“Special Counsel John Durham just filed this motion in response to the efforts of Hillary for America, Fusion GPS, et al. to keep secret (by use of the attorney-client and work product privileges) communications involving Fusion GPS. You can read it here.
Durham states the “purported privilege holders who have intervened do so in a case in which the defendant has denied representing any client when he brought the Russian Bank-1 allegations to the FBI.” The privilege controversy thus entraps Sussmann to a certain extent, seemingly precluding his denial that he was working on behalf of a client. Brilliant.
Additionally, Durham casts doubt on the declaration of Marc Elias that Fusion GPS was retained to provide “legal advice.” Here he makes a key point:
”…if rendering such advice was truly the intended purpose of Fusion GPS’s retention, one would also expect the investigative firm to seek permission and/or guidance from [Hillary for America] or its counsel before sharing such derogatory materials with the media or otherwise placing them into the public domain.”
In support of that point, Durham states he is in possession of “hundreds of emails in which Fusion GPS employees shared raw, unverified, and uncorroborated information – including their own draft research and work product – with reporters.” (He even filed them under seal with the court.) These include:
- Emails with Slate’s Franklin Foer from May 14, 2016 in which Fusion GPS conveys information on a Trump advisor and Alfa Bank.
- July 26, 2016 e-mails from Fusion GPS to the Wall Street Journal communicating allegations from Christopher Steele stating “a Trump advisor meeting with a former KGB official close to Putin … would be huge news.”
- July 29 and July 31, 2016 emails with a reporter (Washington Post’s Tom Hamburger) concerning Carter Page’s investments and meetings with Russians – of which the reporter said “Its bullshit.”
- July 27, 2016 e-mails between an ABC News reporter (Matthew Mosk) and Fusion GPS concerning Sergei Millian. Fusion GPS responded with a “comprehensive report” regarding Millian.
- Fusion GPS communications with NY Times reporters pushing more dirt on Millian.
- This e-mail from a Fusion GPS co-founder to the New York Times – dated October 31, 2016 – pushing the Alfa Bank allegations and stating the US Government is investigating. (Timeline editor’s note: this date is also the first time Hillary and Podesta tweet about Trump Russia collusion.)
Here are e-mails between Franklin Foer and Fusion GPS, in which they discuss going after Carter Page in May 2016.
As Durham makes clear, no lawyers are copied in these e-mails and this doesn’t have anything to do with legal advice. And even if there were some type of privilege or work product, it was waived when Fusion GPS distributed the info to the press.” (Read more: Techno Fog/Substack, 4/25/2022) (Archive)