Cybersecurity attorney Michael Sussmann has been handed an indictment over his involvement in the Russia hoax attempting to claim former President Trump colluded with Russia during the 2016 presidential election.
The indictment was issued by a federal grand jury working with John Durham, the special counsel tapped by the Trump administration to audit the Russia investigation. Sussmann is accused of knowingly making a false statement to the FBI.
Durham is investigating whether Michael Sussmann, a former federal prosecutor and a lawyer at Perkins Coie, lied to the FBI regarding who — if anyone — he was representing when he tipped off the Bureau about communications between the Trump Organization and the Kremlin-connected Russian bank Alfa Bank.
The indictment states that Sussmann lied to top FBI lawyer James Baker in a meeting on September 19, 2016. In that meeting, Sussmann presented data and analysis from cybersecurity researchers who suspected the Trump Organization was using a secret server to communicate with Alfa Bank.
The rumor of a secret server, which was fanned by Hillary Clinton and sympathizers in the press, was ultimately dismissed and never appeared in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s final report.
Durham discovered inconsistencies between Sussmann’s congressional testimony to congress and his conversation with FBI lawyer Baker. “Baker claims Sussman told him he wasn’t working on the Alfa Bank project for any specific client, contradicting his 2017 testimony before Congress, in which he said he was working for an unnamed cybersecurity expert.”
National Review adds, “In addition, Perkins Coie’s internal billing records, which Durham obtained, suggest something potentially more nefarious. Sussmann billed the hours he spent on the Alfa Bank probe to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, suggesting he was fanning the flames of the Russia probe on behalf of the former presidential candidate, another finding inconsistent with his 2017 deposition.”
Sussmann’s lawyers argue that he grouped his Alfa Bank work with the Clinton campaign only for documentation purposes.
The unnamed cybersecurity expert’s new lawyer Steven Terrell also attempted to play defense, saying his client “sought legal advice from Michael Sussmann who had advised him on unrelated matters in the past and Mr. Sussmann shared that information with the F.B.I. on his behalf. He did not know Mr. Sussmann’s law firm had a relationship with the Clinton campaign and was simply doing the right thing,” Tyrell told the Times.
Yet again, irony surrounds Clinton involvement. What are the chances Sussmann billed the 2016 Clinton Campaign for his work on the Alfa Bank probe, but his “unnamed cybersecurity expert” client did not know Sussmann’s firm had a relationship with the Clinton campaign. What a coinkydink.