Published: Wed, May 15, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Barr working with intel chiefs on Russia review

Barr working with intel chiefs on Russia review

The New York Timesreported Monday night that Barr had appointed U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut John Durham to investigate the origins of the investigation into the Trump campaign in 2016.

President Trump recently referred to the Russian Federation investigation as one of the biggest hoaxes in USA history.

Wray said last week that he did not consider court-approved Federal Bureau of Investigation surveillance to be "spying" and said he had no evidence the Federal Bureau of Investigation illegally monitored Trump's campaign.

Trump told reporters Tuesday it was "a great thing" that Barr opened the inquiry but said he did not ask Barr to investigate the matter.

Durham's new assignment comes just weeks after the US Justice Department's release in mid-April of the redacted version of the long-awaited report summarizing the outcome of the investigation into allegations of Trump-Russia collusion and Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 US election.

Several other media outlets also reported Durham has been tapped to lead the inquiry.

"I think spying on a political campaign is a big deal", he said. "I am so proud of our attorney general that he is looking into it".

Durham was nominated by Trump in 2017 after serving as a lawyer within the Justice Department since 1982, according to The Times.

Durham is a career prosecutor who was nominated for his post as USA attorney in CT by Trump. These concerns were in part fueled by the revelation that the FISA warrant obtained to surveil Trump campaign national-security adviser Carter Page was based on information provided in the unsubstantiated Steele dossier.

The Durham inquiry is separate from an investigation by the Justice Department's Inspector General. "He's totally above politics", said Starr, noting that the Obama administration gave Durham some key assignments, including an investigation of Central Intelligence Agency detainees.

The former attorney general Jeff Sessions had appointed another USA attorney, John Huber, in March 2018 to review aspects of the Russian Federation investigation, following grievances from Republican lawmakers.

In 2008, former Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey assigned Durham to investigate the CIA's destruction of videotapes which showed terrorism suspected being tortured.

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