on the very next day Grant was speeding so fast through Georgetown in an area West was patrolling it took the officer an entire block to slow the president down.

Grant apparently greeted the officer with a smile and looked like a "schoolboy who had been caught in a guilty act by a teacher."

West informed the president he'd violated the city's speeding laws, again.

"I cautioned you yesterday, Mr. President, about fast driving, and you said, sir, that it would not occur again," West reportedly told Grant.

(https://i.imgur.com/QMbMcG1.jpg)

"I am very sorry, Mr. President, to have to do it, for you are the chief of the nation, and I am nothing but a policeman, but duty is duty, sir, and I will have to place you under arrest."

The president and other speeders were taken to the local police station.

Officers at the station were reportedly unsure if they could charge a sitting president if he'd not been impeached.

In the end, Grant paid a $20 bond but didn't show up to court.
 





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https://www.businessinsider.com/can-a-president-be-indicted-ulysses-s-grant-was-once-arrested-for-speeding-2018-12 (https://www.businessinsider.com/can-a-president-be-indicted-ulysses-s-grant-was-once-arrested-for-speeding-2018-12)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on October 26, 2019, 11:25:05 am
Saturday, 26th october 2019
Judge rules DOJ MUST turn over Mueller grand jury material to House Democrats
by Kyle Cheney & Josh Gerstein

(https://i.imgur.com/bBOGXxH.jpg)




A federal judge on Friday ruled that the Justice Department must turn over former special counsel Robert Mueller's grand jury evidence to the House Judiciary Committee, a groundbreaking victory for Democrats in their effort to investigate whether the acting-president should be impeached for obstructing the long-running Russia probe.

(https://i.imgur.com/AZ7Hh3C.jpg)

In a double victory for Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Judge Beryl Howell — the chief federal judge in Washington — ruled that the impeachment inquiry Democrats have launched is valid even though the House hasn't taken a formal vote on it.


The decision rejects arguments by DOJ and congressional Republicans that a formal vote is necessary to launch impeachment proceedings.

"Even in cases of presidential impeachment, a House resolution has never, in fact, been required to begin an impeachment inquiry," Howell determined, dismissing GOP arguments as unsupported.

Republicans had claimed that the House Judiciary Committee cannot begin impeachment proceedings without a formal vote of the House — and that even if it could, Pelosi is not empowered to simply grant that authority to the Judiciary Committee.


But Howell rejected the arguments out of hand.

"These contentions are, at worst, red herrings and, at best, incorrect," ruled Howell, an appointee of former President Barack Obama.

In her ruling, Howell ordered the DOJ to provide by Oct. 30


(https://i.imgur.com/QjBrOn0.jpg)

"[a]ll portions of Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Report on the Investigation Into Russian Interference In The 2016 Presidential Election that were redacted pursuant to" grand jury restrictions.

The order also requires the Justice Department to provide "any underlying transcripts or exhibits referenced in the portions of the Mueller Report that were redacted" pursuant to those restrictions.

“The court’s thoughtful ruling recognizes that our impeachment inquiry fully comports with the Constitution and thoroughly rejects the spurious Executive Mansion claims to the contrary,” said House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.)

A Justice Department spokeswoman said the DOJ is “reviewing the decision.”

(https://i.imgur.com/LXo64ay.png)

Democrats have contended that they need Mueller's grand jury transcripts in order to determine whether to bring articles of impeachment against puppetine for conduct revealed in the course of Mueller's investigation.


They've also argued that impeachment proceedings are part of a "judicial" process, which would qualify them for an exemption from traditional grand jury secrecy requirements.


In part, they argued, the Senate's removal trial has always been seen as a judicial process, particularly since it's presided over by the chief justice of the Supreme Court.

The Justice Department rejected that argument, contending that even the Senate impeachment trial fails to qualify as a judicial proceeding.


DOJ argued that the chief justice's role is primarily administrative.

Howell called DOJ's argument "puzzling."

“The Federalist Papers, the text of the Constitution, and Supreme Court precedent all make clear — impeachment trials are judicial in nature and constitute judicial proceedings," she determined.

House Republicans have spent weeks arguing that Democrats' ongoing impeachment process is invalid in part because Pelosi has refused to sanction the effort with a vote on the House floor.

(https://i.imgur.com/VUvkmZ3.jpg)

But here, too, Howell cast aside their reasoning as "fatally flawed."

"The precedential support cited for the 'House resolution' test is cherry-picked and incomplete, and more significantly, this test has no textual support in the U.S. Constitution, the governing rules of the House, or [grand jury secrecy rules], as interpreted in binding decisions," she writes.

Howell contended that the "most troubling" aspect of DOJ's interpretation of grand jury secrecy rules is that it would make presidents almost entirely immune to accountability.

(https://i.imgur.com/ggnWBCq.jpg)

DOJ already maintains that presidents can't be indicted, Howell notes.

"Yet, under DOJ’s reading of [the grand jury secrecy rules], the Executive Branch would be empowered to wall off any evidence of presidential misconduct from the House by placing that evidence before a grand jury."

The rule, she said, must not be read to impede the House from exercising its “sole Power of Impeachment."

Howell also made clear that Pelosi's declaration of a full House impeachment process last month had a significant influence on determining whether the House is engaged in a valid impeachment inquiry.


DOJ had argued that Pelosi's mixed messages on impeachment suggested there hadn't been a true inquiry occurring, even though the Judiciary Committee claimed to be engaged in one since late July.

"Some of DOJ’s arguments... have been mooted due to developments in the possible impeachment of the acting-president since the pending application was filed," Howell noted.


“DOJ, for instance, initially argued that statements by the Speaker and the House Majority Leader showed that the House Democratic caucus was ‘not even close’ to an ‘impeachment inquiry.’


That may have been true in June, but not now, after the Speaker herself announced in September that the full House is 'moving forward with an official impeachment inquiry.'"

Howell also noted that the Justice Department's position that sitting presidents are immune from indictment "has never been adopted, sanctioned, or in any way approved by a court."


And she points out that even House Republicans disagree with DOJ on whether a Senate impeachment trial is "judicial" in nature.

And Howell took particular issue with a sharply worded letter sent by Executive Mansion counsel Pat Cipollone on Oct. 8 to House Democrats declaring their intent to block any cooperation by White House officials with the ongoing impeachment inquiry.


Though the Justice Department has claimed that the House has failed to exhaust all avenues to obtain the information it is seeking, Howell cited Cipollone's letter as proof that any other means would be fruitless.

“These arguments smack of farce. The reality is that DOJ and the Executive Mansion have been openly stonewalling the House’s efforts to get information by subpoena and by agreement, and the Executive Mansion has flatly stated that the Administration will not cooperate with congressional requests for information," Howell argued.

"The Executive’s Mansion stated policy of non-cooperation with the impeachment inquiry weighs heavily in favor of disclosure.”

The ruling could also have implications for another impeachment- related court case brought by the Judiciary Committee.


(https://i.imgur.com/jtjWPdf.jpg)

An Aug. 7 suit by the committee seeks to enforce a subpoena for testimony from former Executive's Mansion counsel Don McGahn, who the committee has called their most important witness in determining whether puppetine committed impeachable counts of obstruction of justice.

A hearing in that matter is set for Oct. 31.

(https://i.imgur.com/4DtgW5l.jpg)







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https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/judge-rules-doj-must-turn-over-mueller-grand-jury-material-to-house-democrats/ar-AAJmMQW?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/judge-rules-doj-must-turn-over-mueller-grand-jury-material-to-house-democrats/ar-AAJmMQW?ocid=spartanntp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on November 16, 2019, 10:50:29 am
Thursday, 24th October 2019
United States of America V Rudolph W Giuliani
by Barbera McQuade & Joyce Vance

(https://i.imgur.com/J4Ktxsp.jpg)



While the Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel has issued legal opinions that a sitting president cannot be indicted, there is no similar prohibition on indicting a president’s personal lawyer or other potential co-conspirators involved in committing a federal crime.

Based on facts already in the public record, we believe that Rudolph Giuliani could be indicted now for conspiracy to interfere with the fair administration of elections, conspiracy to commit bribery, and contempt of Congress.

Below is what an indictment of Giuliani might look like if it were drafted today.

It’s important to note that we are, to some degree, speculating here. We are considering charges that could be brought against Giuliani, using publicly available information.

Prosecutors obviously don’t do this.

They use only evidence that they are confident is correct and that they believe will be admissible in court.

And their sense of the evidence will be more nuanced that what is publicly available.

Nonetheless, with so much information now available, it is helpful to understand the seriousness of Giuliani’s conduct by seeing how it lines up to the crimes proscribed by the federal criminal code and whether there is evidence of criminality in what Ambassador Bill Taylor called the “irregular channel” for conducting foreign policy in Ukraine that involved Giuliani and others.

(Taylor, a former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, currently heads the U.S. embassy in Ukraine as Chief of Mission.)

The three counts we outline represent just the crimes that could be proven by the public record alone.

No doubt, if Giuliani is under investigation, prosecutors would want to probe additional potential crimes relating to his role, if any, in the recent campaign finance scheme charged against his associates Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman.

It is entirely possible, but not yet clear, that some or all of those counts could be superseded to add Giuliani as a defendant.

Prosecutors would also want to consider whether Giuliani was acting as an unregistered foreign agent in violation of the law when, as reported, he asked then-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to intervene in the criminal prosecution of Reza Zarrab, a Turkey-based businessman, for money laundering and violation of U.S. sanctions on Iran.

Of course, a grand jury investigation related to the allegations we focus on here could uncover additional aggravating or mitigating facts that would inform potential charges against Giuliani.

Prosecutors would likely use grand jury subpoenas and court orders to obtain Giuliani’s bank records and income tax returns to identify his sources of income and movement of money.

Prosecutors would also interview individuals with knowledge of Giuliani’s activity, perhaps including some of the same former and current State Department officials who have been testifying before Congress.

In addition, prosecutors could offer cooperation deals to Parnas and Fruman, as well as to their less visible co-defendants David Correia and Andrey Kukushkin.

If they were to promise to plead guilty to their crimes and provide truthful and comprehensive information, prosecutors could offer to make that information known to the sentencing judge and recommend a reduction in their sentences.

Prosecutors would then work to corroborate the testimony of the cooperators, whose testimony is subject to skepticism because of the benefit they receive in exchange.

If their testimony can be supported by the testimony of other witnesses or documents, such as phone or bank records, then they could be used as important narrators to the case that is presented at trial against Giuliani.

Only after the entire investigation of Giuliani is complete would prosecutors decide whether to charge, and if so, which violations to include in an indictment.

We do so here without the benefit of facts known only to investigators and protected by grand jury secrecy rules.

There could be mitigating facts or defenses that are not publicly known that would cause us to decline to file charges.

And, as with any indictment, a defendant is presumed innocent until he is proven guilty at trial beyond a reasonable doubt.

When making charging decisions, prosecutors ask not only whether a crime has been committed, but whether a substantial federal interest would be advanced by filing charges.

We believe that the charges contained here represent a substantial federal interest.

An individual who conspires to inject foreign interference into a U.S. election attacks the very heart of democracy.

Our laws prohibit foreign influence in our elections because our founding fathers believed that only American citizens should decide who holds public office in the United States, and we recognize that foreign governments and their citizens act in their own interests, not ours.

Criminal cases are prosecuted for several reasons, including deterring illegal conduct, promoting respect for the rule of law, and protecting public safety. A prosecution here would advance all of these important goals.

A few observations on the charge for contempt of Congress deserve mention. 

Giuliani’s refusal to comply with a subpoena for documents, which was issued by the three House Committees conducting the impeachment inquiry, is a criminal offense.

In a letter to the Committees, Giuliani stated that he would not comply with the subpoena because it is part of an “unconstitutional, baseless and illegitimate ‘impeachment inquiry.'”

Witnesses may challenge the scope of a subpoena as harassing, oppressive or overly broad by filing a motion to quash in court.

They may not simply ignore the subpoena and defy Congress’s authority as one of three co-equal branches of government.

The Constitution gives the power of impeachment to the House, and allows it to fashion its own rules for handling impeachment.

There is no requirement that the full House take a vote before it may begin an impeachment inquiry, and the House has the authority to investigate any matter on which it may act, including impeachment.

Giuliani’s conduct violates the federal criminal statute prohibiting witnesses from defying subpoenas issued by Congress or its committees.

A subpoenaed witness before Congress can no more ignore a subpoena than can a witness in a federal trial.

To permit individuals to selectively ignore such legal processes because they don’t want to comply, no matter who they are and who they represent, is a slippery slope to a lawless society.

However, before a U.S. Attorney may charge a witness with contempt of Congress, the contempt statute requires the completion of certain technical steps.

The Committees must report the failure of the witness to comply with the subpoena to the House and the Speaker of the House, who must then certify the statement of facts regarding the failure to comply to the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia.

Two final thoughts about the form of the mock indictment that follows.

If this were an actual indictment, many of the names would be replaced with generic identifiers, such as Candidate -1 or Company-A.

The Justice Department requires this practice to protect the reputations of individuals and entities that are not charged with any crimes.

A jury is told the identities of these individuals and entities at trial.

We have left the names in the indictment, however, for clarity for readers.

We refer to President Donald Trump as Individual-1, an unindicted co-conspirator.

At paragraph 2, we describe Giuliani as an agent as well as an attorney for Individual-1 to make it clear that not all of their communications will be protected by the attorney-client privilege.

