Prosecutors Admit That They Wrongly Alleged Russian Woman Was Trading Sex For Access [Updated]


In a remarkable and disturbing concession, the Justice Department last week admitted that it actually has no evidence that accused Russian operative, Maria Butina, was trading sex for jobs or access.  Prosecutors now say that they simply had mistaken joking texts for real offers of sex quid pro quos.  If there was not ample leeway given prosecutors under defamation law, this would seem like libel due to a lack of sense of humor . . . or worse. Update: The Court has imposed a gag order on counsel.

 

 

 

For weeks, prosecutors made sure to fuel stories of an attractive Russian spy ensnaring older men with sexual favor.  Now, the Justice Department admitted in a court filing that that they had been “mistaken” in interpreting what joking emails as serious offers.

Butina’s lawyers have been lashing out against the Justice Department for spreading a sexist “honeypot” narrative.

The mistake by the Justice Department is concerning because it is hard to see how even the absence of scintilla of a sense of humor would lead to the earlier conclusion.  It was based on a joking exchange with a longtime friend who has taken Butina’s car in Russia to get her insurance renewed.  He wrote her “I don’t know what you owe me for this insurance[.] They put me through the wringer.” She jokingly responded “Sex. Thank you so much. I have nothing else at all. Not a nickel to my name.”

She later wrote “Ask for anything,” adding: “That they hire you?” to which her friend responded “Think of something!! Sex with you does not interest me.”

No one would reasonably or mistakingly read that exchange as a serious offer of sex for anything. However, statements in court come with privilege protections in torts. Moreover, the Justice Department makes it exceedingly difficult to force the disclosure of internal  deliberations under other claimed privileges.  The result is a lack of real deterrent against prosecutors using filings to destroy reputations as part of the pressure against targets.

The chilling element of this story is how the Justice Department can — and has — gone out of its way to destroy people in the media.  Richard Jewell and others can attest to that history.  Yet, there is no indication of any discipline or sanction for this gratuitous attack.

 

66 thoughts on “Prosecutors Admit That They Wrongly Alleged Russian Woman Was Trading Sex For Access [Updated]”

  1. Let me be the first to actually address the subject of JT’s post: I agree that it is outrageous that the DOJ can float a sexist and highly degrading allegation about a person, then quietly retract it without any legal consequences. In this day and age of the “Me Too” movement, it is especially troubling that Mueller’s team would be so willing to float an especially sexist and insulting assumption, that this young woman is nothing more than a “honey pot” put in place to entrap old men. There was no evidence of such, and if the accused were a 29 y/o Russian man, it is virtually certain that they wouldn’t have made that “mistake.”

  2. Looks like some Prosecutors are in line for a career change. No common sense in that PC group. I hope the Lady is well compensated.

  3. One has to wonder the number of innocent Americans harmed by the DOJ, the FBI and the IRS during the eight years of the Obama presidency. Let us be thankful President Trump is determined to investigate the criminal activities of Obama, his high officials, and Obama’s “deep state” operatives undermining his agenda. We know Bob Woodard of the ‘Washer-woman’ Post exposed his intentions in his ‘lying-through-his-teeth’ crapola wannabe “Wattagaite” (as the long-gone notorious weed-puffer Bob Marley would say) novel.

    Shame on us for being so foolish!

    1. tons, nothing new, the feds have solved a lot of real crimes but have also persecuted a lot of political ones. they have wrecked a lot of lives. this time the Republicans get their ox gored, but, it’s time to put a leash on such nonsense for the benefit of all going forwards

    2. dont put it all on Obama. He was a less powerful politician than Republicans now pretend.
      Seems to me Kerry was more in step with Obama than Hillary was. Hillary and that clique was comparatively more powerful, and her clique was often operating on their own outside his weak oversight. I think history will show that she was almost operating rogue at times. I am developing evidence for this hypothesis, but I think there is some strategic misdirection at Obama, who was very unpopular, which the Hillary crowd has tolerated because it takes the heat of Hillary’s failures.

