Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team is allegedly investigating President Donald Trump’s role in responding to reports about the meeting his advisers had with a Russian lawyer during the 2016 presidential campaign, several news outlets have reported.
NBC News reported Monday that investigators are trying to determine what Trump knew about the meeting and if he tried to hide it purpose. His son, Donald Trump Jr., son-in-law Jared Kushner and then-campaign chairman Paul Manafort were all present at the Trump Tower meeting.
“Even if Trump is not charged with a crime as a result of the statement, it could be useful to Mueller’s team to show Trump’s conduct to a jury that may be considering other charges,” a source told NBC.
The Washington Post reported last month that Trump on July 8 had arranged a statement downplaying the meeting to Hope Hicks, who was the director of the strategic communications at the time. The statement was for his son, Trump Jr., to provide to The New York Times, which first reported about the meeting.
Trump reportedly arranged the statement while returning to the United States from the Group of 20 Summit in Germany. The New York Times reported a day after the statement was released that, through an intermediary, the Russian lawyer had promised harmful information about Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. Trump officials have since said the primary topic of the meeting was Russian adoptions.
According to a NBC News report, Mueller, who was appointed by the Department of Justice to oversee the federal government’s response into Moscow’s 2016 election interference, is investigating whether Trump helped construct a “knowingly false statement.”