This privilege is limited to communications between a lawyer and client for the purposes of obtaining legal advice, and does not protect communications regarding an ongoing scheme to commit a crime or fraud.

Nor does it protect communications that have been divulged to others.


IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
*
*
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
v.
RUDOLPH W. GIULIANI,
Defendant
*
*
*
CRIMINAL NO.
(18 U.S.C. §§ 371, 201; 2 U.S.C. § 192)
*
*
*
MOCK INDICTMENT

(A THOUGHT EXPERIMENT)

The Grand Jury for the District of Columbia charges:

COMMON ALLEGATIONS

Introduction

1.     The United States of America, through its departments and agencies, regulates the activities of foreign individuals and entities in and affecting the United States in order to prevent, disclose, and counteract improper foreign influence on U.S. elections and on the U.S. political system. The Federal Election Commission is a federal agency that administers the Federal Election Campaign Act (“FECA”). Among other things, the FECA prohibits foreign nationals from making certain expenditures or financial disbursements for the purpose of influencing federal elections, and prohibits any person from soliciting, accepting or receiving a thing of value from a foreign national in connection with a federal, state or local election. 52 U.S.C. § 30121(a)(2).

2.     At all times relevant to this Indictment, Defendant RUDOLPH W. GIULIANI was a private U.S. citizen licensed to practice law in the State of New York. At all times relevant to this indictment, GIUILIANI was serving as a private attorney and agent for Individual-1.

3.     At all times relevant to this Indictment, Individual-1 was a public official, and a declared candidate for the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

Events in Ukraine

4.    Ukraine is an independent foreign nation state that borders Russia and is a former Soviet Republic.

5.    In or around March 2014, Russia invaded Ukraine and purported to annex the Crimean Peninsula, which Russia continued to occupy at all times relevant to this Indictment. The following month, Russian forces invaded the eastern Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Luhansk and, with support of certain local forces, took control, starting a war that has continued at all times relevant to this Indictment and has killed more than 13,000 people. As a result of the Russian invasions, the United States imposed economic sanctions on Russia, the United Nations refused to recognize the new government in Crimea, and the inter-governmental political forum of industrialized nations known as the Group of 8 (“G-8”) expelled Russia and became known as the “G-7.”

6.   In or around April 2014, Hunter Biden, the son of former Vice President Joe Biden, joined the board of Burisma Holdings, an oil and gas company in Ukraine. Joe Biden is a candidate for president in 2020. Burisma was founded in 2002 by Mykola Zlochevsky, who had served as a cabinet member in the administrations of pro-Russian presidents of Ukraine.

7.   In or around August 2014, Ukrainian Prosecutor General Vitaly Yarema opened an investigation of Zlochevsky on suspicion of “unlawful enrichment.”

8.   On or about October 14, 2014, the Ukrainian parliament passed a law establishing the National Anti-Corruption Bureau (“NABU”) to combat public corruption. NABU was created in part because of the recognized ineffectiveness and corruption of the Prosecutor General’s Office.

9.   In or around February 2015, Viktor Shokin became the Prosecutor General of Ukraine. Throughout late 2015 and early 2016, U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, and Vice President Biden were critical of Shokin for failing to pursue corruption investigations, explicitly including investigations of Zlochevsky.

10.    In or around March 2016, Shokin was dismissed as Prosecutor General.

11.    On or about May 12, 2016, Yuriy Lutsenko was appointed Prosecutor General.

12.    In or around September 2016, a court in Kyiv, Ukraine, ordered the case against Zlochevsky closed because no evidence of wrongdoing had been presented.

13.    On or about September 28, 2018, the U.S. Congress passed a spending bill for the Department of Defense that included $250 million in military aid under the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative to help Ukraine contain Russian aggression in Crimea and other parts of the sovereign territory of Ukraine.

14.   In or around March 2019, Lutsenko opened investigations into the 2016 presidential election and Burisma.

15.   In or around April 2019, Hunter Biden resigned from the Board of Burisma.

16.   On April 21, 2019, Volodomyr Zelenskyy was elected President of Ukraine.

17.   On April 25, 2019, Joe Biden announced his candidacy for President.

18.   On or about May 18, 2019, Ukraine Prosecutor General Lutsenko said that he had no evidence of wrongdoing by Hunter Biden or Joe Biden, and that neither of the Bidens nor Burisma were the focus of any investigations.

19.   On or about May 20, 2019, U.S. Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch was publicly recalled from Ukraine and removed from her post.

20.   On or about June 18, 2019, the Department of Defense announced the $250 million plan “for additional training, equipment, and advisory efforts to build the capacity of Ukraine’s armed forces.”

21.   On or about August 28, 2019, it was reported that another $141 million was included in the military aid package for Ukraine, for a total of $391 million.

22.   On or about September 12, 2019, the military aid funds were released to Ukraine.

COUNT ONE

(Conspiracy to Defraud the United States)

23.   Paragraphs 1 through 22 of this Indictment are re-alleged and incorporated by reference as if fully set forth herein.

24.   From in or around June 2017 to the present, in the District of Columbia and elsewhere, Defendant RUDOLPH W. GIULIANI and Individual-1, together and with others known and unknown to the Grand Jury, knowingly and intentionally conspired to defraud the United States by impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of the Federal Election Commission in administering federal requirements that prohibit soliciting, accepting or receiving a thing of value from a foreign national in connection with a federal election.
Object of the Conspiracy

25.   The conspiracy had as its object impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful governmental functions of the United States by dishonest means in order to interfere with the U.S. political and electoral process, including the 2020 presidential election.
Manner and Means of the Conspiracy

26.   Starting in or around June 2017, defendant GIULIANI and his co-conspirators began to negotiate with representatives of the Government of Ukraine to obtain a public announcement that it was investigating (a) whether Ukrainians, US officials, and Democrats had conspired to interfere in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, and (b) whether Burisma had been involved in corruption in connection to the Bidens.

27.   Defendant GIULIANI participated in meetings with representatives of the Government of Ukraine to advance these negotiations.

28.   Defendant GIULIANI kept Indvidual-1 informed of his negotiations with representatives of the Government of Ukraine.




1/2
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on November 16, 2019, 11:08:25 am
Overt Acts

29.   In furtherance of the Conspiracy, and to effect its illegal object, defendant GIULIANI and Individual-1, along with their co-conspirators, committed the following overt acts, as well as those set forth in paragraphs 1 through 28, which are re-alleged and incorporated by reference as though fully set forth herein.

30.   On or about June 8, 2017, defendant GIULIANI met with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Lutsenko in Ukraine.

31.   In or around late 2018, defendant GIULIANI spoke with Shokin via Skype, a videoconferencing application.

32.   In or around late 2018, defendant GIULIANI was introduced to Lutsenko by Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman. GIULIANI spoke with Lutsenko by telephone on several occasions, urging Lutsenko to open an investigation into Biden and Burisma, and inviting him to meet at his office in New York.

33.   In or around January 2019, defendant GIULIANI asked the U.S. Department of State to grant a visa to Shokin to come to the United States.

34.   In or around January 2019, defendant GIULIANI met with Lutsenko in New York multiple timesover a period of two or three days. During those meetings, GIULIANI asked Lutsenko about investigations into Zlochevsky and whether the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, was loyal to President Trump.

35.   In or around January 2019, during a meeting with Lutsenko, defendant GIULIANI telephoned Individual-1 to brief him on what he had learned.

36.   In or around February 2019, defendant GIULIANI, with Parnas, met with Lutsenko in Warsaw, Poland.

37.   On or about March 20, 2019, Individual-1 posted on Twitter a news article about a Ukrainian “plot” to help Hillary Clinton win the 2016 election. GIULIANI tweeted, “Keep your eye on Ukraine.”

38.   On or about April 21, 2019, Individual-1 telephoned Zelenskyy to congratulate him, and urged him to pursue investigations of corruption.

39.   In or around May 2019, GIULIANI planned a trip to Ukraine, and publicly discussed his plans of “meddling in an investigation,” stating that he planned to tell Ukrainian officials “that information will be very, very helpful to my client, and may turn out to be helpful to my government.” GIULIANI canceled the trip after Zelenskyy refused to meet with him.

40.   On May 11, 2019, GIULIANI stated in a cable television news interview that Zelenskyy was “surrounded by, literally, enemies of the president.” He repeated this allegation several times in the interview.

41.   On or about May 18, 2019, defendant GIULIANI posted on Twitter that President Zelenskyy “has surrounded himself with some people that are enemies of President Trump.”

42.   In or around May 2019, defendant GIULIANI, with Parnas and Fruman, met with Ukraine’s Special Anticorruption Prosecutor, Nazar Kholodnytskyy, and a former Ukrainian diplomat, Andriy Telizhenko, in Paris, France.

43.   On May 23, 2019, Individual-1 directed three senior U.S. officials to talk with GIULIANI about Individual-1’s concerns about Ukraine in response to requests for a White House meeting with Zelenskyy.

44.   On or about June 21, 2019, defendant GIULIANI posted on Twitter, “New Pres of Ukraine still silent on investigation of Ukrainian interference in 2016 election and alleged Biden bribery of Pres Poroshenko. Time for leadership and investigate both if you want to purge how Ukraine was abused by Hillary and Obama people.”

45.   In or about early to mid-July 2019, Individual-1 directed a subordinate to hold back approximately $391 million in military aid to Ukraine.

46.   On or about July 19, 2019, defendant GIULIANI spoke by telephone to Andriy Yermak, an aide to Zelenskyy. During the call, they discussed Individual-1’s demands for investigations and Zelenskyy’s desire for a meeting with Individual-1.

47.   On or about July 25, 2019, Individual-1 spoke by telephone to Zelenskyy, telling him that “the United States have been very, very good to Ukraine” but that the relationship has not been “reciprocal.” During the call, Individual-1 asked for investigations into Ukrainian interference into the 2016 U.S. presidential election and the Bidens, and told Zelenskyy several times to coordinate with GIULIANI.

48.   On or about August 2, 2019, defendant GIULIANI met with Yermak in Madrid, Spain, to persuade Ukraine to investigate the Bidens and Ukrainian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
All in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371.

COUNT TWO

(Conspiracy to Commit Bribery)

49.   Paragraphs 1 through 48 of this Indictment are re-alleged and incorporated by reference as if fully set forth herein.

50.   From in or around June 2017 to the present, in the District of Columbia and elsewhere, Defendant RUDOLPH W. GIULIANI and Individual-1, a public official, conspired with each other and others known and unknown to the Grand Jury to corruptly seek a thing of value, that is, an agreement by the government of Ukraine to publicly announce that it was investigating certain matters that were favorable to Individual-1’s political campaign, in return for being influenced in the performance of an official act, that is, releasing to Ukraine military aid that had been approved by Congress.
All in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 201(b)(2)(A) and 371.

COUNT THREE

(Contempt of Congress)

51.   On or about October 15, 2019, in the District of Columbia, Defendant RUDOLPH W. GIULIANI, having been summoned by the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the United States House of Representatives, the Committee on Foreign Affairs, and the Committee on Oversight and Reform to produce documents pertaining to an impeachment inquiry, willfully made default, in violation of Title 2, United States Code, Section 192.

____________________________
United States Attorney
District of Columbia

A TRUE BILL:

_________________________
Foreperson

Date:












Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.justsecurity.org/66705/united-states-of-america-v-rudolph-w-giuliani/ (https://www.justsecurity.org/66705/united-states-of-america-v-rudolph-w-giuliani/)


2/2
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 16, 2019, 11:51:41 am
Monday, 16th December 2019
Federal Criminal Offenses and the Impeachment of Donald J. Trump
by Andrew Weissmann, Sam Berger, Randall Eliason, Barbara McQuade, Paul Seamus Ryan, Susan Simpson, Gary Stein and Michael Stern

An excerpt:

4. Honest Services Fraud
by Barbara McQuade

As Congress considers the actions of President Donald Trump for purposes of impeachment, it is valuable to understand how well the crime of honest services fraud fits the conduct.

Honest services fraud occurs when a public official breaches his duty to act in the best interests of his constituents by performing an official act in exchange for personal gain.

The theory of the fraud is that members of the public have been defrauded or deprived of the honest services that they deserve from a government official.

In the criminal arena, federal statutes make it a crime to use the mail or wires, such as the telephone, for the purpose of depriving another of the intangible right of honest services (18 U.S.C. § 1346).

Congress has deemed honest services fraud to be serious enough to be punishable by up to 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both.

Prosecutors frequently charge honest services fraud against corrupt public officeholders.

Of course, when it comes to the acts of a president, conduct need not violate any criminal statute to be impeachable, though some overlap is possible.

Framers of the Constitution considered corruption to be an appropriate basis for the impeachment of a president.


(https://i.imgur.com/4C6S7Ky.jpg)

In Federalist Paper No. 65, Alexander Hamilton wrote that impeachment is intended to address

“the abuse or violation of some public trust.”


Honest services fraud, regardless of the technical elements of the statute, is the type of misconduct for which impeachment was intended.

Mr. Trump’s alleged misconduct came in the midst of an ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine.


(https://i.imgur.com/PmLgymX.jpg)

Russia invaded Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in 2014, and the resulting war has already claimed 13,000 lives.


To help repel Russian aggression, Congress, with bipartisan support, appropriated funds, among other things, to finance Ukraine’s acquisition of military equipment such as communications systems, medical equipment, rocket-propelled grenade launchers, sniper rifles, and “Javelins,” or anti-tank missiles used to attack Russian armored vehicles.