      I think the “Deep State” is and has been saturated with the cancerous Arkansas Clinton mafia for too long, going back to Slick Willy’s time, implants stuck in place ever since, who strategically went along with all the Bush war stuff, and probably, Obama was very careful to avoid crossing them.

      Roll back and you can see that in 2013 there were people ginning up war with Syria under Obama, and now it’s much the same. That’s what they mean when they say Deep State and MIC and all that. Permanent security appratchiks that have their own agenda no matter what “democracy” says

      https://www.wbai.org/articles.php?article=1424

      12 U.S. Intelligence Officials Tell Obama It Wasn’t Assad
      – New York 09/07/2013 by Linda Perry Barr
      Russian President Vladimir Putin insists that the use of chemical weapons in Syria was by rebels and not by the Syrian President. He warned the U.S. that Russia would give Syria military support if America attacks. President Obama insists that the chemical weapons used on Syrians was by the Assad regime. Despite his “high confidence,” a dozen former U.S. military and intelligence officials tell Obama they’re picking up information that undercuts the Official Story. What follows is a post by a CIA veteran who says Syria could very well be a trap. Here’s an excerpt of his letter to the President:

      Posted on September 7, 2013 by WashingtonsBlog
      Cross-Posted from WarIsACrime.org ; originally posted at Consortiumnews.com

      By Ray McGovern, a 27-year CIA veteran, who chaired National Intelligence Estimates and personally delivered intelligence briefings to Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, their Vice Presidents, Secretaries of State, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and many other senior government officials

      MEMORANDUM FOR: The President

      FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)

      SUBJECT: Is Syria a Trap?

      Precedence: IMMEDIATE

      We regret to inform you that some of our former co-workers are telling us, categorically, that contrary to the claims of your administration, the most reliable intelligence shows that Bashar al-Assad was NOT responsible for the chemical incident that killed and injured Syrian civilians on August 21, and that British intelligence officials also know this. In writing this brief report, we choose to assume that you have not been fully informed because your advisers decided to afford you the opportunity for what is commonly known as “plausible denial.”

      The Intelligence

      There is a growing body of evidence from numerous sources in the Middle East — mostly affiliated with the Syrian opposition and its supporters — providing a strong circumstantial case that the August 21 chemical incident was a pre-planned provocation by the Syrian opposition and its Saudi and Turkish supporters. The aim is reported to have been to create the kind of incident that would bring the United States into the war.

      According to some reports, canisters containing chemical agent were brought into a suburb of Damascus, where they were then opened. Some people in the immediate vicinity died; others were injured.

      We are unaware of any reliable evidence that a Syrian military rocket capable of carrying a chemical agent was fired into the area. In fact, we are aware of no reliable physical evidence to support the claim that this was a result of a strike by a Syrian military unit with expertise in chemical weapons.

      In addition, we have learned that on August 13-14, 2013, Western-sponsored opposition forces in Turkey started advance preparations for a major, irregular military surge. Initial meetings between senior opposition military commanders and Qatari, Turkish and U.S. intelligence officials took place at the converted Turkish military garrison in Antakya, Hatay Province, now used as the command center and headquarters of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and their foreign sponsors.

      Senior opposition commanders who came from Istanbul pre-briefed the regional commanders on an imminent escalation in the fighting due to “a war-changing development,” which, in turn, would lead to a U.S.-led bombing of Syria.

      At operations coordinating meetings at Antakya, attended by senior Turkish, Qatari and U.S. intelligence officials as well as senior commanders of the Syrian opposition, the Syrians were told that the bombing would start in a few days. Opposition leaders were ordered to prepare their forces quickly to exploit the U.S. bombing, march into Damascus, and remove the Bashar al-Assad government

      The Qatari and Turkish intelligence officials assured the Syrian regional commanders that they would be provided with plenty of weapons for the coming offensive. And they were. A weapons distribution operation unprecedented in scope began in all opposition camps on August 21-23. The weapons were distributed from storehouses controlled by Qatari and Turkish intelligence under the tight supervision of U.S. intelligence officers.

      Cui bono?

