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  Home > America

Trump-Russia: Former Aide Sam Nunberg Defies Mueller Inquiry

Special Counsel Robert Mueller is leading the investigation that hangs over the Trump presidency


 March 6th, 2018  |  11:09 AM  |   546 views



A former aide to Donald Trump says he will not co-operate with the inquiry into alleged Russian election meddling.


Sam Nunberg, who helped launch Mr Trump's campaign, said he would refuse to comply with a grand jury subpoena.


"I think it would be really, really funny if they wanted to arrest me because I don't want to spend 80 hours going over emails," he told MSNBC.


Mr Nunberg also said he thinks the investigators believe they have something on Mr Trump.


Department of Justice Special Counsel Robert Mueller is investigating if there were any links between the Trump campaign and Russia, or any effort by the White House to obstruct justice.


White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders would not be drawn on Mr Nunberg's remarks on Monday, saying: "I'm not going to weigh in on somebody that doesn't work at the White House."


Who is Nunberg?


Sam Nunberg worked on the Trump campaign in 2015 until he was fired in August that year over racially charged Facebook posts.


He was later sued by Mr Trump for $10m (£7.2m) for breach of confidentiality.


The lawsuit was "amicably settled" out of court, a lawyer for the Trump Organization said at the time.


Mr Nunberg told CNN on Monday: "I'm not a Donald Trump fan. He treated me like crap."


'Arrest me'


In a volley of extraordinary interviews with US media on Monday afternoon, Mr Nunberg said he had met with Mr Mueller's team for five-and-a-half hours over the weekend.


He said he had had enough of the investigators' "pretty ridiculous" questions.


Mr Nunberg told CNN they had asked him if he had ever heard Russian spoken around Trump Tower.


"I'm not co-operating. Arrest me," Mr Nunberg said on live television. "You want to arrest me? Arrest me."


He said he would not appear before a grand jury to testify on Friday.


Mr Nunberg rejected any suggestion he himself had colluded with Russians to help Mr Trump win the 2016 presidential election.


'They suspect something'


Mr Nunberg appeared to contradict himself during Monday's television interviews, suggesting that Mr Trump may have "done something", while insisting the president was innocent.


"I suspect that they suspect something about him [Mr Trump]," he told CNN, referring to Mr Mueller's investigators.


Mr Nunberg added: "Trump may very well have done something during the election with the Russians. If he did that, I don't know."


"Mueller thinks that Trump is the Manchurian candidate, and I will tell you I disagree with that," Mr Nunberg told CNN, referring to a 1959 novel about a US politician brainwashed into becoming a pawn of foreign conspirators.


But Mr Nunberg also told CNN's Jake Tapper: "Donald Trump did not collude with the Russians!


"It's the biggest joke to ever think Donald Trump colluded with the Russians."


Trump and Moscow women


Mr Nunberg said he had been told by former Trump bodyguard Keith Schiller that a Kremlin-connected Russian "had offered to send women up to Trump's room" at a Moscow hotel during the 2013 Miss Universe beauty pageant.


But he said Mr Trump "didn't want it".


"Trump is too smart to have women come up to his room," Mr Nunberg said.


Unsubstantiated allegations linking Mr Trump to Russian prostitutes surfaced in a research file that was part of an attempt to dig up dirt on the then-Republican candidate during the 2016 election.


The dossier was compiled by an ex-British spy, Christopher Steele, through a Washington DC research firm that was hired by a conservative website and later by the Clinton campaign.


'He knew' about Trump Tower meeting


Mr Nunberg said Mr Trump was aware at the time of a June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower when a group of Russians offered his campaign staff damaging information about Hillary Clinton.


"You know he knew about it," Mr Nunberg told CNN.


"He was talking about it a week before. I don't know why he went around trying to hide it."


The White House has repeatedly denied Mr Trump knew anything about that meeting.


The Trump Tower encounter appears to have become a focus of the Mueller investigation.



courtesy of BBC NEWS



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