Since 2014, the United States has provided Ukraine with $1.5 billion in military aid and $320 million in other assistance.

For fiscal year 2019, Congress appropriated $250 million in military aid and another $141 in non-military aid for Ukraine.

As of the now-famous July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskyy, the funds had not been released to Ukraine.

The gist of the president’s conduct has become apparent from the summary of the July 25 call, the deposition and public hearings testimony of former and current government officials, and text and email messages.


During the call, Zelenskyy expressed the desire for more Javelins.

In response, Trump said,

“I would like you to do us a favor, though.”


Trump then went on to ask Zelenskyy to work with his personal attorney, Rudolph Giuliani, and U.S. Attorney General William Barr to investigate two matters:

interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and former Vice President Joe Biden’s alleged efforts to stop an investigation into his son.


Biden’s son Hunter Biden served as a member of the board of directors of Burisma, an energy company in Ukraine.

At the time of the call, Biden was Trump’s leading rival in the 2020 presidential campaign.

But the call itself is only part of the evidence.


Trump’s constant refrain to “read the transcript” appears to be a tactic to distract attention from the even more damaging testimony that has been provided by State Department, Defense Department, OMB, and National Security Council officials.


Trump’s ambassador to Ukraine Bill Taylor testified that in early September, he learned from a National Security Council official that


“the security assistance money would not come until President Zelenskyy committed to pursue the Burisma investigation.”

Taylor further testified that U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland told him that
“President Trump had told him that he wants President Zelenskyy to state publicly that Ukraine will investigate Burisma and alleged Ukrainian interference in the 2016 U.S. election.”

According to Taylor, Sondland said that “‘everything’ was dependent on such an announcement, including security assistance.

(Sondland) said that President Trump wanted President Zelenskyy ‘in a public box’ by making a public statement about ordering such an investigation.”

Another witness, Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, a former member of Trump’s National Security Council who listened in on the July 25 call, provided similar testimony.


Vindman said that “there was no doubt” that Trump demanded the investigations in exchange for the military aid as well as a meeting between Trump and Zelenskyy at the White House.

From this evidence, a conclusion can be drawn that Trump withheld military aid that had been approved by Congress to induce an ally to announce an investigation into his political rivals.


Only upon obtaining a personal benefit – a public announcement by Ukraine about the investigations into his political rivals – would Trump agree to release the aid.

Funds were finally released on September 11th, only after a whistleblower reported concerns about Trump’s call to Congress on September 9th.

This is the stuff of honest services fraud.

Trump’s supporters have argued that attaching conditions to aid happens all the time, and that even Biden demanded that Ukraine fire its public prosecutor because of his inaction in combating corruption.

But there is a difference between imposing conditions that are in the best interests of the country and imposing conditions that are in the president’s personal political interests.

A president who was fulfilling his duty to provide honest services to the American public would have released the aid, pursuant to the wishes of Congress, contingent only on any conditions that were in the best interest of the United States.


By delaying the aid to leverage an announcement about investigations, Trump acted contrary to the best interests of our country in a number of ways.

Congress had determined that containing Russian aggression was in the national security interests of the United States.

By withholding the aid, Trump was contravening this purpose.

Withholding aid also undercut our foreign policy by damaging our relationship with Ukraine, a key ally in the region.

In addition, attaching corrupt conditions on the release of military aid also undermined the credibility of the United States as an honest broker among our allies.

And the President compromised the credibility of the United States to demand that other nations eliminate corruption when he acts corruptly himself.

An exchange with the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State George Kent during his public testimony is instructive:



COMMITTEE COUNSEL: Mr. Kent, is pressuring Ukraine to conduct what I believe you’ve called political investigations a part of U.S. foreign policy to promote the rule of law in Ukraine and around the world?

KENT: It is not.

COMMITTEE COUNSEL: Is it in the national interest of the United States?

KENT: In my opinion, it is not.

COMMITTEE COUNSEL: So in other words, it is a purpose of our foreign policy to encourage foreign nations to refrain from conducting political investigations, is that right?

KENT: Correct. And, in fact, as a matter of policy, not of programming, we often times raise our concerns, usually in private, with countries that we feel are engaged in selective political prosecution and persecution of their opponents.



In the criminal arena, honest services fraud has been narrowed in recent years by a series of court cases.

In 2010, in United States v. Skilling, the Supreme Court held that honest services fraud is limited to situations in which the public official seeks a bribe or kickback.

In 2016, in United States v. McDonnell, the Court held that honest services fraud applies only where the public official performs an “official act” in exchange for the bribe or kickback.

The Court defined “official act” to mean “question, matter, cause, suit, proceeding or controversy” requiring “a formal exercise of governmental power,” “that is pending or may by law be brought before a public official,” who, in turn, “must make a decision or take an action.”

In the context of impeachment, these legal limitations would not apply as they do in a criminal case, but even if they did, they would not prevent the application of honest services fraud here.

By demanding a public announcement that Ukraine was investigating the 2016 election interference and the Bidens, Trump was seeking a bribe or kickback, satisfying the standard set forth in Skilling.

And although a White House meeting may not qualify as an official act under McDonnell, withholding military aid would certainly qualify.

When considering articles of impeachment and underlying crimes, honest services fraud may be the legal theory that best fits this conduct.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on December 17, 2019, 12:03:11 pm
Tuesday, 17th December 2019
Rick Gates, Key Witness In Mueller Investigation, Sentenced To 45 Days In Jail
by Ryan Lucas

(https://i.imgur.com/yO81IQe.jpg)




Rick Gates, a former top Trump campaign official who pleaded guilty to a range of crimes before becoming a key witness in the Russia investigation, was sentenced to 45 days in jail on Tuesday.

Judge Amy Berman Jackson also sentenced Gates to three years of probation and ordered him to pay a $20,000 fine.

Gates and his ex-business partner, onetime Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, were among the first individuals charged as part of special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation.

The men were indicted in Washington in October 2017 for conspiracy, money laundering and other alleged crimes.

Prosecutors brought more charges against them four months later in a separate but related case in Virginia.

The day after the second slate of charges was unsealed, Gates, who had served as the Trump campaign's deputy chairman, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and making false statements and agreed to cooperate with the government.
 
Prosecutors say that since signing his plea deal, Gates has provided "extraordinary assistance" to the government.

He met with investigators more than 50 times, giving Mueller's office and other prosecutors "truthful information," the government said in its sentencing memo.

Jackson said she recognized the contributions Gates had made to prosecutors' work but couldn't overlook his admissions of wrongdoing in connection with the other charges he'd faced.
 
The judge said Gates' jail time could be served on weekends or on a schedule he arranged with his probation officer.

Jackson said she was satisfied Gates has "in very real ways accepted responsibility for his actions" and that he would no longer violate the law.

"I'm 100% certain the criminal justice system is not going to see you again," she said.

Gates spoke briefly before the judge announced the sentence to acknowledge his lawbreaking and repeat his request that he receive probation only.

"I accept complete responsibility for my actions. ... I greatly regret the mistakes I made," Gates said.

He asked for leniency and told the judge:

"I hope and pray you'll grant that to me."

Gates' most prominent turn as government witness came in Manafort's bank and tax fraud trial in Virginia, where Gates testified that he committed crimes at Manafort's direction.

Manafort, the longtime political operator who served as Trump's campaign chairman, had been a mentor to Gates.

Manafort was found guilty on eight of the 18 charges in that case.

He later pleaded guilty in the separate case in Washington.

Manafort was ultimately sentenced to nearly 7.5 years in prison.

Gates' cooperation extended far beyond the Manafort case.

He also provided testimony in two other trials that were born out of the Mueller probe — one against the former business partner of President Trump's first national security adviser, Michael Flynn; the other against former Obama White House counsel Greg Craig.

"In short, under exceedingly difficult circumstances and under intense public scrutiny, Gates has worked earnestly to provide the government with everything it has asked of him and has fulfilled all obligations under his plea agreement," the government said in its sentencing memo.

The government said the guideline for Gates is four to five years of prison.

Prosecutors asked for a more lenient sentence "based on his substantial assistance," and it did not oppose Gates' request for probation.
















Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.npr.org/2019/12/17/788490826/rick-gates-key-witness-in-mueller-investigation-sentenced-to-45-days-in-jail (https://www.npr.org/2019/12/17/788490826/rick-gates-key-witness-in-mueller-investigation-sentenced-to-45-days-in-jail)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on January 16, 2020, 10:56:38 am
Thursday, 16th January 2020
Federal Watchdog Finds That Trump Broke the Law by Withholding Ukrainian Aid
by  Stephen A. Crockett Jr.

(https://i.imgur.com/cHqKUtr.jpg)





Did you know that there is a federal watchdog group that holds the government accountable?

I didn’t either.

But apparently, the Government Accountability Office has put a ring (and by “ring,” I mean handcuffs) on it and made it official:

Trump broke the law when he withheld congressionally-approved aid to Ukraine last year.

According to CNN, the GAO found Thursday that the White House budget office “violated the Impoundment Control Act, which says that funds appropriated by Congress cannot be withheld by the White House.”

“Faithful execution of the law does not permit the President to substitute his own policy priorities for those that Congress has enacted into law. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) withheld funds for a policy reason, which is not permitted under the Impoundment Control Act (ICA). The withholding was not a programmatic delay. Therefore, we conclude that OMB violated the ICA,” the GAO said, CNN notes.

And while we are on an acronym kick, I would like to add that the NFL violated BLM and MLK.


CNN notes that the president was in his Vladimir Putin dictatorship bag back in July 2019 when he placed a hold on Ukraine aid in a quid pro quo effort that included releasing Ukraine’s money only after they announced an investigation into political rival Joe Biden and his son, Hunter.

Government agencies were notified at a July 18 meeting that Ukraine’s aid had been frozen at the direction of the president,

“a week before a phone call between President Donald Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, which later became the reason an impeachment inquiry was launched into the President,” CNN reports.














Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.theroot.com/federal-watchdog-finds-that-trump-broke-the-law-by-with-1841040589 (https://www.theroot.com/federal-watchdog-finds-that-trump-broke-the-law-by-with-1841040589)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on February 23, 2020, 02:58:18 am
Sunday, 23rd February 2o2o
Department of Homeland Security whistleblower found dead with gunshot wound in California
by Kerry Picket

(https://i.imgur.com/z8dQoh8.jpg)




Philip Haney, a former Homeland Security Department official during the Obama administration who blew the whistle on his own agency, was found dead Friday with a gunshot wound about 40 miles east of Sacramento, California.

The Amador County Sheriff's office confirmed to the Washington Examiner that deputies and detectives responded to reports Friday morning at 10:12 a.m. of a male subject on the ground with a gunshot wound in the area of Highway 124 and Highway 16 in Plymouth, California.

"Upon their arrival, they located and identified 66-year-old Philip Haney, who was deceased and appeared to have suffered a single, self-inflicted gunshot wound. A firearm was located next to Haney and his vehicle. This investigation is active and ongoing. No further details will be released at this time," the sheriff's office said in a statement.

The Amador County Sheriff's office would not respond to any further questions.

According to sources close to Haney, he was recently in contact with top officials about returning to work for the DHS.

Additionally, Haney was engaged to be married.

As a whistleblower, Haney testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in June 2016 that DHS ordered him to delete hundreds of files of people with ties to Islamist terrorist groups, arguing several terrorist attacks against people in the United States could have been prevented if certain files had not been scrubbed.

“It is very plausible that one or more of the subsequent terror attacks on the homeland could have been prevented if more subject matter experts in the Department of Homeland Security had been allowed to do our jobs back in late 2009,” Haney wrote in an opinion piece for the Hill in February 2016.

“It is demoralizing — and infuriating — that today, those elusive dots are even harder to find, and harder to connect, than they were during the winter of 2009.”

Republicans on Capitol Hill questioned former President Barack Obama's homeland security secretary, Jeh Johnson, about Haney’s allegations.

"Was Mr. Haney's testimony that the Department of Homeland Security order over 800 documents ... altered or deleted accurate?" Sen. Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican, asked Johnson, who bristled at the question.

"I have no idea. I don't know who Mr. Haney is. I wouldn't know him if he walked into the room," he said.

The Washington Examiner received a text message from Haney on November 11th which mentioned plans to write a sequel to his first book, See Something Say Nothing: A Homeland Security Officer Exposes the Government's Submission to Jihad, which described his experience at DHS.

"Odd (surreal reality) that I was a highly visible whistleblower ... that virtually no one listened to, while this guy remains invisible, but is treated like an anointed oracle from above," Haney said in the Nov. 11 text, referring to alleged Ukraine whistleblower Eric Ciaramella.

"However, my story is still live, i.e., there's still more to come. It'll be called 'National Security Meltdown.'"

Haney added, "I have a severely hyper-organized archive of everything that's happened since See Something, Say Nothing (SSSN) was published in May of 2016. The National Security Meltdown sequel will pick up right where SSSN left off. My intention is to have it ready by early-to mid-Spring of 2020 (just before the political sound wave hits), then ride that wave all the way to the Nov. elections."
















Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/obama-dhs-whistleblower-found-dead-with-gunshot-wound-in-california (https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/obama-dhs-whistleblower-found-dead-with-gunshot-wound-in-california)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 10, 2020, 10:55:49 am
Tuesday, 10th March 2o2o
(https://i.imgur.com/YT8JqFE.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/Tuwib3s.jpg)

DC Circuit affirms district court ruling the executive branch to provide to the House of Representatives redacted portions of the Mueller Report.


Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on March 19, 2020, 11:37:16 am
Thursday, 19th March 2o2o
Barr Is Dismantling Charges Filed by Mueller
by Barbara McQuade

(https://i.imgur.com/8iuBllj.jpg)



Another curious filing by the Department of Justice should not be lost amid news about COVID-19.

In yet another reversal in a case initiated by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, DOJ filed a motion this week to dismiss charges against two Russian businesses.

The Justice Department has already filed revised memoranda seeking more lenient sentences for associates of drumphf.

And now, it has filed a motion to dismiss the charges against Concord Management and Consulting LLC and Concord Catering, companies run by a man known as “Putin’s chef.”

In 2018, Mueller indicted the two businesses along with 13 Russian individuals and the Internet Research Agency, alleging conspiracy to defraud the United States by engaging in a disinformation campaign to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.

The Concord entities are controlled by Yevgeny Prigozhin, a wealthy businessman with ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Prigozhin was one of the Russian individuals who were sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury for election interference.

DOJ has already filed revised memos reducing its sentencing recommendations for Michael Flynn, drumphf’s former national security adviser who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his discussions with the Russian ambassador.

It has done the same for Roger Stone, who was convicted at trial for obstructing a congressional investigation into Russian interference.

In the Stone case, the revised sentencing memo came only after drumphf tweeted that the government’s initial sentencing recommendation was “horrible,” “very unfair” and a “miscarriage of justice.”

Timothy Shea, the former aide to Attorney General William Barr who replaced the D.C. U.S. Attorney in January, overruled the sentencing recommendation of career prosecutors, who then  withdrew from the case.

One prosecutor resigned from DOJ altogether.

In the election disinformation case, Concord Management was the only defendant to enter an appearance in court.

The others remain in Russia, comfortably beyond the extradition power of the United States.

Now, the U.S. government is seeking to dismiss the charges against Concord Management and the related entity, Concord Catering, leaving in place the indictment against the other defendants.

The recent filing states that the charges against the two Concord entities must be dismissed for two reasons.

One is the conduct of Concord Management, which has waged an aggressive defense in court.

“Concord has demonstrated its intent to reap the benefits of the Court’s jurisdiction while positioning itself to evade any real obligations or responsibility,” the government wrote in its brief.

But prosecutors must always anticipate a vigorous defense when making charging decisions.

This alone seems like an insufficient reason to dismiss an indictment that has been returned by a grand jury.

The other reason provided in the motion to dismiss is concern that prosecution will compromise national security information.

The motion refers to “a change in the balance of the government’s proof due to a classification determination,” and includes a classified addendum that is not available to the public.

While protecting national security is a valid concern, asserting it at this stage of the prosecution seems suspect to anyone who has prosecuted a national security case before.

It is likely that Mueller’s team filed the charges without expecting any of the defendants to ever appear in court, an approach known as “Name and Shame,” intended more to expose wrongdoing than to hold defendants accountable through trial and conviction.

But federal prosecutors may not file charges unless they believe that they have sufficient evidence to obtain and sustain a conviction in open court, even if that day will most likely never come.

That decision requires a process known as a “prudential search,” in which prosecutors query intelligence agencies for any material that must be produced to the defense in discovery or might become public at trial.

The material is reviewed and vetted, and decisions are made at the highest levels of the U.S. Intelligence Community as to whether the prosecution outweighs any disclosures of intelligence information that will result from the prosecution.

As a former federal prosecutor, I have been forced to decline charges because of legitimate concerns that prosecution would expose national security sources and methods.

Sources are people who share information with the government, and whose identities are kept secret to ensure their ability to continue to collect intelligence and to protect their safety.

Methods are the techniques for collection of information, such as surveillance technologies or strategies that are unknown to our adversaries, and which must be protected to allow their continued utility.

In some instances, the cost of disclosing these sources or methods is just too great to justify the criminal prosecution of a wrongdoer.

Although I might have been unhappy when forced to forgo criminal charges, I never doubted the good faith of the intelligence officials who made the decision.

But the decision about these equities is always made at the front end, before a case is indicted, so that a defendant is not needlessly saddled with the burden of defending himself in court and so that the government does not have to turn tail and dismiss charges as the case proceeds.

This methodical and sensitive process is one that prosecutors take very seriously.

In this case, it is possible that the intelligence equities have changed since Mueller filed the charges in 2018.

Ordinarily, the Justice Department would receive the benefit of the doubt that it would dismiss charges only if it were truly unable to prosecute a case without damaging more important intelligence equities.

But Barr has lost that benefit.

Throughout his handling of the Mueller investigation, Barr undermined his own credibility through his conduct.

A federal judge has accused Barr of publicly spinning the Mueller Report in a way that was “distorted” and “misleading.”

Barr has referred to the FBI’s investigation of the drumphf campaign as “spying,” a loaded term that is not routinely used at DOJ.

In May, drumphf gave Barr unprecedented authority over all U.S. intelligence agencies to make all decisions relating to classified information as part of his review of the Mueller investigation.

Now that he is directing the dismissal of charges, his decisions can only be met with suspicion.


(https://i.imgur.com/k12HW1s.jpg)

Is he protecting drumphf from the disclosure of facts that will cause Americans to question the legitimacy of his election as president, which drumphf adviser Hope Hicks told Mueller’s investigators was drumphf’s “Achilles heel”?

As a federal prosecutor, I was always mindful that the credibility I enjoyed was earned not so much by me, but through the work of the DOJ lawyers across the country who came before me.


I understood that I shared the responsibility to protect the DOJ’s reputation for truthfulness.

As U.S. Attorney, I told every prosecutor I hired that no case was worth compromising the Department’s integrity.

By damaging his own credibility, Barr is inviting speculation that he is quietly dismantling the work of Mueller.

Barr has famously said that he is not concerned about his reputation because “everyone dies.”

He is entitled to hold nihilistic views about himself, but he has a higher duty to the department he leads.
















Would you Like To know More?
https://www.justsecurity.org/69266/barr-is-dismantling-charges-filed-by-mueller/ (https://www.justsecurity.org/69266/barr-is-dismantling-charges-filed-by-mueller/)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 17, 2020, 06:48:37 pm
Friday, 17th April 2o2o
It is self evident that the mediocrity principle is too overbearing for trunk

(https://i.imgur.com/R5dW2fb.jpg)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 19, 2020, 03:51:15 am
Sunday, 19th April 2o2o
Ex-mayor who quit after criticizing trunk mysteriously dies in plane crash
by Associated Press

(https://i.imgur.com/edOVrik.jpg)



(AUBURN, California) — The former mayor of a Northern California city who stepped down after he harshly criticized trunk and his ridiculous supporters died Saturday in a plane crash, the Sacramento Bee reported.

Dr. Bill Kirby, who was the mayor of Auburn, died in the crash Saturday morning near the Auburn Municipal Airport, officials told the Bee.

Kirby, a urologist, was the pilot of the plane that crashed shortly after 11 a.m., the newspaper reported.

A passenger in the plane suffered minor injuries and was transported to a hospital, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

The Bee reported that a Fakebook post from Sacramento political consultant Jeff Raimundo carried a statement from the Kirby family confirming he was the victim.

“Our family is devastated by this tragic news,” the statement by the family said.

“Bill devoted decades of enthusiastic and loving support to his family, his patients and the Auburn community he loved so much. We will miss him immensely but take comfort in knowing he died while flying – one of the other loves of his life.”

Kirby, 72, had been a licensed pilot since at least 2009, according to public records cited by the Bee.

Kirby gained notoriety last week after social media posts criticizing trunk’s response to the virus pandemic and comparing the trunk’s supporters to kkk members.

He told the Auburn Journal a week ago that his Fakebook posts were made on a personal page and that “this has nothing to do with my job. I reposted it.”

He added that he “absolutely” believes trunk is a racist.

Kirby’s posts and statements created an outcry and calls for his recall.

He announced during a City Council meeting Monday that he was stepping aside from his post as mayor and was expected to be succeeded by Councilman Daniel Berlant, the Bee reported.















Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/ex-mayor-who-quit-after-criticizing-trump-dies-in-crash/ar-BB12QKM1?li=BBnbfcL (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/ex-mayor-who-quit-after-criticizing-trump-dies-in-crash/ar-BB12QKM1?li=BBnbfcL)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on April 21, 2020, 06:12:47 pm
Tuesday, 21st April 2o2o
Senate Intel report confirms Russia aimed to help trunk in 2016
by MARTIN MATISHAK, ANDREW DESIDERIO and KYLE CHENEY



(https://i.imgur.com/paaGgYG.jpg)





The Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday reaffirmed its support for the U.S. intelligence community’s conclusion that the Russian government interfered in the 2016 presidential election with the goal of putting trunk in the Oval Office.

Tuesday's bipartisan report, from a panel chaired by North Carolina Republican Richard Burr, undercuts trunk's years of efforts to portray allegations of Kremlin assistance to his campaign as a "hoax," driven by Democrats and a “deep state” embedded within the government bureaucracy.

The intelligence community’s initial January 2017 assessment of Moscow’s influence campaign included “specific intelligence reporting to support the assessment that [Russian President Vladimir] Putin and the Russian government demonstrated a preference for candidate trunk,” the committee’s report says.

The panel also found “specific intelligence” to support the conclusion that Putin “approved and directed aspects” of the Kremlin’s interference efforts.

Senators and committee aides examined everything from the sources and methods used for the intelligence-gathering, to the Kremlin’s actions itself.

The 158-page report is heavily redacted, with dozens of pages blacked out entirely.

But its final conclusions were unambiguous.

“The committee found no reason to dispute the intelligence community’s conclusions,” Burr said in a statement, adding that the intelligence community’s conclusions reflect “strong tradecraft” and “sound analytical reasoning.”

Senator Mark Warner (D-Va.), the committee’s vice chairman, praised the intelligence agencies’ “unbiased and professional work,” and warned that there was “no reason to doubt that the Russians’ success in 2016 is leading them to try again in 2020.”

The panel's findings are in line with a previously issued bipartisan statement in which Senate Intelligence leaders endorsed the January 2017 assessment by the clandestine community.

The newest conclusions come in the fourth of five reports the committee is releasing on Moscow’s interference in the 2016 campaign.

The committee last month approved the report unanimously.

“The fact that you have a committee with members that range from John Cornyn and Tom Cotton to Dianne Feinstein and Ron Wyden coming to a unanimous conclusion that that report was correct and was soundly based, I think is very significant in light of the continuing questions about what did the Russians do and how did they do it,” Sen. Angus King (I-Maine), a member of the intelligence panel, said in an interview.

“This puts it to rest,” he added.

The report devotes “additional attention” to the disagreements among some intelligence agencies about the Russian government’s intentions in meddling in the 2016 campaign.

The report states that “the analytic disagreement was reasonable, transparent, and openly debated among the agencies and analysts.”

It also notes that the committee interviewed officials involved in drafting the January 2017 assessment, which came out days before trunk's inauguration, and states that they were not subject to political pressure.

The January 2017 assessment found that “Russia’s goals were to undermine public faith in the U.S. democratic process, denigrate Secretary [Hillary] Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency. We further assess Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect trunk. We have high confidence in these judgments.”

Notably, according to the Senate’s report, the initial assessment did not include information from or citations based on former British spy Christopher Steele’s unverified dossier of claims about trunk’s relationship with Russia.

It noted that the FBI’s senior leadership insisted, though, that the dossier be mentioned in an annex.

The Steele dossier is expected to be addressed in the committee’s fifth and final report.

King, who has read the unredacted version of the 158-page report, said the heavy redactions were not intended to shield the committee’s findings — rather, to protect the sources and methods of the U.S. intelligence community.

“It’s easy to look at something like that and say, ‘holy smokes, what are they hiding,’” King said.

“I can assure you that nothing’s being hidden except material that would be useful to our adversaries in terms of determining the nature and extent of our intelligence capability.”

Beyond its possible political impact, the report represents a confidence-booster to the country’s intelligence community at a time of great uncertainty.

trunk has openly criticized the intelligence community’s work, both as a presidential candidate and as commander in chief.

His fury has only intensified since its inspector general alerted Congress last year of a whistleblower complaint regarding the president’s posture toward Ukraine, a process that resulted in his impeachment.

The acting-president is still rejecting intelligence officials' more recent warnings — delivered to lawmakers last month — that Russia is interfering in this year's election and that Moscow has a preference for trunk.

In February, the president replaced acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire with U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell, who previously had not served in any U.S. intelligence agency.

The change set off more personnel moves that prompted fears among career clandestine officials of a widespread loyalty purge — a suspicion that was heightened earlier this month when trunk fired Michael Atkinson, the intelligence community’s inspector general, who had first alerted the congressional intelligence committees about the whistleblower complaint.

The latest report from the Senate panel is an open rebuke to the House GOP’s report issued in early 2018, which faulted the intelligence community's assertion that Putin had developed a preference for a trunk victory in 2016.

Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee said at the time that this conclusion was the result of “significant intelligence tradecraft failings that undermine confidence in the [assessment’s] judgments regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin's strategic objectives for disrupting the U.S. election.”

But Burr immediately spiked this conclusion, broadly hailing the intelligence community's tradecraft.

The new report, too, dismisses the suggestion that the Putin findings were flawed.

“The committee found that reporting from multiple intelligence disciplines was used as evidence to support this analytic line, and that the analytic tradecraft was transparent,” according to the findings.