      That the various groups trying to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have ample incentive to get the U.S. more deeply involved in support of that effort is clear. Until now, it has not been quite as clear that the Netanyahu government in Israel has equally powerful incentive to get Washington more deeply engaged in yet another war in the area. But with outspoken urging coming from Israel and those Americans who lobby for Israeli interests, this priority Israeli objective is becoming crystal clear.

      Reporter Judi Rudoren, writing from Jerusalem in an important article in Friday’s New York Times addresses Israeli motivation in an uncommonly candid way. Her article, titled “Israel Backs Limited Strike Against Syria,” notes that the Israelis have argued, quietly, that the best outcome for Syria’s two-and-a-half-year-old civil war, at least for the moment, is no outcome. Rudoren continues:

      “For Jerusalem, the status quo, horrific as it may be from a humanitarian perspective, seems preferable to either a victory by Mr. Assad’s government and his Iranian backers or a strengthening of rebel groups, increasingly dominated by Sunni jihadis.

      “‘This is a playoff situation in which you need both teams to lose, but at least you don’t want one to win — we’ll settle for a tie,’ said Alon Pinkas, a former Israeli consul general in New York. ‘Let them both bleed, hemorrhage to death: that’s the strategic thinking here. As long as this lingers, there’s no real threat from Syria.’”

      We think this is the way Israel’s current leaders look at the situation in Syria, and that deeper U.S. involvement – albeit, initially, by “limited” military strikes – is likely to ensure that there is no early resolution of the conflict in Syria. The longer Sunni and Shia are at each other’s throats in Syria and in the wider region, the safer Israel calculates that it is.

      That Syria’s main ally is Iran, with whom it has a mutual defense treaty, also plays a role in Israeli calculations. Iran’s leaders are not likely to be able to have much military impact in Syria, and Israel can highlight that as an embarrassment for Tehran.

      Iran’s Role

      Iran can readily be blamed by association and charged with all manner of provocation, real and imagined. Some have seen Israel’s hand in the provenance of the most damaging charges against Assad regarding chemical weapons and our experience suggests to us that such is supremely possible.

      Possible also is a false-flag attack by an interested party resulting in the sinking or damaging, say, of one of the five U.S. destroyers now on patrol just west of Syria. Our mainstream media could be counted on to milk that for all it’s worth, and you would find yourself under still more pressure to widen U.S. military involvement in Syria – and perhaps beyond, against Iran.

      Iran has joined those who blame the Syrian rebels for the August 21 chemical incident, and has been quick to warn the U.S. not to get more deeply involved. According to the Iranian English-channel Press TV, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javid Zarif has claimed: “The Syria crisis is a trap set by Zionist pressure groups for [the United States].”

      Actually, he may be not far off the mark. But we think your advisers may be chary of entertaining this notion. Thus, we see as our continuing responsibility to try to get word to you so as to ensure that you and other decision makers are given the full picture.

      Inevitable Retaliation

      We hope your advisers have warned you that retaliation for attacks on Syrian are not a matter of IF, but rather WHERE and WHEN. Retaliation is inevitable. For example, terrorist strikes on U.S. embassies and other installations are likely to make what happened to the U.S. “Mission” in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2012, look like a minor dust-up by comparison. One of us addressed this key consideration directly a week ago in an article titled “Possible Consequences of a U.S. Military Attack on Syria – Remembering the U.S. Marine Barracks Destruction in Beirut, 1983.”

      For the Steering Group, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity

      Thomas Drake, Senior Executive, NSA (former)

      Philip Giraldi, CIA, Operations Officer (ret.)

      Matthew Hoh, former Capt., USMC, Iraq & Foreign Service Officer, Afghanistan

      Larry Johnson, CIA & State Department (ret.)

      W. Patrick Lang, Senior Executive and Defense Intelligence Officer, DIA (ret.)

      David MacMichael, National Intelligence Council (ret.)

      Ray McGovern, former US Army infantry/intelligence officer & CIA analyst (ret.)

      Elizabeth Murray, Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Middle East (ret.)

      Todd Pierce, US Army Judge Advocate General (ret.)

