No matter how furiously that the president and his allies attempt to put an end to the Russia investigation, it’s continuing to move forward, with Special Counsel Robert Mueller having so far charged four Trump associates with crimes, including, most recently, former presidential national security adviser Michael Flynn.
None of the crimes are directly related to the allegations of the Trump team assisting the Russians in their efforts to alter the outcome of the 2016 presidential election; there has not yet been any official declaration of the Trump team’s apparent collusion as criminal. It’s actions concurrent to that which have been proven criminal, including actions taken in an attempt to cover up the truth. Flynn isn’t even the only former Trump ally to be charged with lying to the FBI.
In relation to Mueller’s ongoing efforts to fully unravel the Trump team’s web of lies. he is reported to be continuing to look into the infamous 2016 meeting involving Donald Trump Jr., Paul Manafort, Jared Kushner, and a Kremlin-connected lawyer, among others. Trump Jr. went into that meeting seeking Russian government dirt on Hillary Clinton.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Mueller’s efforts to understand every single interaction that members of Trump’s inner circle had with the Russian participants in that meeting has led him to a brief interaction between Ivanka Trump and two of the meeting’s participants.
Ivanka Trump apparently spoke briefly with both the Kremlin connected lawyer — a woman named Natalia Veselnitskaya — and a Russian lobbyist named Rinat Akhmetshin as they left Trump Tower that day back in 2016. She did not participate in the meeting, and a source speaking to the LA Times claims that her interactions with the two participants consisted of nothing more than pleasantries, but, as the publication puts it, federal investigators still “want to know every contact the two visitors had with Trump’s family members and inner circle.”
The revelation from the LA Times about Ivanka Trump comes in conjunction with a revelation that Mueller’s team has called back at least one of the participants in the 2016 meeting for questioning. The paper did not reveal the identity of this individual.
Allegations have arisen of obstruction of justice in connection to the meeting thanks to a deceptive initial statement issued by the Trump team that asserted the meeting was about little more than restarting American adoptions of Russian children. Mueller has sought to fully understand what role the president had in drafting that statement and whether or not he or anyone else involved in it were trying to deceive federal investigators.
As the LA Times notes, the 2016 meeting has been in the news again this week thanks to former Trump ally Steve Bannon being revealed to have called it “treasonous.”
In response to both Bannon and the wider continued inquiry, Trump and other members of his team have maintained their innocence.
Trump Jr. went after Bannon on Twitter, as his father eventually also did after issuing a statement asserting that his former ally had lost his mind.
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