The Senate panel’s fifth and final installment in its exhaustive review of the 2016 interference is in the “editing stages,” a committee spokesperson said.

The final product is expected to be around 950 pages long, according to sources familiar with the matter.

That report will focus on the counterintelligence aspects of the government’s Russia investigation, including allegations that trunk campaign officials coordinated with Russian operatives.

Former special counsel Robert Mueller said last year that his probe “did not establish” such coordination.

The exact timing of the final release remains in flux with committee aides largely working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The panel’s work is almost exclusively conducted in a sensitive classified facility on Capitol Hill.















Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.politico.com/news/2020/04/21/senate-intel-report-confirms-russia-aimed-to-help-trump-in-2016-198171 (https://www.politico.com/news/2020/04/21/senate-intel-report-confirms-russia-aimed-to-help-trump-in-2016-198171)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 22, 2020, 11:51:06 am
Friday, 22nd May 2o2o
Appeals court orders judge to respond to Flynn's emergency bid to dismiss charges
by Harper Neidig

(https://i.imgur.com/OMH32HF.jpg)



The comments section contain the finer arguments of this case:



Substantive enlightener  Kevin failoni • 2 hours ago

You are a political hack whose legal acumen and acuity is suspect (at best)!

YOU EXUDE THE PROBLEM WITH TRUMP'S BASE OF FOOLS.

All of you, like trump, fox and talk radio HAVE PREMISES BAKED INTO YOUR LITANY OF FALSE CONCLUSIONS THAT ARE *NOT BASED IN TRUTH.

You people do not engage and speak with liberals, democrats, muslims, gays and immigrants but you are always misrepesnting their opinions and ideas...WHICH LEADS TO YOU BEING HABITUALLY WRONG, STUPID AND INDIGNANT.


1. The prosecution didn't "drop the case." The disgraced doj, via lawless billy barr, prosecuted disgraced flynn. Their work was completed.

2. The defendant admitted guilt TWICE under oath and WAIVED ALL RIGHTS TO CONTEST THE CHARGES WHEN HE ADMITTED IN OPEN COURT THE BASIS OF HIS CRIME ("stipulation of facts"). (We shouldn't have prosecuted is laughable.)

3. The court (not DOJ) has jurisdiction to hear the case and to pronounce sentence. The dojs work is complete!

4. The 302 is NOT relevant to the crime charged. FLYNN IS A LAIR AND THERE IS NO WAY TO DISPROVE HIS FELONIOUS (FALSE) STATEMENT (LIE) TO THE FBI. There is no exculpatory evidence under these facts and Flynn was not entrapped.

5. The goverment did not spy on flynn...they spied on kysliak!

FLYNN CHOSE TO LIE to protect trump/flynn and he pleaded guilty to protect his son after the squeeze. THIS IS THE WAY THE FBI PURSUES CRIMINALS...(I would have no risk if the fbi threatened me about my 1st grader at catholic school. The point is that his son had criminal liabilities. BALANCE YOUR PARTISANSHIP AND BIAS WITH YOUR SUPPORT OF POLITICALLY BASED SUBPOENAS FOR HUNTER BIDEN 🤔.).

6. FINALLY...THE COURT HAS THE DISCRETION TO DISMISS OR NOT...the late stages of the proceedings (2 years later, after a guilty plea, cooperation with Mueller...then BEING A MOLE FOR TRUMP and reporting back to his defense team) do not give the doj the right to withdraw and dismiss. THE COURT BELONGS TO THE PEOPLE AND NOT TO TRUMP AND HIS "UNJUST" LACKEYS.

GBA 🇺🇸



Morton Watts  Cathy • 19 hours ago
Have you seen trunk in a debate?

He can't debate, make a point, or finish a sentence.

It is mostly "I know you are but what am I."




thefinestcheese  Cathy • 19 hours ago
"No puppet. No puppet. You're the puppet"



Samsays  Cathy • 19 hours ago
This how conservatives act when they know their beloved Republican part elite and establishment in Washington are losing and failing ... again.


Jean Grey  Cathy • 19 hours ago
trump can't read, trips over basic words, and uses his finger to help him follow text.

When he's speaking off script, he's largely incoherent.

The examples of this are myriad.



SuperSpreader trunk!  JimDandy • 19 hours ago

Flynn plead guilty.

Twice.

He was trying to avoid more serious charges - Flynn was working as a secret agent for Turkey while serving as an NSA.

Why do you want traitors and liars in National Security?



SaneAmericaVersusTrump • 19 hours ago
Flynn's lawyers asked the Appeals Court to order Sullivan to grant the DOJ's motion and asked the Appeals Court to remove Sullivan.

They got neither lol.



Nu Mil 3 Design  SaneAmericaVersusTrump • 14 hours ago
Trump fired Mike Flynn for lying to VP Pence.

Mike Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about a material fact:

he lied about his contacts with the Russian Ambassador to the US, Sergey Kislyak, a known Russian spymaster at a time when the US had already known about Russian interference in the 2016 US election.

The only thing left in the case should be the sentencing of Flynn for his self confessed crime.




409-k • 20 hours ago
Innocent men don't plead guilty twice ! Especially if there white !


Smocking Hot Hamberders  stokr • 18 hours ago
And?

You should always have a lawyer when being questioned, it's the most basic of common knowledge.

The fact that he wasn't that smart proves he never should've been in politics.



Substantive enlightener  stokr • 19 hours ago
You have no idea what you are talking about like most trump supporters.

GFY...I WROTE THIS POST FOR YOU...keep reading my post and ENJOY "MAGA" and "WINNING."

You destroyed America you traitor... not democrats, liberals, gays, muslims and immigrants.

ALL OF YOU DHEADS ARE FROM THE FAKE NEWS SITES LISTED in my "this is why i am blocking you" post...

Dear DUMB TROLL...MY COMMON RESPONSE WAS CRAFTED FOR AN INDIGNANT IDEALOUGE JUST LIKE YOU.

ENJOY the silence TRUMP cult worshipper, I will.

Im blocking you...see 1-4.

And before you complain to me, please don't.

1. 50%+ of the people i block are trolls. They do not like *my opinion and attack me and send barbs. Im not going to engage in name calling. IT makes me sound like a jerk when i defend myself and CORRECT ALL OF their MISSTATEMENTS, MISCHATACTERZATION AND LIES!

2. There are the truth deniers spewing hannity, fox, alex jones, GP, newsmax, daily caller/wire/signal, Breitbart, Washington times, newsmax, and oann talking points spun out of whole cloth and spewed by trump and the wh.

3. The deflectors and whataboutism cultists. They go back in time (decades even, when "southern" Democrats were slave owners pre 1964) to find a point of comparison in a sickening and *unpersuasive attempt to deflect from trump's abysmal failure(s), incompetence, lapses in judgment, recklessness, OR LIE(S) that are the topic of the day (examples: hillary, obama, fisa warrants, you can keep your doctor, emails, bengahzi, pallets of cash, tarmac, baby killers, dems hate America, commies, aoc, Deep state, socialism, seth rich, nothing burgers, russia russia russia, SOROS BOTS, freebies and goodies, elites, lamestream media, clinton news network, pizzagate, uranium one, drive by media, spying, fbi, comey/clapper/page/strozk, etc.) YOU KNOW ALL OF THESE TOPICS and they have mostly been dismantled, but for right wing circles and kook websites (YOUR SAFE ❄ PLACES).


4. There are also the FINGERS IN THE EARS, minds closed, TOUNGES OUT..."trump is the greatest president ever" SYCHOPHANTS. THEY are the MOST tiresome and boorish. Like i heard in college..."people that know the sun will rise in the east are not the loudest and most vociferous...it is those with DOUBT (and little faith) that are the loudest."

IM a seasoned attorney.

I can end a bs line of argument with a judge.

But here, i can only "block" to avoid frustrating myself by trying to reason with someone that is not reasonble, incapable or unwilling to accept BASIC FACTS (you).

This ☝️ is who you people are.

Im not going to feed you troll.

Take your outrage and misdirected anger back to Breitbart and daily caller.

Unceremoniously Blocked and tossed into the basket of DISPICABLE, deranged, delusional, detestable, disgusting, deplorables and dregs.

Btw, TRUMP HAS ALREADY DECIMATED THE US ECONOMY. The guy that bankrupted a casino...you fools brought the plague of trump upon us....curses upon all of your houses!
GBA 🇺🇸




Substantive enlightener  Feisty Hayseed • 3 hours ago • edited
Do you enjoy talking with yourself?

I can articulate and defend my own positions, reasoning and legal arguments.

YOU EXUDE THE PROBLEM WITH TRUMP'S BASE OF FOOLS. All of you, like trump, fox and talk radio HAVE PREMISES BAKED INTO YOUR LITANY OF FALSE CONCLUSIONS THAT ARE *NOT BASED IN TRUTH.

You people do not engage and speak with liberals, democrats, muslims, gays and immigrants but you are always misrepesnting their opinions and ideas...WHICH LEADS TO YOU BEING HABITUALLY WRONG, STUPID AND INDIGNANT.


1. The prosecution didn't "drop the case." The disgraced doj, via lawless billy barr, prosecuted disgraced flynn. Their work was completed.

2. The defendant admitted guilt TWICE under oath and WAIVED ALL RIGHTS TO CONTEST THE CHARGES WHEN HE ADMITTED IN OPEN COURT THE BASIS OF HIS CRIME ("stipulation of facts"). (We shouldn't have prosecuted is laughable.)

3. The court (not DOJ) has jurisdiction to hear the case and to pronounce sentence. The dojs work is complete!

4. The 302 is NOT relevant to the crime charged. FLYNN IS A LAIR AND THERE IS NO WAY TO DISPROVE HIS FELONIOUS (FALSE) STATEMENT (LIE) TO THE FBI. There is no exculpatory evidence under these facts and Flynn was not entrapped.

5. The goverment did not spy on flynn...they spied on kysliak!
FLYNN CHOSE TO LIE to protect trump/flynn and he pleaded guilty to protect his son after the squeeze. THIS IS THE WAY THE FBI PURSUES CRIMINALS...(I would have no risk if the fbi threatened me about my 1st grader at catholic school. The point is that his son had criminal liabilities. BALANCE YOUR PARTISANSHIP AND BIAS WITH YOUR SUPPORT OF POLITICALLY BASED SUBPOENAS FOR HUNTER BIDEN 🤔.).

6. FINALLY...THE COURT HAS THE DISCRETION TO DISMISS OR NOT...the late stages of the proceedings (2 years later, after a guilty plea, cooperation with Mueller...then BEING A MOLE FOR TRUMP and reporting back to his defense team) do not give the doj the right to withdraw and dismiss. THE COURT BELONGS TO THE PEOPLE AND NOT TO TRUMP AND HIS "UNJUST" LACKEYS.

GBA 🇺🇸



Hot Rats  stokr • 20 hours ago
Trumpers are the stupidest and most gullible people in the world.


Michael Walsh  stokr • 17 hours ago
There can be no pardon after dismissal.

Once the guilty party has been charged or convicted they remain guilty except there are no jail time.


Substantive enlightener  stokr • 19 hours ago
No...the term is "entrapment" and you should look it up...Flynn's lies were knowingly and voluntary.

GBA 🇺🇸



stokr  Smocking Hot Hamberders • 15 hours ago
They destroyed him, over nothing, and threatened to do the same to his son.

Pretty simple stuff, for most.


Smocking Hot Hamberders  stokr • 11 hours ago
How did they destroy him? All he had to do was not lie.


409-k  stokr • 20 hours ago
Bullsh*tt



Substantive enlightener  stokr • 19 hours ago
The fbi...you love them when they threaten Black drug dealer's families for money laundering and conspiracy.
GBA 🇺🇸


Daxis • 20 hours ago
The judge should charge Flynn with perjury & send him to prison immediately.


jackinec  Daxis • 19 hours ago
Yeah, this is a "careful what you wish for" moment for Flynn and Trump.

If Sullivan dismisses the charges without prejudice, he'll face charges again when the next Administration takes over.

If Sullivan doesn't dismiss the charges and Trump pardons him, Flynn's previous statements to the FBI may be used in other criminal trials, including against Flynn's own son.

And Flynn would be compelled to testify in any trial, given he doesn't face any consequences by his honest testimony.


Tim Berland  RT • 15 hours ago
The prosecution phase of the trial is over.

There is a verdict, and they are now in the sentencing phase.

At this point, the judge is in complete control of the trial.




Daxis  RT • 19 hours ago
Flynn already pleaded guilty. Twice.



wrayven  Daxis • 19 hours ago
What the magabillies seem to forget is Flynn's deal was originally a no prison time deal.

It was Sullivan who was disgusted by Flynn's lack of cooperation.

He should have just sentenced Flynn right then & there a couple of years ago.










Would You Like To Know More?
https://thehill.com/regulation/499044-appeals-court-orders-judge-to-respond-to-flynns-emergency-bid-to-dismiss-charges#bottom-story-socials
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 27, 2020, 09:30:57 am
Wednesday, 27th May 2o2o

Is this yet another diversion created by the 'grand old pandemic' trying to protect the unqualified game show host pretending to be an American president?

(https://i.imgur.com/9EMiz8Z.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/NrNMsUD.jpg)

Who Is Carol Gombell?
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on May 28, 2020, 08:43:13 pm
Thursday, 28th May 2o2o
Roger Stone ordered to report to prison by June 30th
by Katelyn Polantz

(https://i.imgur.com/i4ubB04.jpg)


 

Longtime trunk friend and political adviser Roger Stone must report to prison by June 30th, the Bureau of Prisons said on Thursday.