      Sam Provance, former Sgt., US Army, Iraq

      Coleen Rowley, Division Council & Special Agent, FBI (ret.)

      Ann Wright, Col., US Army (ret); Foreign Service Officer (ret.)

      1. very false. Obama was hardly weak. He’s a criminal who had the power to stab in the back Israel which is America’s closest ally and has a special relationship as quoted by many leaders in America. Any person who had that kind of pull to stab in the back America’s closest ally has huge power within whatever political complex. Obama’s ideas were bad ideas. There was nothing weak about his power and if anything he could of saved Hillary from the email scandal if he wanted to. He never put his neck out for her and let the FBI try to fix things but never went public and really supported Hillary, As it so happens most of the people in Obama’s administration were avoiding government emails because they were unethical and untransparent and were avoiding FOIA requests. James Comey himself was guilty of this on five different occasions for example. Had Obama said that he needed Hillary to have her own server he might of taken the heat a little for a bad idea, but he’d have more power now.

        1. i dislike Obama. However I do not know at all what you mean about stabbing Israel in the back. The Iran threat was exaggerated. Many Israelis did not share and do not share the opinion of Netanyahu on the subject. The Syria chemical attack was most likely a false flag. He stepped back from at least a litle bit of the ill advised expansion of war in respect of both adjacent adversaries of Israel. that was good for the US and Israel is just fine in the meantime.

          Compared to the Clinton clique, Obama was weak. He had a thin career as a lawyer, organizer, and politician. he owed a lot of his rise to powerful people, some of which were in the Clinton orbit, and some who were not. He could not have won against her without help from a lot of people out there in Dem circles who probably recognized Hillary would be a loser. And when she got her chance, after screwing Bernie over, she lost.

          Anyhow i don’t know if he protected her or not. I wonder. I do think that the right is imagining that he is behind the “stay behind networks.” there are clearly democrat and deep state saboteurs but I don’t see any evidence at all that they work at Obama’s behest. Mostly he seems to have just retired.

          He was certainly not our worst President, but certainly not a hero as he was been lionized by the fools on the left.

          Obama is not a ball in play anymore. Don’t waste energy denouncing him. He’s not worth it and there is action elsewhere.

  4. BUTINA UPDATE: MONDAY AFTERNOON

    JUDGE ORDERS CONTINUED DETENTION

    A federal judge on Monday blasted U.S. prosecutors and defense attorneys during a hearing in which the defense sought to have a Russian woman set free on bail pending trial on charges she was a foreign agent attempting to infiltrate the National Rifle Association and other American conservative groups .

    In ordering continued detention for Maria Butina, 29, U.S. District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan said Butina remained a serious flight risk.

    Chutkan also imposed a gag order after slamming prosecutors for their mistaken claim in court filings that Butina traded sex for access, and her defense for repeated public statements that the judge said could bias potential jurors.

    Butina has pleaded not guilty after being indicted July 17 on charges of conspiracy to act and failing to register as an agent of a foreign government. Her defense said she was merely networking to develop relationships with Americans. She is jailed in Alexandria, Va.

    Edited from: “Judge Orders Accused Russian Agent Maria Butina To Remain In Jail”

    This afternoon’s WASHINGTON POST

  5. He failed to properly investigate the anthrax incident, ruined innocent life.
    He let innocent men stay in Jail in Boston to protect whitey bulger too.
    That’s all I need to know about wonderful Bob Meuller.

    But I suspect his career had a few more scabbed over, pus-filled abscesses like that, and he is looking now to add a huge whopper to the list as his capstone achievement as a persecutor.

  6. There is a constant anti-Russian strategizing at CIA and by the English Crown’s spooks as well,

    Perhaps the reason is not anything that has to do with Trump in the end, it is a matter of enduring geopolitical rivalry.

    Even ideologies themselves can come down to geography… over centuries and millenia. Think back to the Pelopennessian wars. There is a curious resemblance on some levels to the liberality of the trading Empire of ancient Athens and its rivalry with “authoritarian” land power Sparta which somewhat lives on today in the century of Anglo-American wars against “authoritarian” land powers in Europe and Asia.

