Trump campaign associates 'materially impaired' investigation by lying, Mueller says

Source: The Hill | April 18, 2019 | Justin Wise

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s final report about the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election said Trump campaign associates “materially impaired” the investigation by lying.

The report makes the statement as it details the reasons why criminal charges were not brought against anyone in regards to collusion. The report said there was insufficient evidence to charge any member of the Trump campaign with conspiring with the Kremlin to influence the election. 

But it also states that several Trump associates’ lies to the special counsel’s office and to Congress “impaired” the team’s efforts to probe Russia’s election interference. 

“[T]he investigation established that several individuals affiliated with the Trump Campaign lied to the Office, and to Congress, about their interactions with Russian-affiliated individuals and related matters,” Mueller’s report said. “Those lies materially impaired the investigation of Russian election interference.”

“The Office charged some of those lies as violations of the federal false statements statute,” the report states, before citing instances of ex-Trump officials pleading guilty to making false statements to investigators. 

Former national security adviser Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to lying about his interactions with a Russian ambassador to the U.S. during the transition period. Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, pleaded guilty to making false statements to Congress about efforts to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. 

Former campaign adviser George Papadopoulos and former campaign chairman Paul Manafort also pleaded guilty to making false statements to investigators. 

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