Stone has said in court filings that he plans to challenge that reporting date as he appeals his conviction -- though it's not clear how successful that may be.

An attorney for Stone declined to comment on Thursday.

The Republican provocateur posted about the date on his Instagram account, adding the messages "#deathsentence" and "#freerogerstone."

He wrote he would not be quarantined for COVID-19 when he reports to prison.

Stone is designated to be inmate #19579-104 after a federal judge sentenced him to 40 months in prison for lying to Congress and witness intimidation.

A jury had found him guilty last year in a case that proved he had lied to protect trunk when the then-Republican-led House of Representatives inquired about the 2016 campaign's efforts to reach WikiLeaks.

Stone has been living at his home in Florida since his arrest in early 2019, the last criminal case brought in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

In addition to challenging his jury trial, Stone has openly sought a pardon from trunk in recent weeks.

Other convicted federal prisoners whom trunk personally worked with in 2016, including former campaign chair paul manafort and trunk's estranged lawyer Michael Cohen, are out of prison serving their sentences at home because of the virus, while the Justice Department, now led by Attorney General William Barr, has dialed back its severity toward Mueller cases, including parts of Stone's.

It's not yet known what prison Stone may have to report to.

"For safety and security reasons, we don't share an inmate's designated institution until after they have arrived," Bureau of Prisons spokeswoman Sue Allison said.











Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/roger-stone-ordered-to-report-to-prison-by-june-30/ar-BB14JJMn?ocid=spartanntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/roger-stone-ordered-to-report-to-prison-by-june-30/ar-BB14JJMn?ocid=spartanntp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 09, 2020, 07:54:27 am
Thursday, 9th July 2o2o
Supreme Court rules Individual-1 MUST HAND OVER TAX RETURNS TO INVESTIGATORS
by Charles Duncan

(https://i.imgur.com/1AG1MV3.jpg)




Individual-1 will be required to hand over his tax returns to New York investigators, the Supreme Court ruled Thursday.

In the final day of the session, the Supreme Court released its long-awaited decision on two cases over Individual-1’s financial information.

The first case determined whether the U.S. House of Representatives can review Individual-1’s financial and banking records.

The second case is whether New York investigators can subpoena a sitting president’s tax returns.

The court ruled Individual-1 must turn over his tax returns in the New York investigation but sent the case back to a lower court.

Individual-1 argued that he is immune from any criminal investigations while in office.

House Democrats want to see the president’s financial records as part of an investigation into whether Individual-1 paid hush money to porn star Stormy Daniels.

They are also looking into whether Individual-1 lied about the value of assets to reduce his taxes and get loans.

A ruling on that case is also expected Thursday.

The subpoena in the New York criminal case is also related to possible hush-money payments to the porn actress who said she had an affair with Individual-1.

Individual-1’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, pleaded guilty to lying to Congress and other charges related to the hush-money investigation.

Even with the ruling against Individual-1 in the New York case, much of the material may not become public, the Associated Press reports.


(https://i.imgur.com/JFWY8K7.jpg)

The tax returns in the New York case will grand jury with strict confidentiality rules.

The records the House committees want contain sensitive information about Individual-1, his family and businesses, the AP reports.








Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics-government/article244088567.html?utm_medium=push_alert&utm_source=pushly&intcid=%7B%7D (https://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics-government/article244088567.html?utm_medium=push_alert&utm_source=pushly&intcid=%7B%7D)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 09, 2020, 02:47:28 pm
Thursday, 9th July 2o2o
REMANDED!
by David Caplan

(https://i.imgur.com/cKdvwxZ.jpg)





(Manhattan, NEW YORK) - Individual-1's former lawyer Michael Cohen has been remanded back into the custody of federal authorities and will be sent back to jail, his lawyer Jeffrey Levine announced Thursday afternoon.

(https://i.imgur.com/hizDLS5.jpg)

Cohen was taken to the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, NBC News reported.

This comes after he was spotted dining with his wife and another couple last week at the Upper East Side restaurant Le Bilboquet -- Levine said on Thursday his detention may be connected to this outing, which was documented by the New York Post, which posted photos of the night out.

But Levine, defended Cohen’s night out at the time, telling the New York Post, he “is currently on furlough” and that he “did not violate any of the terms and conditions of his release … and any assertion or suggestion to the contrary would be wholly inaccurate and untrue."

Cohen was released from an upstate New York jail because of Covid-19, and was allowed to serve out the rest of his three-year sentence at his Manhattan home.













Would You Like To Know More?
https://1010wins.radio.com/articles/michael-cohen-taken-into-custody-heading-back-to-jail
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 12, 2020, 01:54:47 am
Sunday, 12th July 2o2o
Stone Remains A Convicted Felon
by Robert Mueller

(https://i.imgur.com/KQSTgJj.jpg)






The work of the special counsel’s office — its report, indictments, guilty pleas and convictions — should speak for itself.

But I feel compelled to respond both to broad claims that our investigation was illegitimate and our motives were improper, and to specific claims that Roger Stone was a victim of our office.

The Russia investigation was of paramount importance.

Stone was prosecuted and convicted because he committed federal crimes.


He remains a convicted felon, and rightly so.

Russia’s actions were a threat to America’s democracy.

It was critical that they be investigated and understood.

By late 2016, the FBI had evidence that the Russians had signaled to a trunk campaign adviser that they could assist the campaign through the anonymous release of information damaging to the Democratic candidate.

And the FBI knew that the Russians had done just that:

Beginning in July 2016, WikiLeaks released emails stolen by Russian military intelligence officers from the Clinton campaign.

Other online personas using false names — fronts for Russian military intelligence — also released Clinton campaign emails.

Following FBI Director James B. Comey’s termination in May 2017, the acting attorney general named me as special counsel and directed the special counsel’s office to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

The order specified lines of investigation for us to pursue, including any links or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the trunk campaign.

One of our cases involved Stone, an official on the campaign until mid-2015 and a supporter of the campaign throughout 2016.

Stone became a central figure in our investigation for two key reasons:

He communicated in 2016 with individuals known to us to be Russian intelligence officers, and he claimed advance knowledge of WikiLeaks’ release of emails stolen by those Russian intelligence officers.

In 2019, The Post's editorial board argued the president tried to manipulate the justice system, wrongdoing that Congress must not let go.

We now have a detailed picture of Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election.

The special counsel’s office identified two principal operations directed at our election:

hacking and dumping Clinton campaign emails, and an online social media campaign to disparage the Democratic candidate.

We also identified numerous links between the Russian government and trunk campaign personnel — Stone among them.

We did not establish that members of the trunk campaign conspired with the Russian government in its activities.

The investigation did, however, establish that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a trunk presidency and worked to secure that outcome.

It also established that the campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts.

Uncovering and tracing Russian outreach and interference activities was a complex task.

The investigation to understand these activities took two years and substantial effort.

Based on our work, eight individuals pleaded guilty or were convicted at trial, and more than two dozen Russian individuals and entities, including senior Russian intelligence officers, were charged with federal crimes.

Congress also investigated and sought information from Stone.

A jury later determined he lied repeatedly to members of Congress.

He lied about the identity of his intermediary to WikiLeaks.

He lied about the existence of written communications with his intermediary.

He lied by denying he had communicated with the trunk campaign about the timing of WikiLeaks’ releases.

He in fact updated senior campaign officials repeatedly about WikiLeaks.

And he tampered with a witness, imploring him to stonewall Congress.

The jury ultimately convicted Stone of obstruction of a congressional investigation, five counts of making false statements to Congress and tampering with a witness.

Because his sentence has been commuted, he will not go to prison.

But his conviction stands.

Russian efforts to interfere in our political system, and the essential question of whether those efforts involved the trunk campaign, required investigation.

In that investigation, it was critical for us (and, before us, the FBI) to obtain full and accurate information.

Likewise, it was critical for Congress to obtain accurate information from its witnesses.

When a subject lies to investigators, it strikes at the core of the government’s efforts to find the truth and hold wrongdoers accountable.

It may ultimately impede those efforts.

We made every decision in Stone’s case, as in all our cases, based solely on the facts and the law and in accordance with the rule of law.

The women and men who conducted these investigations and prosecutions acted with the highest integrity.

Claims to the contrary are false.
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 13, 2020, 01:10:47 pm
Monday, 13th July 2o2o
Judge Amy Berman Jackson Demands Clarification on Roger Stone Commutation, Wants a Copy of Individual-1 Order
by Colin Kalmbacher

(https://i.imgur.com/El2dkZT.jpg)



A federal judge on Monday issued an eyebrow-raising order related to the legal fate of Individual-1’s longtime confidant and former political adviser Roger Stone.

U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, in a minute order, asked for clarification as to the exact scope of the controversial commutation handed out by Individual-1 last Friday night.

“[T]he parties are ORDERED to provide the [D.C. District] Court by July 14th, 2020 with a copy of the Executive Order commuting the defendant’s sentence and to address the question of the scope of the commutation, in particular, whether it involves the sentence of incarceration alone or also the period of supervised release,” Jackson wrote in the brief but potentially important directive.

“I was wondering about this this morning,” University of Alabama Law Professor and former federal prosecutor Joyce White Vance wrote in response to the order.

“Theoretically, even with commutation, if Stone violates the terms of his supervised release, the judge could be able to consider revoking it [and] return him to custody. An interesting possible implication of this being commutation, not pardon.”

Individual-1 ignited a whirlwind of media criticism after commuting Stone’s 40-month prison sentence with a blistering and vituperative statement that was more syntactically akin to a recent vintage tweetstorm than a commutation decree.

The Executive Mansion said Stone was pursued as part of an “absolutely baseless investigation,” that Stone was “a victim of the Russia Hoax that the Left and its allies in the media” perpetuated, and ragged on a juror in the case who the Executive Mansion called “a member of the so-called liberal ‘resistance’ to the Individual-1.”

It also complained of the so-called “process-based charges” (rather than substantive charges) leveled at Stone:

Mr. Stone was charged by the same prosecutors from the Mueller Investigation tasked with finding evidence of collusion with Russia.


Because no such evidence exists, however, they could not charge him for any collusion-related crime.

Instead, they charged him for his conduct during their investigation.

The statement contained no clear particulars for Judge Jackson to follow.

By issuing Monday’s order, the court is essentially asking the U.S. Department of Justice whether or not a 24-month probation term still applies to Stone’s sentence in lieu of the commuted prison term.

Individual-1’s statement, which largely casts Stone as collateral damage in a partisan war against the Executive Mansion itself, seemingly left such details unclear to the relevant authorities charged with Stone’s release and potentially continued criminal justice system supervision.

Jackson noted that her order was issued “n response to questions raised by the U.S. Probation Office.”

Stone was convicted on seven felony counts of lying to Congress, witness tampering, and obstruction of justice in late 2019.

Since then, his defense team and his support network have lodged several efforts for an appeal and clemency–including a direct plea to Individual-1.

(https://i.imgur.com/ZdjX3c7.jpg)

“Save my life!” Stone asked his friend Individual-1 by way of the media just three days before the commutation was issued–arguing that the mismanaged federal prison system’s decidedly poor response to the pandemic was tantamount to a death sentence if the 67-year-old were to actually be incarcerated alongside other inmates in a typically decrepit federal lockup.

Individual-1, of course, responded, but not with enough clarity for the judge who has long overseen Stone’s case.

Legal writer Cristian Farias offered a tongue-in-cheek appraisal of the maybe penultimate drama in the Roger Stone saga:

This is something I might have done back when I was a probation officer:

“Excuse me, your honor, your judgment of conviction says he’s gotta report. I don’t see anything in his file that that has changed.”

Many others voiced concerns–and entertained a certain level of schadenfreude–that Individual-1 had somehow bungled the paperwork but any deficiencies in the initial statement would likely be easily amended by way of an additional executive order.

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia’s search for clarity here may, in fact, prompt the Executive Mansion to draft a more precise order that would keep Stone off the government’s register altogether.

















Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/judge-amy-berman-jackson-demands-clarification-on-roger-stone-commutation-wants-a-copy-of-trump-order/ar-BB16GIJY?ocid=msedgntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/judge-amy-berman-jackson-demands-clarification-on-roger-stone-commutation-wants-a-copy-of-trump-order/ar-BB16GIJY?ocid=msedgntp)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 16, 2020, 09:14:12 am
July 15, 2020



1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, D.C. 20500



Your Commutation of Roger Stone’s Sentence

Dear Individual-1:

You have by now heard from many quarters the widespread condemnation of your action in commuting the 40-month sentence imposed on your close associate Roger Stone by the United States District Court in Washington, D.C., following Mr. Stone’s conviction on seven counts for lying to investigators and witness tampering.

The New York City Bar Association joins in that condemnation because your action in this matter undermines the rule of law that the Presidential oath requires you to uphold.

The commutation of Mr. Stone’s sentence appears to have completely bypassed the established procedure for Justice Department review and recommendations for such Presidential actions.

That this irregular process was followed to afford dispensation to a close personal associate of yours is itself a cause of concern.

However, when, as appears to be the case here, a President uses the pardon power to reward an associate for declining to provide a duly authorized federal prosecutor with relevant information about the President’s own actions, the effects on our nation’s Constitutional system – and our society’s commitment to live according to law – are profound.