    Eventually the land power Sparta prevailed. Partly through, irony of ironies, use of Persian silver to equip a navy.

    In the Anglo-American wars against Germany, obviously, the sea power prevailed.

    One’s tempted to apply a similar comparsion to Rome and Carthage. Of course in that conflict, the land power Rome prevailed.

    If the comparison is not apt to Russia, perhaps it will be apt, before long, against conflict with China?

    https://www.silkroadstudies.org/resources/pdf/Monographs/1006Rethinking-4.pdf A Russian writes

    Atlantacists have their own version with a different outcome

    http://online.sfsu.edu/andrei/Research/JES%20Heartland%20Nov11.doc

  7. I must have missed the switchover from this being Turley’s legal blog to being L4D’s personal shrine to Mueller.

  8. WHETHER SHE WAS TRADING SEX OR NOT..

    MARIA BUTINA IS A VERY SUSPICIOUS YOUNG WOMAN

    The 29 year Russian ‘student’ seemed to make it her business to befriend as many politically-connected Republicans as possible. Among her new ‘friends’ was Paul Erickson, 56, a South Dakota businessman and Republican operative who invited Butina to his home state.

    Butina traveled to South Dakota where she lectured students at two local colleges about the importance of gun rights. The trip was curious in the sense that Butina was only a student herself at the American University in Washington. One has to wonder why she felt the need to make a trip to South Dakota. Was Mr. Erickson that important to her?

    Below is a link to Rapid City Journal, a South Dakota newspaper. The tone of the article questions why Butina traveled there. Were she and Mr. Erickson such dear friends?

    https://siouxcityjournal.com/news/state-and-regional/south-dakota/russian-charged-with-conspiracy-has-ties-to-south-dakota/article_a491bccf-da4f-5f57-b521-ee2cbdc60ccd.html

    1. RECENT FOX NEWS STORY QUESTIONS BUTINA’S ACTIVITIES IN U.S.

      Article notes that Butina tried to organize a Russian version of the NRA. But the Putin government was rather cold to the idea of a gun-owner’s lobby. Butina eventually abandoned her efforts at home and enrolled at the American University in Washington.

      Yet once in the U S, Butina was more concerned with meeting well-connected Republicans than pursuing her university studies. During the 2016 election year, Butina made a point of showing up at a number of functions attended by American conservatives. In Nashville, Butina met presidential candidate Donald Trump, among others.

      Butina’s travels and studies in the U S were sponsored by a Russian billionaire. Which makes one seriously question the true purpose of their agenda. ‘Why was this 29 year old, presumably just a grad student, attending Republican-related functions all over the U S?’ Was Butina’s dedication to gun rights really that passionate?

      http://www.foxnews.com/world/2018/09/10/misfire-maria-butinas-strange-route-from-russia-to-us-jail.html

      1. But if Butina was just a grad student in Washington, why was she traveling all over the U S and showing up at Republican-Conservative events? Does that sound logical for a 29 year old who is presumably just a student?

        And why has the judge ordered Butina’s continued detention?

        1. yes there are such things as young republicans.

          part of the “vast right wing conspiracy” hillary was talking about

            1. you never seen a foreigner at a dem event or rally? I seen a lot of them

              well sorry charlie but republicans can have some foreign friends too.

            2. Leftist Noam Chomsky mocks the Russophobia narrative below. HE called it a JOKE. Noam Chomsky, do you get it yet? Noam is surely not a supporter of DJT. You guys are suckers.

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HT72YFDcf1M

              Why are the focusing on the one reasonable, justifiable, point of Trumps’ program? the One ray of light? Why indeed, good questions.

              (Though I think that rather it is the MOST reasonable point of Trumps’ program, not the only one. I don’t consider myself a progressive, nor a democrat, but I share the concerns about war.)

  9. Late4Yoga trying to defend the indefensible DOJ abuse of priocess/power. We can all she she is posting ramblings that nobody reads (9 so far!). 14 days for George P and now DOJ admission of abuse of process = wheels coming off of Muler investigation (and Late4Yoga psyche). Bartender is turning lights on and off signalling last call for alcohol at the Bob Muler Pub. Drivel safely, call an Uber if you don’t have designated driver.

