Nearly nine months since former President Donald Trump left office, new details continue to emerge related to what he often dismissed as a “hoax” investigation into alleged Russian collusion.
According to The New York Times, former U.S. attorney John Durham plans to indict “a prominent cybersecurity lawyer” with possible ties to 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
“On behalf of an unnamed client”
As that report asserts, Durham, who is leading an investigation into the origins of the Russian collusion probe, already informed the Department of Justice that he will ask a grand jury to indict Michal Sussman on charges related to lying to the FBI.
Before taking a position at the Perkins Coie law firm, which is known for representing Democratic politicians, Sussman was a federal prosecutor. He reportedly argued on behalf of the Democratic National Committee following a 2016 cyberattack linked to Russian hackers.
The allegations against him stem from the same year and were apparently uncovered as a result of Durham’s suspicion that the law firm served as a middleman for the Clinton campaign to feed Russia-related information — or misinformation — to the FBI.
Sussman allegedly met with FBI lawyer James A. Baker for the ostensible purpose of providing cybersecurity data.
At that time, Sussman asserted that he was not representing a client. During congressional testimony in 2017, however, he said the meeting was requested “on behalf of an unnamed client who was a cybersecurity expert and had helped analyze the data.”
“He will prevail at trial”
Furthermore, billing records from Perkins Coie reportedly revealed that Sussman billed some of his hours to the Clinton presidential campaign.
Although Durham is hoping to catch the attorney in a lie, Sussman’s own lawyers have already issued a statement denying he is guilty of any such crime.
“Any prosecution here would be baseless, unprecedented and an unwarranted deviation from the apolitical and principled way in which the Department of Justice is supposed to do its work,” the attorneys wrote. “We are confident that if Mr. Sussmann is charged, he will prevail at trial and vindicate his good name.”
The Durham indictment is expected in the near term due to the rapidly approaching five-year statute of limitations. Attorney General Merrick Garland has reportedly signaled that he will not seek to block Durham.
Although it might not be the groundbreaking indictment many Republicans had hoped to see from the Durham investigation, it does provide evidence that his team is still on the case.