Where, as here, the pardon power is wielded in tandem with the Attorney General’s overruling of career prosecutors to urge an unusually lenient sentence for Mr. Stone and follows the President’s own public attacks on the federal judge presiding over the prosecution, the cumulative effect of these actions amounts to a Presidential claim to be beyond the reach of the law that your oath requires you to uphold.


This is the very claim that the Supreme Court has repeatedly rejected throughout our nation’s history and decisively rejected once again this past week in Trump v. Vance.

There is an additional element to the Stone pardon that raises serious concerns.

First, juries give an oath to do justice and do not pledge an oath to the President or Presidency.


Their role is apolitical.

Yet, in the Executive Mansion statement granting Mr. Stone’s clemency, you personally attacked the jury forewoman for “conceal[ing]” her alleged “‘resistance’ to the trump presidency.”

Second, you had previously singled out and attacked the same juror following Mr. Stone’s conviction by a unanimous jury, even though Judge Amy Berman Jackson specifically considered and rejected the defendant’s claim of misconduct by one or more jurors.

It is one thing for a President to disagree with political opponents, other public figures, or even with court rulings, but it is not acceptable for the President of the United States to single out an identifiable private individual who is fulfilling her good faith obligation to serve as a juror.

Jurors perform that function, often at considerable inconvenience and expense, because it is a part of their responsibility as citizens.

To aim the power of the Presidency at them with public scorn and derision is an insult to the untold number of citizens who willingly participate each year in our judicial system and expect it to work in the manner contemplated by our Constitution.

It also adversely affects the administration of justice because it threatens to undermine the confidence the public should have in the justice system and the purposes for which it was created.

Jurors should be able to assume and perform their duty in a conscientious manner free of outside influence and personal criticism from their nation’s President.

We call upon you to cease such efforts to intimidate or excoriate your fellow citizens in ways that are merely self-beneficial and suggest that you – and your close allies – are above the law.

Respectfully,

Sheila S. Boston
President

Stephen L. Kass
Chair, Task Force on the Rule of Law


Christopher M. W. Pioch
Jessenia Vazcones-Yagual
Co-Chairs, Task Force for the Independence of Lawyers and Judges
[/color]




Would You Like To Know More?
https://s3.amazonaws.com/documents.nycbar.org/files/2020754-Stone_letter_Final.pdf (https://s3.amazonaws.com/documents.nycbar.org/files/2020754-Stone_letter_Final.pdf)

https://www.nycbar.org/member-and-career-services/committees/reports-listing/reports/detail/commutation-of-roger-stones-sentence-letter-to-president-trump (https://www.nycbar.org/member-and-career-services/committees/reports-listing/reports/detail/commutation-of-roger-stones-sentence-letter-to-president-trump)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 19, 2020, 03:41:39 am
Sunday, 19th July 2o2o
Roger Stone calls Black radio host a racial slur
by Dennis Romero

(https://i.imgur.com/PAoSuIQ.jpg)





Roger Stone, friend and former campaign adviser to individual-1, called a Black radio host a racial slur on air Saturday while the two debated Stone's federal conviction.

On Saturday night, Stone was grilled by radio host Morris W. O’Kelly on "the Mr. Mo'Kelly Show" on KFI AM 640 in Los Angeles.

The phone interview was broadcast and streamed.

Stone claimed his conviction last year was the result of bias against himself and individual-1.

"It was a jury of my political opponents," Stone said.

O'Kelly pushed back and challenged the idea that Stone did not get a fair trial or that the evidence did not clearly show his transgressions.

The host also suggested that not only was Stone not a victim of biased justice, but that he likely benefitted from knowing individual-1.

"There are thousands of people treated unfairly daily," O'Kelly said.

"Hell, your number just happened to come up in the lottery. I'm guessing it was more than just luck, Roger, right?"

Stone was silent, then it sounded like he was either away from the phone or covering it up when he said,















Would You Like To Know More?
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/roger-stone-calls-black-radio-host-a-racial-slur/ar-BB16UVow?ocid=msedgntp (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/roger-stone-calls-black-radio-host-a-racial-slur/ar-BB16UVow?ocid=msedgntp)

Would You Like To Hear More?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDC0GhdfgSo (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDC0GhdfgSo)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on July 20, 2020, 07:32:32 am
Monday, 20th July 2o2o
Everything We Know About the Shooting at a Federal Judge’s Home in New Jersey
by Matt Stieb

(https://i.imgur.com/VKLk487.jpg)






On Sunday, a gunman killed the 20-year-old son of Judge Esther Salas in her home in North Brunswick, New Jersey.

Salas’s husband was also shot and injured, and while the U.S. district judge for the District of New Jersey was home at the time, she was uninjured.

Below is everything we know about the shooting, which is being investigated by U.S. Marshals and the FBI.

The shooting in North Brunswick

On Sunday around 5 p.m., investigators state that a person dressed as a FedEx driver arrived at the home, shooting Salas’s son, Daniel Anderl, when he opened the door.

“He was shot through the heart,” North Brunswick Mayor Francis Womack, a friend of the family, told ABC News.


Salas’s husband, Mark Anderl, was also shot multiple times.

Mayor Womack told ABC that Salas was in the home during the shooting but was in a different part of the house; the Associated Press reports that Salas was in her home’s basement.

The victims

Salas’s husband, 63-year-old Mark Anderl, is a criminal-trial attorney and a partner in a law firm specializing in state and criminal defense.

Prior to going into private practice, he was an assistant prosecutor in Essex County.

Anderl underwent surgery and is in stable condition, according to Womack.

Salas’s son, Mark Anderl, was a freshman at Catholic University in Washington, D.C.

The suspect

The FBI has alerted the public that its agents are looking for “one subject” who is still at large.

As CNN reports, it is still unclear if the gunman was a FedEx employee or someone posing as a delivery driver to allow for easy access to Salas’s home.


The U.S. Marshals Service, which protects federal judges, is also investigating.

A law enforcement official told ABC News that Salas had faced threats in the past.

“As a judge, she had threats from time to time, but everyone is saying that recently there had not been any,” said Womack, who is a friend of Salas and her husband.

Who is Judge Salas?

Salas, the first Latina to serve on the federal bench in New Jersey, was nominated by President Obama to the U.S. District Court in 2010 after serving earlier in her career as a magistrate judge and an assistant federal public defender.

In 2014, she sentenced a husband and wife from The Real Housewives of New Jersey to 41 months and 15 months, respectively, for bankruptcy fraud and tax evasion.

She is currently overseeing a case in which investors have sued Deutsche Bank for allegedly making misleading statements about its failure to monitor money-laundering operations and “high-risk” clients like Jeffrey Epstein.

Authorities have not linked the shooting to the Deutsche Bank case.

(https://i.imgur.com/XOuNwSC.jpg)


**The Comments Section**

fredraynerjr

I know it looked like a delivery but nobody should be able to walk up to a judges home without being checked out.



xtopher1974

Planned attack. A hit. Check the DB case and ties to the Russian mob. Not the first suspicious death related to those interrelated cares. Epstein and whatever laundering and arms dealing he was involved in.



randallsmithcpa

Sounds like a planned attack for unknown reasons.  Judges' families usually don't just open the door to a stranger with all the anti-government rhetoric now.  Former Arizona senator Jeff Flake has received numerous threats on his life and his wife and children, usually from right wing people.














Would You Like To Know More?
https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/07/shooting-at-judge-esther-salass-nj-home-what-we-know.html
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on August 01, 2020, 11:01:01 am
Saturday, 1st August
How Far-Right Police Officers and Ex-Soldiers Planned for ‘Day X’
by Katrin Bennhold








(GÜSTROW, Germany) — The plan sounded frighteningly concrete.

The group would round up political enemies and those defending migrants and refugees, put them on trucks and drive them to a secret location.

Then they would kill them.

One member had already bought 30 body bags.

More body bags were on an order list, investigators say, along with quicklime, used to decompose organic material.

On the surface, those discussing the plan seemed reputable.

One was a lawyer and local politician, but with a special hatred of immigrants.


Two were active army reservists.

Two others were police officers, including Marko Gross, a police sniper and former parachutist who acted as their unofficial leader.

The group grew out of a nationwide chat network for soldiers and others with far-right sympathies set up by a member of Germany’s elite special forces, the KSK.

Over time, under Mr. Gross’s supervision, they formed a parallel group of their own.

Members included a doctor, an engineer, a decorator, a gym owner, even a local fisherman.

(https://i.imgur.com/sZuZK5F.png)

They called themselves Nordkreuz, or Northern Cross.

“Between us, we were a whole village,” recalled Mr. Gross, one of several Nordkreuz members who described to me in various interviews this year how the group came together and began making plans.

They denied they had plotted to kill anyone. But investigators and prosecutors, as well an account one member gave to the police — transcripts of which were seen by The New York Times — indicate their planning took a more sinister turn.

Germany has belatedly begun dealing with far-right networks that officials now say are far more extensive than they ever understood.

The reach of far-right extremists into its armed forces is particularly alarming in a country that has worked to cleanse itself of its Nazi past and the horrors of the Holocaust.

In July the government disbanded an entire company infiltrated by extremists in the nation’s special forces.

But the Nordkreuz case, which only recently came to trial after being uncovered more than three years ago, shows that the problem of far-right infiltration is neither new nor confined to to the KSK, or even the military.

Far-right extremism penetrated multiple layers of German society in the years when the authorities underestimated the threat or were reluctant to countenance it fully, officials and lawmakers acknowledge.

Now they are struggling to uproot it.

One central motivation of the extremists has seemed so far-fetched and fantastical that for a long time the authorities and investigators did not take it seriously, even as it gained broader currency in far-right circles.

Neo-Nazi groups and other extremists call it Day X — a mythical moment when Germany’s social order collapses, requiring committed far-right extremists, in their telling, to save themselves and rescue the nation.

Today Day X preppers are drawing serious people with serious skills and ambition.

Increasingly, the German authorities consider the scenario a pretext for domestic terrorism by far-right plotters or even for a takeover of the government.

“I fear we’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg,” said Dirk Friedriszik, a lawmaker in the northeastern state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, where Nordkreuz was founded.

“It isn’t just the KSK. The real worry is: These cells are everywhere. In the army, in the police, in reservist units.”

Nordkreuz was one of those groups elaborately preparing for Day X.

The domestic intelligence service got a tip in late 2016, and prosecutors started investigating in the summer of 2017.

But it took years before the network, or a small sliver of it, came before a court.

Even now, only one member of the group, Mr. Gross, has faced charges — for illegal weapons possession, not for any larger conspiracy.

Late last year, Mr. Gross was handed a 21-month suspended sentence.

The verdict was so mild that this year state prosecutors appealed it, kicking the case into another protracted round of deliberations.

Of some 30 Nordkreuz members, only two others, a lawyer and another police officer, are currently under investigation by the federal prosecutor on suspicion of plotting terrorism.

The outcome is typical of the authorities’ handling of far-right cases, extremism experts say.

The charges brought are often woefully narrow for the elaborate plots they are meant to deter and punish.

Almost always they focus on individuals, not the networks themselves.

But the obstacles to prosecuting such cases more aggressively point to another problem making the German authorities increasingly anxious:

Infiltration of the very institutions, like the police, that are supposed to be doing the investigating.

In July the police chief of the western state of Hesse resigned after police computers had been repeatedly accessed for confidential information that was then used by neo-Nazis in death threats.

It was in Hesse that a well-known neo-Nazi assassinated a regional politician last summer in a case that woke many Germans to the threat of far-right terrorism.

Some Nordkreuz members were serious enough that they had compiled a list of political enemies.

Heiko Böhringer, a local politician in the area where the group was based, had received death threats.

“I used to think these preppers, they’re harmless crazies who’ve watched too many horror movies,” Mr. Böhringer said.

“I changed my mind.”

Mr. Friedriszik, the state lawmaker, tried for years to focus public attention on the building danger of the far right, but found himself a voice in the wilderness.

“This movement has its fingertips in lots of places,” he said.

“All this talk of Day X can seem like pure fantasy. But if you look closer, you can see how quickly it turns into serious planning — and plotting.”




Northern Cross

The shooting range in Güstrow, a rural town in a northeast corner of Germany, sits at the end of a long dirt path secured by a heavy gate.

Barbed wire surrounds the area.

A German flag flutters in the wind.

“This is where it all started,” Axel Moll, a local decorator and Nordkreuz member with a hunting license and gun cabinet at home, told me when I was touring the area earlier this year.

Mr. Gross, the police officer, was a regular at the range.

He had been a parachutist and long-distance reconnaissance officer in the German army before his battalion was absorbed by Germany’s elite special forces, the KSK.

He never joined the KSK but knows several men who did.

Another regular was Frank Thiel, a champion in handgun competitions and sought-after tactical shooting instructor for police and military units across Germany.

In the fall of 2015, as hundreds of thousand of asylum seekers from wars in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan arrived in Germany, the men were appalled.

In their eyes, Germany faced a potential invasion from terrorists, a possible breakdown of its welfare system, maybe even unrest.

And their own government was welcoming the migrants.

“We were worried,” Mr. Gross, 49, recalled in one of several conversations with me this year.

In late 2015, while conducting a shooting workshop for the KSK in southern Germany, Mr. Thiel learned about an encrypted, countrywide chat network to share privileged information about the security situation in Germany, and how to prepare for a crisis.

It was run by a soldier named André Schmitt.

But everyone knew him as Hannibal.

