Confirming that Special Counsel Mueller’s probe has a particular interest in the business dealing of Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, the WaPo reports that FBI agents “raided the Alexandria home of President Trump’s former campaign chairman late last month, using a search warrant to seize documents and other materials.”
Federal agents reportedly appeared at Manafort’s home without advance warning two weeks ago, in the predawn hours on Wednesday, July 26, the day after he met voluntarily with the staff for the Senate Intelligence Committee. The WaPo reports that the served search warrant was “wide-ranging and FBI agents working with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III departed the home with various records.”
The raid came as Manafort has been voluntarily producing documents to congressional committees investigating Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election. The search warrant indicates investigators may have argued to a federal judge they had reason to believe Manafort could not be trusted to turn over all records in response to a grand jury subpoena.
It could also have been intended to send a message to President Trump’s former campaign chairman that he should not expect gentle treatment or legal courtesies from Mueller’s team.
Among the documents taken were materials Manafort had already provided to Congress, WaPo’s sources said. “If the FBI wanted the documents, they could just ask [Manafort] and he would have turned them over,” said one adviser close to the White House. Clearly, the intention was different.
For now, the significance of the records seized from Manafort’s apartment is unclear, with the publication adding that Manafort provided documents to both the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate and House intelligence committees.
The documents are said to include notes Manafort took while attending a meeting with Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer at Trump Tower in June 2016.
The news comes one week after the WSJ reported that Mueller had empanelled a grand jury in his ongoing probe of “Russian interference” in the US election, a development which while expected, has been seen by some as adverse for Trump and the members of his presidential campaign.
Following the news, yields are edging lower yet again while the USD is suddenly looking shaky after spiking earlier in the session.