A sleepy probe, led by U.S. Attorney John Durham, is supposed to be reviewing possible misconduct by federal law enforcement and intelligence officials who boosted the Russia hoax against President Donald Trump and his 2016 election campaign.
The U.S. intelligence community used a private intelligence report, written by Christopher Steele, a former head of the Russia Desk for British intelligence (MI6) to implicate the president in a conspiracy to steal the 2016 U.S. election. It was commissioned by Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson who was hired by the campaign of Trump’s opponent for president, Hillary Clinton.
The report, written from June to December 2016, contained allegations of misconduct, conspiracy, and co-operation between Trump’s campaign and the government of Russia.
Durham was nominated by Trump to serve as U.S. Attorney for Connecticut in 2017 and confirmed in 2018. He was appointed to determine if intelligence collection involving the Trump campaign was “lawful and appropriate” by Attorney General William Barr in October last year.
He was even empowered to impanel a grand jury and hand down indictments last fall. Not a single charge has been announced against anyone falling under the scope of the six-month probe.
Durham showed signs of life Monday, announcing that he charged a man with threatening to kill House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA). The Justice Department has been very protective of, and overly cautious with Democrats and their affiliates in every way with regard to its ongoing investigations.
The federal prosecutor sent out a press release noting he charged Robert Phelps of Torrington, Connecticut, “with threatening to assault and murder a U.S. official, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years, and making interstate threats, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of five years.”
Phelps, 62, was arrested on March 13 after allegedly sending Schiff a vulgar and violent email on Nov. 12, while he was overseeing impeachment proceedings against the president. He appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge William Garfinkel in Bridgeport and was released on a $25,000 bond.
Concerned citizens have been impatiently tapping their fingers, waiting on Durham to exercise his prosecutorial powers on several documented liars and leakers in the FBI who orchestrated the Mueller investigation and have been skating without any charges.
The Justice Department said at least two of four Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants used to spy on Carter Page, an American petroleum industry consultant and former foreign-policy adviser to Trump, as well as his campaign, were “not valid.”
Kevin Clinesmith, a former FBI lawyer, is under criminal investigation by Durham after Horowitz found he altered a key document in FISA filings related to Page. The FBI illegally surveilled Page because they suspected him of being an agent of Russia. Page was never charged with wrongdoing.
Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz also found 17 “significant errors or omissions” the FBI made in its four applications to surveil Page. The IG concluded that the FBI was unable to corroborate allegations that Page was a Russian agent.
The report accused FBI agents of willfully withholding exculpatory information related to Page, and information that was damaging to the credibility of Steele, who implicated Page as a Russian asset.
Steele boldly told Durham to go pound sand earlier this month, declining to give an interview to the prosecutor’s team. A source also told Fox News last month that Durham has not yet interviewed former CIA Director John Brennan or former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper who insisted the claims in the dossier were true.
By contrast former special counsel Robert Mueller III was moving at warp speed after he was appointed by former deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein in May, 2017. His mission was to investigate the concocted and patently false allegations of Russian interference and any matters arising from the probe. One month later the probe expanded to investigate Trump for possible obstruction of justice.
By October 30 Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort and his business partner Rick Gates had been indicted on 12 counts, including conspiracy against the U.S. and money laundering.
That same day, Trump’s former campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, pleaded guilty to making false statements to the FBI regarding his contact with Russian leadership.
On the first day of December former national security advisor Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to “willfully and knowingly false, fictitious and fraudulent statements and representations” to the FBI regarding his conversations with Russian ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak.
After nearly two years Mueller’s team had racked up 199 criminal charges, 37 indictments or guilty pleas, and 5 prison sentences. This array of prosecutorial activities was undertaken for process crimes arising from the investigation or crimes totally unrelated to Russian interference.
Republican investigators have discovered clues suggesting that Mueller knew there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia before the end of 2017. Why didn’t he wrap up his probe sooner and declare Trump not guilty?
The Justice Department was even forced to abandon its Russia-connected case against Concord Management and Consulting LLC and Concord Catering on Monday.
The Russian companies were charged with conspiring to defraud the U.S. government by orchestrating social media campaigns to interfere in the 2016 presidential election. The companies were among three implicated in the Russia probe.
Mueller charged a total of thirteen individuals in February 2018 for allegedly using social media to divide Americans and sow discord among the electorate.
Concord was the sole defendant to enter an appearance in federal court to dispute the charges. The organization is controlled by Yevgeny Prigozhin, a wealthy businessman known as “Putin’s chef” for his ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin. He has been sanctioned by the U.S. over Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Durham’s probe “is due to be completed sometime this summer,” less than a year after it began, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) said last week. Sources told Fox News it was expected to conclude between July to September, but the timeline could be extended due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Observers are dramatically lowering their expectations for criminal charges against anyone who was involved in the multi-year conspiracy to take down the president using the Steele dossier.