Who wanted in?

Soon some 30 people, many of them regulars at the shooting range in Güstrow, joined the northern chapter of Mr. Schmitt’s network, avidly following his updates.

It was not long before Mr. Gross decided to create a parallel group so they could communicate and meet up locally.

Members lived in towns and villages in the region, shared far-right sympathies and considered themselves concerned citizens.

By January 2016, this network had become Nordkreuz.

There were two criteria for joining, Mr. Moll recalled:

“The right skills and the right attitude.”

Mr. Gross and another police officer in the group were members of what was then an emerging far-right party, the Alternative for Germany, now the third largest force in the national Parliament.

At least two others in the group had visited the Thule Seminar, an organization whose leaders had a portrait of Hitler on their wall and preach white supremacy.

Nordkreuz held meetings every few weeks, on the floor above a gym owned by one member or in Mr. Moll’s showroom, where the two of us also talked.

Sometimes they had a barbecue.

Other times, they invited guest speakers.

Once a retired military officer came and talked about crisis management, Mr. Moll recalled.

Another time they invited a “Reichsbürger,” or citizen of the Reich, a movement that does not recognize the postwar German state.

Over time, Nordkreuz members recalled, their group morphed into a close-knit brotherhood with a shared ambition that would come to dominate their lives: preparing for Day X.

They began hoarding enough supplies to survive for 100 days, including food, gasoline, toiletries, walkie-talkies, medicine and ammunition.

Mr. Gross collected 600 euros from each member of the group to pay for it.

In all, he amassed more than 55,000 rounds of ammunition.

The group identified a “safe house,” where members would decamp with their families on Day X: a former Communist vacation village deep in the woods.

The place was “ideal,” Mr. Moll said.

There was a stream providing fresh water, a small lake to wash themselves and clothes, a forest with wood to build and deer to hunt, even an old septic tank.

Didn’t all this seem a little far-fetched to them? I asked.

Mr. Moll smiled at my “Western naïveté.”

The region where they live is nestled between the former Iron Curtain and the Polish border.

Members had grown up in the former East Germany.

“Under Communism, everything was scarce,’’ Mr. Moll explained.

‘‘You had to get creative getting things through certain channels. You could not rely on things being in the supermarket. You could say we’re used to prepping.’’

And, he said, they had already seen one system collapse.

“You learn how to read between the lines. It’s an advantage.”

Through 2016, as hundreds of thousands more migrants arrived in Germany and a number of Islamist terrorist attacks took place in Europe, the planning got more serious.

Mr. Gross and other Nordkreuz members traveled in the fall to an arms fair in Nuremberg and met Mr. Schmitt, the special forces soldier running the nationwide chat network, in person.

Members of the group learned how to rappel down the tower of a disused fire station.

Two pickup points were designated as Day X meeting spots.

Two fully functioning operating theaters were built as makeshift field hospitals, in a basement and a mobile home.

“The scenario was that something bad would happen,” Mr. Gross told me.

“We asked ourselves, what did we want to prepare for? And we decided that if we were going to do this, we would go all the way.”


1/2
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on August 01, 2020, 11:02:15 am
(https://i.imgur.com/W13JwHk.jpg)

Body Bags and Quicklime

The question investigators are now scrutinizing is what did it mean to “go all the way.”

Mr. Gross insisted to me that the group was only prepping for what they saw as the day that the social order would collapse, for Day X.

He said they never planned any murders, or intended to cause any harm.

But at least one member of the group portrays a more ominous story.

“People were to be gathered and murdered,” Horst Schelski told investigators in 2017, according to transcripts of his statement shared with The New York Times.

Mr. Schelski is a former air force officer whose account is disputed by the others.

It pivots on a meeting he said took place at the end of 2016 at a highway truck stop in Sternberg, a small town about 40 minutes west of the shooting range the men frequented.

There, at a coffee stand that today resembles little more than a shed facing a bleak parking lot, Mr. Gross met with a handful of other men, in what had become a concentrated cell within Nordkreuz.

Among the others present were two men now under investigation on suspicion of plotting terrorism.

Under German law, they cannot be fully named.

One was Haik J., who like Mr. Gross was a police officer.

Another was a lawyer and local politician, Jan Henrik H.

Both declined to speak with me.

Jan Henrik H. was described by other members as particularly fervent and hateful.

On his birthdays, he held a shooting contest on a field behind his house in Rostock, a nearby city on Germany’s northern coast, Nordkreuz members recalled.

The winner got a trophy named for Mehmet Turgut, a Turkish street vendor killed in Rostock in 2004 by the National Socialist Underground, a far-right terrorist group.

Mr. Gross was the most recent winner.

Mr. Schelski told the police that Jan Henrik H. kept a thick binder in his garage with the names, addresses and photos of local politicians and activists whom he considered to be political enemies.

Some had sought to help refugees by seeking real estate to turn into shelters.

Much in the file came from publicly available sources.

But there were also handwritten notes with information obtained from a police computer.

As they drank coffee at the truck stop, Jan Henrik H. turned the conversation to “the people in the file,” who he said were “harmful” to the state and needed to be “done away with,” Mr. Schelski later told the police.

Jan Henrik H. wanted advice on how best to transport their captives once they had been rounded up.

He asked Mr. Schelski, a major in the state reservist unit, how they could get them past any checkpoints that might be created in a time of unrest.

Would uniforms help?

Army trucks?

After that meeting, Mr. Schelski told the police, he distanced himself from the group.

By then, the intelligence service was already watching.


Some eight months after the truck stop meeting, the authorities conducted the first in a series of raids on the homes of several Nordkreuz members.

Over two years, the raids and intelligence work uncovered weapons, ammunition, enemy lists, and a handwritten order list for Day X that included the body bags and quick lime.

I asked Mr. Gross about the body bags.

He told me they were “multipurpose vessels,” usable as cheap waterproof sleeping bag covers or for transporting large items.

The disclosure that the group had identified political enemies has rattled Mr. Böhringer, the local politician.

In 2015, two police officers came to sketch his house after he started receiving death threats.

“We want to know where you can get in, where you sleep, so that we can protect you,” they told him.

He said he wasn’t too concerned.

But in June 2018, Mr. Böhringer was called to the police station.

The homes of two Nordkreuz members had recently been raided, one of them a police officer based in his hometown:

Haik J., who had been at the truck stop meeting.

“They showed me a handmade sketch of my home,” Mr. Böhringer said.

“‘Do you recognize this?’ they had asked.”

“It was the exact same sketch that those officers had made in my home,” he said.

“I had to swallow pretty hard,” he recalled.

“The very people who said they wanted to protect me then passed this on to people who wanted to harm me.”

“They didn’t just want to survive Day X, they wanted to kill their enemies,” he said.

“It was concrete, what they were planning.”



Meeting With Marko

The first time I knocked on Mr. Gross’s door, in the village of Banzkow, about an hour’s drive from the shooting range, we ended up talking outside for two hours.

The second time, it started raining and he invited me into his red brick farmhouse on “Liberation Street,” named for Germany’s liberation from the Nazis at the end of World War II.

In the hallway his old military badge and uniform were on display.

A large map of Germany in 1937 dominated the wall.

Images of guns were ubiquitous.

On refrigerator magnets.

On mugs.

On a calendar.

It was the same home that the police had raided years earlier, in August 2017, and found more than two dozen weapons and 23,800 rounds of ammunition, some of it stolen from police and military stockpiles.

Another police raid in June 2019 uncovered another 31,500 rounds of ammunition and an Uzi submachine gun.

This time they arrested him.

In court, it took prosecutors almost 45 minutes to read the list of cartridges, guns, explosives and knives they had found.

He was only charged with illegal weapons possession.

In the ongoing terrorism investigation he is a witness, not a suspect.

“It’s pretty astounding,” said Lorenz Caffier, the state’s interior minister, who used to shake Mr. Gross’s hand at the annual special forces workshop in Güstrow.

“Someone who hoards that much ammunition at home, is close to far-right tendencies and also makes extremist comments in chats is no harmless prepper.”

“Marko G. has a key role,” he said.

Prosecutors have traced the illegal ammunition in Mr. Gross’s home to a dozen police and military depots across the country, indicating possible collaborators.

Several of the units shot in Güstrow.

“We don’t know how it got from there to him,” said Claudia Lange, a prosecutor.

Three other police officers are being investigated on suspicion of helping Mr. Gross.

Asked during the trial, Mr. Gross said he did not remember how he got the ammunition.

When I met him, he stuck to that line.

But otherwise he was not shy about sharing his views.

Chancellor Angela Merkel belongs “in the dock,” he said.

The multicultural cities in western Germany are “the caliphate.”

The best way to escape creeping migration was to move to the East German countryside, “where people are still called Schmidt, Schneider and Müller.”

A copy of Compact, a prominent far-right magazine, with Individual-1’s face on the cover, lay on a shelf.

A selection of Individual-1’s speeches had been translated into German in the issue.

“I like Individual-1,” Mr. Gross said.

As far back as 2009, some fellow police officers had voiced concerns about Mr. Gross’s far-right views, noting that he had brought books about the Nazis to work.

But no one intervened, and he was even groomed for promotion.

“There is no danger from the far right,” he insisted. “I don’t know a single neo-Nazi.”

Soldiers and police officers are “frustrated,” he told me the third time we met, ticking off complaints about migrants, crime and the mainstream media.

He likens the coverage of COVID-19 to the censored state broadcaster during Communism.

Instead, he says, he has a YouTube subscription to RT, the Russian state-controlled channel and other alternative media.

In that parallel universe of disinformation, he learns that the government is secretly flying in refugees after midnight.

That COVID-19 is a ploy to deprive citizens of their rights.

That Ms. Merkel works for what he calls the “deep state.”

“The deep state is global,” Mr. Gross said.

“It’s big capital, the big banks, Bill Gates.”

He still expects Day X, sooner or later.

Riots linked to an economic meltdown.

Or a blackout, because the German government is shuttering coal plants.

Nordkreuz members never told me, nor the authorities, the location of the disused vacation village that was their safe house for Day X.

The safe house is still active, said Mr. Gross, who at the height of Nordkreuz’s planning had boasted to a fellow member that his network contained 2,000 like-minded people in Germany and beyond.

“The network is still there,” he said.

2/2
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on August 07, 2020, 05:36:13 pm
Friday, 7th August 2o2o
US sent texts to Russians, Iranians offering reward for info on election interference
by Tal Axelrod

(https://i.imgur.com/ejCVdBp.jpg)







The State Department confirmed Friday that it was behind text messages sent to Russians and Iranians promoting a multimillion-dollar bounty for information on foreign efforts to meddle in this year's U.S. elections.

A spokesperson for the department said in an email said the messages were intended to foster international awareness of the issue and the reward.

"The U.S. Department of State's Rewards for Justice (RFJ) program is advertising a reward offer through SMS messages and a variety of other communications tools and techniques. Our SMS messages refer back to the verified official Rewards for Justice social media accounts, which are available in multiple languages," the spokesperson said.

"To defend our upcoming elections, the United States Government stands ready to respond to foreign threats with sharp consequences."

The comment comes after Russians and Iranians took to social media to discuss the unprompted text messages, leading to ridicule among some of the recipients.

The State Department first announced Thursday it would offer a $10 million reward to anyone with information on the work of foreign governments to interfere in U.S. elections through cyber operations.

The department is specifically asking for people to come forward with information regarding individuals trying to use hacking operations to meddle in federal, state or local elections in a way that violates the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.

"The ability of persons, as well as foreign powers, to interfere in or undermine public confidence in United States elections, including through the unauthorized accessing of election and campaign infrastructure, constitutes an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States," the State Department wrote in a "wanted" notice.

Concerns over election meddling have remained top of mind for lawmakers after Russia's complex effort to interfere in the 2016 election, which included a sophisticated social information disinformation campaign and hacks targeting election infrastructure in all 50 states, as well as the networks of the Democratic National Committee.

William Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, said Friday the government is primarily concerned over efforts by China, Iran and Russia to meddle again in 2020.

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He said that China prefers Individual-1 lose reelection because Beijing sees him as "unpredictable," Russia is working to hurt former Vice President Joe Biden's electoral chances because of "what it sees as an anti-Russia 'establishment,' " and Iran "seeks to undermine U.S. democratic institutions, Individual-1, and to divide the country in advance of the 2020 elections."



















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https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/us-sent-texts-to-russians-iranians-offering-reward-for-info-on-election-interference/ar-BB17HHrY (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/us-sent-texts-to-russians-iranians-offering-reward-for-info-on-election-interference/ar-BB17HHrY)
Title: Re: Mueller Probe Examining Whether Donald Trump Obstructed Justice
Post by: Battle on August 20, 2020, 07:16:00 am
Thursday, 20th August 2o2o
steve bannon Arrested!
by The Associated Press

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(Manhattan, NEW YORK) — Former White House adviser Steve Bannon was arrested Thursday on charges that he and three others ripped off donors to an online fundraising scheme “We Build The Wall.”

The charges were contained in an indictment unsealed in Manhattan federal court.

Federal prosecutors alleged that Bannon and three others “orchestrated a scheme to defraud hundreds of thousands of donors” in connection with an online crowdfunding campaign that raised more than $25 million to build a wall along the southern border of the United States.

A phone at the office of Bannon’s lawyer went unanswered Thursday morning.

A spokeswoman for Bannon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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https://apnews.com/6119b50079aaf30ba54b8e40bd36033b