Robert Mueller Has Empaneled a Grand Jury in Russia Investigation

Aug 05, 2017, 00:15
Robert Mueller Has Empaneled a Grand Jury in Russia Investigation

Impaneling a new grand jury also provides Mueller with another investigative tool as he seeks to get to the bottom of whether Trump campaign officials colluded with the Russians - who, per USA intelligence officials, orchestrated cyberattacks against Democratic institutions to try and influence the 2016 presidential election. Congress and the Intelligence agencies are carrying out multiple investigations into the Russian interference in the US presidential elections.

The sources also said that impaneling the grand jury in all likelihood means that the investigation into Russian election meddling will take at least several months.

Sekulow said he believed Trump's business deals dating back years were outside the scope of the investigation. Mueller will be seeking to determine whether Trump Sr had prior knowledge of the meeting or whether he was briefed on it afterwards. Earlier on Thursday, the U.S. Senate introduced two bills with the express aim to limit the ability of Trump to sack the special prosecutor the way he had sacked James Comey the FBI Director when he started investigating deeply into the connection of Trump's team with Russian Federation.

Booker said that special counsel should not be intimidated or interfered with because of where the investigation goes. Grand jury subpoenas are the primary method by which prosecutors gather evidence in criminal investigations, and evidence gathered by one grand jury is easily movable to another.

He said the empanelment of a grand jury is "standard prosecutorial approach to this and frankly not unusual in that regard".

Trump ignored shouted questions about Mueller as he departed the White House on Thursday afternoon.

"Grand jury matters are typically secret, the White House favors anything that accelerates the conclusion of his work fairly...."

The Wall Street Journal reported earlier Thursday that Mueller has impaneled a grand jury, which began its work a few weeks ago.

A lawyer at the Squire Patton Boggs law firm and a former federal prosecutor, Thomas Zeno revealed to The Journal that the grand jury was "confirming that this is a very vigorous investigation going on".

Ty Cobb, special counsel to the White House, said he wasn't aware a grand jury was impaneled.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) probably also pushed the president's buttons today when he introduced legislation making it harder for him to fire Mueller.