This story will be updated throughout the day. Please return for continuing updates, as I’m going through the comments and the full redacted report has not yet been made available.
WikiLeaks: Russian Efforts To Publish Clinton and DNC Emails
10:43 a.m. EST: Attorney General William Barr also discussed Russia’s efforts to publish the “stolen emails and documents on the Internet.”
The Special counsel found that after the GRU disseminated some of the stolen documents to entities that it controlled, DC Leaks and Guccifer2, the GRU transferred some of the stolen materials to WikiLeaks for publication. WikiLeaks then made a series of document dumps,” Barr added.
Barr said the special counsel also investigated whether any member, or affiliate of the Trump campaign encouraged or otherwise played a role in these dissemination efforts under applicable law, publication of these types of material would not be criminal unless the publisher also participated in the underlying hacking conspiracy.”
The special counsel, however, did not find that “any person associated with the Trump campaign illegally participated in the dissemination of the materials,” Barr said.
Barr added that “finally, the special counsel investigated a number of links or contacts between the Trump campaign officials and individuals connected with the Russian government during the 2016 presidential campaign. After reviewing these contacts the special counsel did not find any conspiracy to violate U.S. law involving Russian linked persons or any persons associated with the Trump campaign.”
“So that’s the bottom line, after nearly two years of investigation, thousands of subpoenas, hundreds of warrants and witness interviews the special counsel confirmed that the Russian government sponsored efforts to illegally interfere with the 2016 presidential election but did not find that the Trump campaign or other Americans colluded in those efforts,” he added.
10:26 a.m. EST: Attorney General William Barr’s statements on debunked Russia collusion with President Trump and his 2016 campaign.
“But thanks to the special counsel’s thorough investigation we now know that the Russian operatives who perpetrated these schemes did not have the cooperation of President Trump or the Trump campaign, or knowing assistance of any other American for that matter. That is something that all Americans can and should be grateful to have confirmed.
Two Main Efforts By the Russian Government To Interfere In 2016 Election
Barr stated at DOJ press conference: “The special counsel’s report outlines two main efforts by the Russian government to influence the 2016 elections. First the report details efforts by the Internet Research Agency (IRA), a Russian company with close ties to the Russian government to sow social discord among American voters through disinformation and social media operations. Following a thorough investigation of this disinformation campaign the special counsel brought charges in federal court against several Russian nationals and entities for their respective roles in this scheme. Those charges remain pending and the individual defendants remain at large. But the special counsel found no evidence that any American, including anyone associated with Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government or the IRA in this illegal scheme. Indeed, as the report states ‘the investigation did not identify evidence that any U.S. person knowingly or intentionally coordinated with the IRA’s interference operation.’
Barr noted that the special counsel’s report also “details efforts by the Russian military officials associated with the GRU, the Russian military intelligence organization to hack into computers and steal documents and emails from individuals associated with the Democratic party and Hillary Clinton’s campaign for the purpose of eventually publicizing these documents.”
After a full investigation by special counsel prosecutors charges were brought on Russian military officers for their role in the hacking of Clinton and DNC emails, Barr noted.
“Those charges are still pending and the defendants remain at large,” he added. “There was no evidence of the Trump campaign collusion with the Russian government’s hacking.
10:18 a.m. EST: Attorney General William Barr said the full redacted report issued by Special Counsel Robert Mueller will be made available to the public after it is received by Congress. He noted that the report’s redactions were made by the intelligence community, Mueller’s team of prosecutors and those in the DOJ and that no-one outside of that community has viewed the fully redacted report. The redactions were made to protect sources and methods and ongoing litigation in the Southern District of New York, as well as Roger Stone’s case.
10:00 a.m. EST: After nearly two years of the investigations into alleged collusion between the Russian government and President Trump’s campaign special counsel prosecutors, many of whom were registered Democrats, found no evidence that either Trump or anyone associated with his campaign conspired with Russia. Robert Mueller’s team did, however, find evidence that the Hillary Clinton emails published by WikiLeaks in 2016 were delivered by Russian military spies to Julian Assange’s publication, according to Attorney General William Barr, who was flanked to his left by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
“The special counsel’s report states that it is ‘investigation did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities,'” said Barr, as he read his notes from a podium. “Im sure Americans share my concern about the efforts of the Russian government’s to interfere in our election. As the special counsel report makes clear, the Russian government sought to interfere in our election process.”
Further, Barr noted in his 20 plus minute presser that WikiLeaks is not guilty of publishing the documents as there was no evidence that Assange’s team actively participated in the hack into the Democratic National Committee’s server or phishing schemes.
As for obstruction, Barr emphasized that there was no evidence that President Trump obstructed justice in the investigation and instead, did not use his executive privilege to interfere in any part of the investigation.