Published: Mon, December 18, 2017
Health Care | By Alice Shelton

Special counsel obtains thousands of Trump transition emails — AP report

Special counsel obtains thousands of Trump transition emails — AP report

Special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian contacts with President Donald Trump's campaign has gained access to thousands of emails sent and received by Trump officials before the start of his administration, according to several people familiar with Trump's transition organization.

An Axios report from Saturday first reported that the Mueller team got their hands on emails from 12 accounts connected to the transition. And Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed him, told Congress last week that he monitors Mueller's operation closely and has seen nothing improper.

If Trump knows he has something to hide that's potentially impeachable, he should probably - putting ethics and the truth aside - fire Mueller and try to out-run the law.

But in August, while Beckler was in the hospital and incapacitated, Mueller's office and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents approached GSA twice for Trump transition materials, Langhofer said. "It also hosted the incoming administration's email system, which ended in "@ptt.gov" - or presidential transition team.

The emails pertain to 13 senior transition officials and many include national security discussions about possible Trump worldwide aims. Van Grack also declined to identify the 13 transition officials whose materials the special counsel's office had obtained.

"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", CNN quoted him as saying.

The email messages are said to have covered everything from potential appointments to policy planning.

In the letter, Langhofer says GSA staff "unlawfully produced TFA's private materials, including privileged communications, to the special counsel's office".

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The special counsel's critics have seized upon the case of Peter Strzok, a senior Federal Bureau of Investigation agent whom Mueller removed from his team for sending text messages critical of Trump. He did not name the transition officials who used the devices.

Complicating matters is that Langhofer, the lawyer who sent the letter to the Congressional committee chairs, said in the memo that there was an understanding that TFA was the custodian of the emails. Beckler died in September.

Mueller's probe into Moscow's election interference so far netted two convictions.

"GOP voices are accusing the team assembled by special counsel Robert Mueller of bias against President Trump - and they're appearing to set the stage for some action". Jeffress added the letter included no evidence to prove any privileged information had been obtained by Mueller's team and that even if it were, there are procedures for retrieving them.

On Saturday, the White House repeated that Trump had no intentions of firing Mueller amid fresh speculation from a congresswoman that he would be doing so.

I have to say that there would be something flawless about this - a special counsel investigating, in part, the circumstances that led to his appointment would be fired, perhaps leading to an impeachment about the circumstances of his ouster.

As it stands, Mueller's team has secured indictments against Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and Manafort's business associate Rick Gates.

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