A sentencing memo submitted by defense lawyers for former Donald Trump campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos late on Friday shows that Papadopoulos must have told the Trump campaign that Russia possessed hacked Democratic emails months before the stolen emails were released onto the internet by WikiLeaks and the Russian-created front DC Leaks, according to two expert journalists, who posted their analyses to Twitter on Saturday. According to the memo and the charges against him by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, as Inquisitr has reported, Papadopoulos was told in April of 2016 that Russia possessed so-called "dirt" on Democrat Hillary Clinton in the form of "thousands" of emails.
The Russia-linked academic who told Papadopoulos about the emails, Joseph Mifsud, has since disappeared, and Mueller said in his own sentencing memo that Papadopoulos helped Mifsud avoid interrogation in the United States by lying to the FBI about his contacts with the professor, Inquisitr also reported.
The memo filed in U.S. District Court in Washington D.C. by Papadopoulos's lawyers denies that Papadopoulos hindered the Russia investigation, but admits that Papadopoulos told the Greek foreign minister about Russia's then-secret Clinton "dirt" in May of 2016, which was still two months before the hackers posted the emails online and they became public knowledge.
Papadopoulos is third from left in the below photo released by the Trump campaign of a foreign policy meeting on March 31, 2016.Papadopoulos also told an Australian diplomat about the Russian hacked emails in May of 2016, according to The Washington Post. After the emails were leaked online in July of 2016, the Australians told U.S. authorities about the information Papadopoulos had conveyed, sparking the Trump-Russia investigation that still continues today.
"Papadopolous says that Misfud told him about the email hacking but HE DID NOT TELL ANYONE ELSE ON THE CAMPAIGN. At the same time, Papadopolous was happy to tell lots of other random people, including the Greek Foreign Minister in May 2016," wrote Think Progress site editor Judd Legum in a Saturday Twitter thread.
"Papadopolous' sentencing memo describes him as desperate to impress the Trump campaign. Hard to square this with the idea that he would keep this explosive information secret, while telling people outside of the campaign about it," Legum continued.
In fact, as Legum notes, a former high-ranking Trump administration official, John K. Mashburn, testified to Congress in March of this year that he had received an email from Papadopoulos, in which Papadopolous told him about the emails. But that email has vanished, according to The New York Times.
Seth Abramson, another Trump-Russia expert and author of the upcoming book Proof of Collusion, also found it implausible that Papadopoulos never told the Trump campaign about Russia's possession of the emails.
"Papadopoulos appears [to] say (get this) that he told the Greek Foreign Minister about the emails but not anyone on the Trump campaign. He worked for the Trump campaign, and they sent him to Greece to meet the Foreign Minister! So how does that make sense?" Abramson wrote on Twitter.
Whether Trump or his campaign knew about the stolen emails in advance is a crucial point in the Russia collusion investigation. If Trump had advance knowledge that a crime would be committed by Russia to help his campaign, and he did nothing about it, that would be clear evidence of a conspiracy between Trump and Russia to commit election fraud, according to lawyer Lanny Davis, who represents Trump's former "fixer" Michael Cohen.
"If there is a conversation and a plan for there to be dirt on Hillary Clinton, and then someone knows the way you're willing to get the dirt is a Russian agent called WikiLeaks... and then WikiLeaks hacks into an email account, which is a crime, then you have committed a crime of conspiracy," Davis told The Washington Post, adding that conspiracy could also be involved if "somebody knows about a crime about to be committed and doesn't call the FBI."
In February, as Inquisitr reported, Mueller was already asking witnesses about Trump's possible advance knowledge of the Russian "dirt" emails.