  10. Slightly off topic: Mueller offers Trump an open-book take-home test with private tutors known as lawyers looking over his shoulder and breathing down his neck for the sake of avoiding the dread perjury trap. Will Trump take the test? Will Trump pass the test? Will Trump lawyers submit Trump’s written answers to Mueller’s question? What does Turley think?

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/04/us/politics/mueller-trump-russia-investigation.html

    1. Excerpted from the article linked above:

      Mr. Mueller will accept written answers from Mr. Trump on questions about whether his campaign conspired with Russia’s election interference, Mr. Mueller’s office told the president’s lawyers in a letter, two people briefed on it said on Tuesday [September 4th].

      On another significant aspect of the investigation — whether the president tried to obstruct the inquiry itself — Mr. Mueller and his investigators understood that issues of executive privilege could complicate their pursuit of a presidential interview and did not ask for written responses on that matter, according to the letter, which was sent on Friday [August 31st].

    2. Miller is not a teacher and the president the student

      Rather Trump is the President of the university and miller is a rogue teacher in need of being fired.

      1. Congratulations on your great success at refuting a mere metaphor. You may now be ready to try your hand at refuting an actual, fact-based argument. But before you do, you’d better double-check your shoe-laces to make sure that they’re properly tied so that you won’t trip over the both of yours tongues in the process.

  11. As long as there is a Russian behind every tree and under every rock, Sessions will continue to have no control over his agency. If the AG goes through the confirmation process and is deemed fit for the job, doesn’t that fitness presume he will faithfully do the job and set aside any political bias in the performance of his duties? Then why should he need to recuse himself?

    1. Sessions is busy with the following important priorities:

      1- confusing everyone by saying he will enforce federal pot laws that are now being ignored by numerous states and tens of thousands of people following state laws permitting it;

      2- restarting oppressive asset forfeiture spoils programs with local police, sponsored by feds,

      3– ginning up deportations of thousands of decent, law abiding foreigners with minor defects in their papers, even as he continues to fail to deport tens of millions of illegal immigrants with none

      4– letting a coup d’etat meander through “his” department will he looks aside from the witch hunt

      Too bad, his name is now dirt to all

  12. How about General Flynn? And Carter Page? ANd maybe even Papadopoulos … a name no one would know except for a Justice Department investigation that has gone absurd. It is operating as the Smear campaign of the century. Meanwhile we have yet to see action against DOJ officials Ohr, McCabe, Stztruck, and even Comey for clear abdication of duty and targeting of innocent individuals, etc.

    1. Communications intercept excerpted from the document linked above:

      2. Butina Was Considered a Covert Russian Agent by the Russian Official

      FBI agents have also discovered messages between Butina and the Russian Official in which the Russian Official likened Butina to one member of a ring of Russian covert agents who were arrested in 2010. Specifically, in March 2017, after a series of media articles were published about Butina, the following conversation ensued:

      Russian Official: Good morning! How are you faring there in the rays of the new fame?[] Are your admirers asking for your autographs yet? You have upstaged Anna Chapman. She poses with toy pistols, while you are being published with real ones. There are a hell of a lot of rumors circulating here about me too! Very funny!

      Butina: It is curious that only our liberal media published the translation of the article. Yesterday I was pressing for an interview to Komsomolka but they are silent. It was probably our [people] that stood up for me.

      Russian Official: I only saw it in the Echo [of Moscow] Blog and on the InoSMI site. What do you expect from the liberals anyway?!

      Butina: It’ s the other thing that is important: evidently, there is an Order not to touch us. I believe it is a good sign.

