In a Friday interview with ABC’s Washington affiliate WJLA, conservative political pundit Jerome Corsi explained to WJLA‘s Armstrong Williams how he became the “lynchpin” of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian interests during the 2016 election.
Corsi, who spent 40 hours in interviews with Mueller’s team and made two appearances before a federal grand jury, rejected a plea deal from Mueller after allegedly lying to federal prosecutors. Corsi went on to file a criminal complaint against Mueller earlier this month, alleging improper conduct by Mueller and his team. He also accused the Special Counsel of harassing Corsi’s family with constant surveillance, according to AlterNet.
“They wanted me to plead to a crime I didn’t commit,” Corsi said. “These special prosecutors are politically motivated. They don’t have a crime.”
Despite publicly acknowledging last month that he expects to be indicted by Mueller, the Special Counsel has yet to press charges against Corsi. Corsi has been a person of interest in the investigation due to his ties to Roger Stone, who is also under investigation for his ties to Julian Assange and the WikiLeaks release of Hillary Clinton’s emails after they were stolen by Russian hackers from Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta just before the 2016 presidential election. Stone has also yet to be indicted, despite also publicly acknowledging that he expects one. Just before the release of the emails, Stone had made public statements suggesting that he had contacts and first-hand knowledge of Assange’s plans for the release of the emails.
In an August tweet before the WikiLeaks release of the Clinton emails, Stone said “Trust Me, It Will Soon The Podesta’s Time In The Barrel. #CrookedHillary.”
“Robert Mueller and his prosecutors figured I had a connection to Julian Assange—that I could link Roger Stone to Julian Assange and from Stone back to Trump. And that was going to be their collusion theory for the theft of the DNC emails by the Russians,” Corsi explained. “They figured I was the lynchpin because I could link Roger Stone to Assange. It just wasn’t true. I couldn’t do it.”
“Their questions were all biased with a predetermined concept of the crime they envision happened, Russian collusion, and the person ultimately responsible, Donald Trump,” he told Williams.
However, shortly after his August tweet, Stone contacted Corsi and asked him to help construct an “alternative explanation” for the tweet that would cover up its connection to Assange. Corsi drafted a memo for Stone that explained that the tweet referred to research that Stone had done into business deals that Podesta and Clinton made with Russian companies. Corsi acknowledged that the memo was “a public relations fabrication.”
“I presented a cover story for Roger,” Corsi admitted in his interview with Armstrong before also admitting “Yes, it was a lie.” The federal grand jury had suggested that Corsi had conspired with Stone to commit perjury.
U.S. intelligence agencies concluded that the Russian hackers used WikiLeaks as a “cutout” to expose Clinton’s emails for the purpose of helping Donald Trump win the election. Stone had sent Corsi an email in July that read “Get to Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London and get the pending WikiLeaks emails.” Corsi testified that he promptly forwarded the email to Assange’s lawyer, Ted Malloch.
Corsi claims that he did not have direct knowledge of the Clinton emails, but that his apparent expectation of their release prior to the October bombshell was based on information he obtained from Stone and a source he only knew as “Lou Hodges,” who informed Corsi of the configuration of the DNC server.
“They were sure I had to have a source and I didn’t have a source,” Corsi said.