Michael Sussmann was accused of misrepresenting himself to the FBI in a meeting with a federal agent and not disclosing that he was working with Hillary Clinton.
Sussmann was employed by Clinton’s campaign while he presented supposed links between the Trump organization and a Russian bank to the FBI in 2016. He is the first case in Durham’s three-year probe to have gone to trial so far and it just proved how corrupt our legal system really is. He was acquitted on Tuesday of lying when he handed over the now proven debunked computer data that purportedly linked Trump to Russia.
The largely biased Democrat-leaning jury claimed John Durham didn’t prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt.
I guess handing over falsified data isn’t proof of lying?
The verdict came early on the second day of deliberations in the first trial as to result of Durham’s probe of Trump-Russia investigations by the FBI and former special counsel Robert Mueller. The trial pulled its jurors from the heavily Democratic area surrounding Washington, D.C., raising questions of partisan bias.
Durham issued a statement after leaving the courthouse.
“While we are disappointed in the outcome, we respect the jury’s decision and thank them for their service,” he said.
“I also want to recognize and thank the investigators and the prosecution team for their dedicated efforts in seeking truth and justice in this case.”
As many many as three Clinton donors — including one who also supported Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez were among the prospective jurors, with Cooper overruling a prosecution request to disqualify one who said he would “strive for impartiality as best I can.”
Trump slammed the verdict as the result of a ‘corrupt’ legal system along with a host of Republicans.
‘Our Legal System is CORRUPT, our Judges (and Justices!) are highly partisan, compromised or just plain scared, our Borders are OPEN, our Elections are Rigged, inflation is RAMPANT, gas prices and food costs are “through the roof,” our Military “Leadership” is Woke, our Country is going to HELL, and Michael Sussmann is not guilty,’ the ex-president fumed on his social media app Truth Social.
‘How’s everything else doing? Enjoy your day!!!’
Durham’s filing alleges that Sussmann met with ‘the author of a now well-known dossier regarding Trump,’ believed to be Christopher Steele, at the offices of ‘Law Firm-1,’ believed to be Perkins Coie, his former employer.
Durham’s team was tasked with proving that Sussmann intentionally misled former FBI general counsel James Baker when he didn’t disclose he was acting on behalf of the Clinton campaign.
Sussmann gave Baker two thumb drives and three “white papers” that purported to reveal a secret, cyber backchannel between a Trump Organization computer server and the Kremlin-linked Alfa Bank. The move was allegedly part of a plan in which Sussmann hoped to create an “October surprise” to smear Trump by leaking the information to the media and sparking an FBI investigation.
“We are here because the FBI is our institution that shouldn’t be used as a political tool for anyone — not Republicans, not Democrats, not anyone,” prosecutor Deborah Brittain Shaw said during her opening statement.
Sussmann’s trial was overseen by federal Judge Christopher Cooper, who was nominated by former President Barack Obama.
During the trial, Durham’s team called 16 witnesses, including Baker, who said he was “100% confident” that Sussmann told him “he was not appearing before me on behalf of any particular client.”
The team also introduced into evidence a text message that Sussmann sent to Baker the night prior to the Sept. 19, 2016, meeting, saying he only wanted to help the FBI.
“Jim — it’s Michael Sussmann. I have something time-sensitive (and sensitive) I need to discuss. Do you have availability for a short meeting tomorrow? I’m coming on my own — not on behalf of a client or company — want to help the Bureau. Thanks,” the attorney wrote.
At another point in his testimony, Baker told jurors he might not have even held the meeting if he knew that Sussmann, a friend and former Justice Department colleague, was there on behalf of the Democratic presidential candidate.
But the trial’s biggest bombshell came from former Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook, who testified under cross-examination by the prosecution that Clinton personally approved the decision to give the unverified data to a reporter.
Mook described his end of the conversation with Clinton as telling her, “Hey, we have this and we want to share it with a reporter.”
“She agreed to that,” he said.
The defense’s strategy was to point out all of the errors the FBI made while investigating the case. They highlighted communications between the FBI that showed they knew he was connected to Clinton.
“Mr. Sussmann had [the Democratic National Committee] and [Hillary for America] tattooed on his forehead,” defense lawyer Sean Berkowitz told jurors in his closing argument Friday.
“Opposition research is not illegal,” Berkowitz said. “If it were, the jails of Washington, DC, would be teeming over.”
Sussmann said outside of the courthouse on Tuesday, ‘I told the truth to the FBI, and the jury clearly recognized that with their unanimous verdict today. I’m grateful to the members of the jury for their careful, thoughtful service.’
‘Despite being falsely accused, I’m relieved that justice ultimately prevailed in my case.’ He said the past year had been ‘difficult’ on him and his family.
‘But right now we are just grateful for the love and support of so many during this ordeal and I look forward to getting back to the work I love,’ the attorney said.
The special counsel has also indicted Russian expat Igor Danchenko, a source for the infamous and debunked Steele dossier, a discredited opposition research report that falsely alleged that Trump’s campaign was colluding with the Russian government. Danchenko faces five counts of making false statements to the FBI and will be tried in October.