      Russian Official: For now — yes, but should things shift, then we are guaranteed a spot on the list of ‘agents of influence.” …

      Butina: It’s better to keep a low profile now. For some time. You probably got in trouble because of that nasty leak? Sorry. …

    2. More communications intercepts from the document linked above:

      The Twitter direct messages between Butina and the Russian Official also contain multiple references to Butina acting covertly, such as the following exchange, from October 5, 2016, after the Russian Official asked about the status of the “Russia — USA friendship society”:

      BUTINA: It’s not alive. We are currently “underground” both here and there. Now, private clubs and quite [sic] influence on people making decisions is the trend. No publicity.

      BUTINA: Advisor — is the profession of the current day. Even a secret advisor. Right now the Administration here is flexible — and there is the idea, so that the right thoughts would dominate.

      The following exchange occurred just a week later, on October 12, 2016:

      BUTINA: Don’t do that! Take it easy on yourself. Important things are ahead of us!

      RUSSIAN OFFICIAL: In this sense, you probably shouldn’t be going as an [election] observer from Russia. The risk of provocation is too high and the “media hype” which comes after it.

      BUTINA: I agree! I did not even plan on it without you! Only incognito! Right now everything has to be quiet and careful.

      1. just a foreign national talking about social influence. guess what? foreigners have first amendment freedoms here too. they can try and boost opinions of their home among americans. In fact most foreigners try and put on a good face. there is nothing illegal in that. zilch. zed, nada, zzzzz if an Irishman said this would there be an indictment?

        Democrats: hospitable as hell to 30 million illegal immigrants, but throw the Russians out, or rather, lock em up!

        1. Mariia Butina committed visa fraud for the express purpose of concealing her role as a covert agent of the Russian Federation. Had she registered with the Attorney General, then her political activities would have been both legally permissible and closely monitored–not to mention that her contacts would have been duly informed of her status as a registered agent of the Russian Federation. There’s a reason that covert agents of a foreign power commit visa fraud and fail to register with the Attorney General so that they won’t be monitored and their contacts informed. Mariia Butina belongs in jail.

          1. L4Yoga enables David Benson, R. Lien and Marky Mark Mark – kinda sounds like Slick Willy Clinton when he went to England as a grad student.

            1. Do you have any evidence that Bill Clinton was spying on The Brits for the CIA while posing as a student in England? Do you have any evidence that Bill Clinton communicated with US government officials to file progress reports on his spying efforts in England? If not, then your understanding of argument by logical analogy is more superficial than logical. Cazart!

              1. L4Yoga enables David Benson, R. Lien and Marky Mark Mark – what we do know is that Clinton was dodging the draft and not going to classes.

                1. Well why were the induction officers staking out Clinton’s classes at Oxford? I think you’re just making stuff up.

                  1. L4Yoga enables David Benson, R. Lien and Marky Mark Mark – you’re a fair to middling researcher, you can look it all up.

    3. Consider the communications intercepts posted above and ask yourself if Mariia Butina is something other than a covert agent for the Russian Federation. Then reconsider the complaint lodged by Turley that, “If there was not ample leeway given prosecutors under defamation law, this would seem like libel due to a lack of sense of humor.” Really? So the Russian Official communicating with Butina was just joking about Anna Chapman. Right. Russian humor is so droll. Isn’t it?

        1. On the topic of Russians’ droll sense of humor from Wikipedia:

          Sergei Viktorovich Skripal (Russian: Серге́й Ви́кторович Скрипаль, IPA: [sʲɪrˈɡʲej ˈvʲiktərəvʲɪtɕ skrʲɪˈpalʲ], born 23 June 1951) is a former Russian military intelligence officer who acted as a double agent for the UK’s intelligence services during the 1990s and early 2000s. In December 2004, he was arrested by Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) and later tried, convicted of high treason, and sentenced to 13 years in prison. He settled in the UK in 2010 following the Illegals Program spy swap [See: Anna Chapman].

          On 4 March 2018, he and his daughter Yulia, who was visiting him from Moscow, were poisoned with a Novichok nerve agent.

