The FBI reportedly conducted a raid and search of Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort‘s home in connection with the investigation into alleged ties between the campaign team and Russian officials.
It is unclear at this time how significant the records taken from Mr Manafort’s home in the pre-dawn 26 July raid are to the investigation, according to the Washington Post.
The FBI came to his home after Mr Manafort had voluntarily met with the Senate Intelligence Committee behind closed doors the day prior.
He was there to discuss a meeting he attended in June 2016 with Donald Trump Jr, White House aide and Ivanka Trump’s husband Jared Kushner, and a Russian lawyer with ties to the Kremlin, Natalia Veselnitskaya.
Special prosecutor Robert Mueller worked with the FBI on the wide-ranging search warrant obtained prior to the search.
As former FBI special agent Asha Rangappa pointed out on Twitter, to get the search warrant the FBI had to present evidence to a federal judge showing they had probable cause that Mr Manafort committed a crime and that evidence of it could be in his home.
It is the first instance in the parallel FBI, Congressional, and special prosecutor investigations where a federal judge has been involved.
It also appears to signal that Mr Mueller and the FBI did not trust the former campaign chairman to turn over all relevant records, even after a grand jury subpoena had been issued for him to do so.
some of which are reportedly notes from the June 2016 meeting with Ms Veselnitskaya at Trump Tower in New York.
The President’s namesake son appears to have taken the meeting in order to gain information about opponent Hillary Clinton’s alleged financial ties to Russia according to a string of emails he released himself.
Mr Trump and surrogates have defended the meeting, noting that it was simply “opposition research” any political campaign personnel would have done. No information seems to have been gleaned from the meeting and Ms Veselnitskaya said she only discussed how Russia stopped adoptions of children by US citizens.