Records match some Ukraine ledger payments to ex-Trump aide

Washington D.C. [USA], Apr 12: The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) obtained a secret court order past year to monitor the communications of Carter Page, an advisor to President Donald Trump during the election campaign, as part of its investigation of Russia's role in the 2016 presidential campaign. But in order to obtain the FISA warrant, the Post said, law enforcement officials submitted "a lengthy declaration that laid out investigators' basis for believing that Page was an agent of the Russian government and knowingly engaged in clandestine intelligence activities on behalf of Moscow". Officials are now investigating such communications to determine whether the campaign colluded with the Russian government to influence the election in Trump's favour.

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Carter Page was a member of the campaign team, acting as a foreign analyst for Russian matters.

"I did nothing that could even possibly be viewed as helping them in any way", he said. Those contacts had earlier surfaced in a federal espionage case brought by the Justice Department against the intelligence operative and two other Russian agents.

The unverified dossier compiled by former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele and published by Buzzfeed in Janaury also described contacts between Page and Kremlin officials, claims Page dismissed as "ridiculous" in a rare on-camera interview with ABC News in February.

Page, a former investment banker, has not been accused of a crime. A White House spokesman later walked back the comment, saying the US position hadn't changed.

The warrant application cited a 2013 attempt made by a Russian espionage ring in New York City to recruit Page.

The Post reported that a 90-day warrant was issued for Page and has been renewed a few times by the FISA court.


Page, speaking on CNN as the White House scrambled to distance itself from him, insisted that allegations of impropriety during the 2016 United States presidential race were "false evidence against me".

Page, who had previously announced he was willing to testify as part of the House Intelligence Committee's investigation, told the Post he has "nothing to hide".

"There had been prior reports, but I was so happy to hear that further confirmation is now being revealed", Page said. Page said he was in Moscow on a visit to meet with businessmen and politicians.

The application also showed that the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department's national security division have been seeking since July to determine how broad a network of accomplices Russian Federation enlisted in attempting to influence the 2016 presidential election, the officials said.

The revelation provided the most detailed evidence of the FBI's suspicion that the Trump campaign may have been working with Russian agents during the 2016 presidential campaign.

TRUMP: Well, I hadn't thought of doing it, but if you want I can give you some of the names...

One current official told AFP that Page never met Trump, did not have a campaign pass and was only mentioned as an advisor because the billionaire candidate was under pressure to show he had a policy brain trust. One official suggested that Page approached Clovis directly, but multiple sources now say that Lewandowski was the conduit.

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