A former senior FBI official in charge of investigations into Russian oligarchs has just been charged with having been in the pay of one of them while he was employed by the American federal police.
Charles McGonigal, head of FBI counterintelligence in New York from 2016 to 2018, is accused of serving Oleg Deripaska, an aluminum tycoon who was once Russia’s richest man . He is considered an ally of Putin and has ties to Russian organized crime.
The case is embarrassing for the FBI, which is currently conducting politically sensitive investigations into Trump and Biden’s mishandling of secret documents. Republicans in Congress are preparing to open investigations into the organization, accusing it of bias in favor of Democrats.
The Oligarch and the Trump Campaign
Deripaska had business dealings – we are talking about millions of dollars – with Paul Manafort, Trump’s campaign manager in 2016, who are at the center of allegations of Russian interference in the presidential election.
Respected Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Will Bunch reports that Manafort shared key campaign data with a Russian linked to Deripaska.
Late in the campaign, with the polls giving Hillary Clinton a lead, Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani told Fox News that the Republican nominee had “a surprise or two that you’re going to hear about in the next few days.” days. I mean, I’m talking about really big surprises.” Giuliani later boasted of having sources in the FBI.
When FBI Director James Comey revealed an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails that allegedly contained classified information, the New York Times devoted a front-page story to it.
Then citing “intelligence sources,” the Times reported that the FBI could not detect Russian interference in favor of Trump as claimed by Clinton and the Democrats. The two stories were picked up by all of the American media. This information was false. A blow for Clinton.
Will Bunch cites an expert who believes they cost Clinton enough percentage points to keep him from securing an Electoral College majority. US intelligence would later conclude that the Russians had indeed interfered in the election.
McGonigal, the source of Times ?
Who leaked the false information about Clinton and assured the New York Times that Russia was not trying to help Trump win the election?
Bunch wonders if it was McGonigal who misled America’s most influential news outlet.
Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s investigation of the FBI’s New York office lasted four years and failed to find the source of the leaks.
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