DOJ apeases Trump with internal investigation of FBI campaign informant

Stefan Halper, a University of Cambridge professor with deep ties to American and British intelligence, has been publicly revealed to be the informant inside Donald Trump’s presidential campaign; however, the goal was not to entrap Trump’s political aides but instead investigate Russian interference in the 2016 election.

In a tweet last week, President Trump accused the FBI of sending an informant to infiltrate his 2016 campaign, “for political purposes secretly.”

Trump met with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray a day after his tweeted “demand” for the Justice Department to investigate whether his 2016 presidential campaign was improperly “infiltrated.”  On Monday, DOJ announced it would inquire about “any irregularities” in the FBI’s handling of the matter.

Despite the president’s public wrangling, no evidence suggests the FBI planted a government agent to interfere with Trump’s campaign. However, it has been noted by several media sources that Halper was not embedded for political purposes, but was instated based on evidence of Russia’s intent try and disrupt America’s presidential election.

Furthermore, the FBI formally opened their counterintelligence investigation of Russia on July 31, 2016, but it is unknown when Halper became involved.

Through operation Crossfire Hurricane, in the summer of 2016, Halper engaged in months of reaching out and ultimately met three different Trump officials: George Papadopolous, Sam Clovis and Carter Page.

According to the Washington Post, Halper had met with Clovis to offer his foreign-policy expertise to the Trump campaign. Halper also met with Page, who never had an impression that the academic was trying to “reel him in.”

On September 2, 2016, Halper reached out to a third Trump aide, Papadopoulos, via email. Papadopoulos, a campaign volunteer with little foreign policy experience, pursued meetings to discuss U.S.-Russia ties.
His emails illustrated an eagerness to strengthen the campaign’s connections to the Kremlin, but Papadopoulos never stated his intent.

Experts in Russian intelligence-gathering suspect Moscow was looking for entry points through low-level campaign aides to disrupt the 2016 election.

Subsequently, Halper was charged with coaxing potentially compromising information from Papadopoulos, Clovis and Page.

Papadopoulos later pleaded guilty to misrepresenting the timing of conversations, knowledge, and nature of Russian connections, and to making false statements to the FBI about his involvement with allies of the Russian government.

 

[New York Post] [Reuters] [Washington Post] [USA Today] [Photo courtesy CHRIS KLEPONIS-POOL//GETTY IMAGES via Inquisitr]