Trump transition lawyer accuses Mueller of unlawfully obtaining emails

Geneva Matthews
December 18, 2017

The documents were provided to Mr Mueller's team by the GSA in September in response to requests from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

But here's how Mueller got those emails, according to the picture of events emerging on Sunday: According to CNN, he simply asked the General Services Administration, which hosted domain on which the emails were stored, to hand them over.

The letter blames the agency's counsel, Lenny Loewentritt, and his "career GSA staff" for turning over thousands of unredacted emails without notifying the transition team.

"When we have obtained emails in the course of our ongoing criminal investigation, we have secured either the account owner's consent or appropriate criminal process", a spokeperson for the special counsel told CNN and Fox News.

Mr Flynn was sacked by Mr Trump in February for misleading senior administration officials about his contacts with Russia's ambassador to the US.

While there's nothing yet to indicate whether there was anything explosive in those emails, the administration is clearly spooked.

Mueller's probe into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to secure the USA presidential election has prompted a guilty plea from Flynn for lying about his conversations with the Russian ambassador to the U.S.

"I seriously doubt there is anything here to taint the [Mueller] investigation", said William Jeffress, a white-collar defense attorney who represented Vice President Dick Cheney's senior aide, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, during the Valerie Plame CIA leak investigation.

The federal investigation and others in Congress have indeed been a drag on the Trump administration's first-year political agenda, which had led to speculation that Trump wants to fire Mueller to conclude the probe.

Langhofer argues in the letter that decision by GSA officials went against what he calls "the GSA's previous acknowledgement concerning" the Trump campaign's "rightful ownership and control of" transition team materials.

Both Mueller's team and Loewentritt pushed back on Langhofer's accusations. "Future transitions will have to re-examine this relationship", he said.

Among the officials who used transition email accounts was former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, who pleaded guilty to a count of making false statements to FBI agents in January and is now cooperating with Mueller's investigation.

The emails pertain to 13 senior transition officials and many include national security discussions about possible Trump worldwide aims.

Rep. Elijah Cummings, the top Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, questioned why Trump officials would be taking issue with an attempt by GSA to cooperate with investigators.

The letter added that a warrant should have been obtained for such materials, and said it violated the Presidential Transition Act.

"I'm increasingly anxious Republicans will shut down the House intelligence committee investigation at the end of the month", Adam Schiff, the leading Democrat on the House intelligence committee said prior to reports of the letter this weekend.

Mr. Trump said he was "quite sad" to see Mueller had obtained the emails but doesn't think they contain any incriminating information.

Other reports by VideoGamingPros

Discuss This Article