Special counsel John Durham has been tasked with investigating the origins of allegations that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia ahead of the 2016 election.
That investigation has already resulted in criminal charges, most recently against Igor Danchenko, who was a source used to create the widely discredited dossier compiled by ex-British spy Christopher Steele.
More allegations involving Steele dossier
According to Fox News, Danchenko was indicted on Thursday on charges related to lying to FBI agents about the nature of his involvement in the saga.
He was a central source used by Steele in compiling the notorious dossier and alleged nefarious connections between then-candidate Donald Trump and the Russian government.
Steele had reportedly been contracted by Democratic Party-aligned opposition research firm Fusion GPS, which had in turn been hired by the Perkins Coie law firm on behalf of 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
The dossier was subsequently leaked to the media and provided to the FBI, which used it as the basis for a federal investigation. A resulting scandal stretched for years until special counsel Robert Mueller produced a report that presented no evidence of any such Trump-Russia collusion.
A news release from Durham’s office on Thursday confirmed that Danchenko had been arrested after a grand jury indictment was unsealed that included five counts of making false statements to federal agents.
The latest Durham indictment
The 39-page indictment alleges that Danchenko’s false statements were made on five separate occasions during 2017 and were in regard to his own sources for the information he provided to Steele.
Specifically, investigators say he lied about speaking to certain individuals who provided specific information and had actually fabricated the allegations against Trump.
Danchenko is now the third individual to face charges as part of the Durham probe.
Last month, the special counsel indicted former Clinton attorney Michael Sussmann on suspicion of making false statements to the FBI in 2016 regarding his work for the former secretary of state and the DNC at the time he turned over information alleging connections between Trump and Russia’s Alfa Bank.
Prior to that, Durham indicted former FBI attorney Kevin Clinesmith on charges of making fraudulent changes to a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court application to spy on former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.