    4. One last excerpt from the government’s motion linked upstream for those of you who don’t know who Anna Chapman is:

      The FBI believes that in this communication, the Russian Official was referring to Anna Vasilyevna Chapman, a Russian intelligence agent who gained notoriety after being arrested in the United States in 2010. At the time of her arrest, Chapman was accused of acting on behalf of the Russian Federation’s external intelligence agency, the Sluzhba vneshney razvedki (SVR). Chapman pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to act as an agent of a foreign government and she and the other Russians were deported to Russia on July 8, 2010, as part of a Russia — U.S. prisoner swap.

      1. Skirpal prolly poisoned by British intelligence itself with a bit of dry wit and English humor.

        Russians could have killed him in custody if they wanted to, why bother.

        Whereas, he was a disposable asset, in country, easily blamed on the Russians by the British who most certainly have their own stores of Novachuk.

        I can’t prove it but apparently neither can the Crown! Oh they say they have evidence

        https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/sep/05/salisbury-poisonings-police-name-and-charge-two-suspects

        but take a closer look at some of the evidence

        http://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/09/a-curious-timestamp-in-the-new-novichok-evidence.html

        some prosecution that will be… oh wait, kind of like with Meuller, the Crown can’t arrest them, so there will be no trial! Just a PR exercise against the Russians in a constant effort to demonize them

        Not that they are angels, of course not; but step back from the constant agitprop, lickspittle mass media, please!

        1. HoD said, “Russians could have killed him in custody if they wanted to, why bother.”

          Putin was not in power in 2010. Putin came back to power in 2011. Try to keep up, HoD.

        2. From the Wikipedia article on Sergei Skripal:

          “While living in Britain [Skripal] had travelled to former Communist countries, meeting with intelligence officials of the Czech Republic and Estonia, most likely discussing Russian spying techniques. In June 2016 he travelled to Estonia to meet local spies, and it was later reported that he had links to Christopher Steele, the author of the Steele dossier.”

          BTW, Medyevev pardoned Skripal in 2010 immediately prior to the prisoner swap. Also, Putin came back to power in March of 2012. In any case, Skripal was working for The Brits. And that’s why Russia poisoned Skripal. It’s also why The Brits didn’t poison Skripal. Ergo, Mr. Kurtz is a polezni durak.

                1. I wasn’t sure which word meant “useful” and which word meant “idiot.” But I think I catch the drift, now. Thanks Dr. Benson.

        3. Polezni Durak said, ” . . . step back from the constant agitprop, lickspittle mass media, please!”

          What was so important about Anna Chapman and the nine other Russian spies she was arrested with that Medyevev pardoned Skripal and three other Russian double agents to exchange in a prisoner swap for Anna Chapman and her comrades? Why would the Russian official communicating with Mariia Butina applaud her “social networking activities” by exclaiming that Butina had surpassed Anna Chapman? Did you know that there was, in fact, a legally permissible way Mariia Butina to have engaged in political activities in the United States as a registered agent of influence for the Russian Federation? Did you also know that registered agents of influence for foreign powers have their political activities closely monitored and the people they contact are duly informed of that agent of influence’s role as an agent of influence? If Mariia Butina is harmless, then why didn’t she register with the Attorney General as an agent of influence? And why did she conceal her connections with the Russian government and its officials on her visa applications?

          1. Repeated for emphasis from the government senting memo on Mariia Butina linked upstream from here:

            Butina: It’ s the other thing that is important: evidently, there is an Order not to touch us. I believe it is a good sign.

            Russian Official: For now — yes, but should things shift, then we are guaranteed a spot on the list of ‘agents of influence.” …

            Butina: It’s better to keep a low profile now. For some time. You probably got in trouble because of that nasty leak? Sorry. …

            And there you have a Russian Official telling Mariia Butina that she has to avoid being placed on the Attorney General’s list of agents of influence. She promises that Russian Official to do so. And that makes Mariia Butina a Russian spy of the exact same type as Anna Chapman and her comrades. The notion that Butina, like Chapman before her, was also a “social butterfly” flitting about from one Republican flower to the next Republican flower in no way whatsoever refutes the intercepted communications evidence proving that Mariia Butina was a Russian spy.

            Did you know that Anna Chapman is said to have alit upon a Democratic flower who promptly reported her “social butterfly routine” to the FBI?

            I have to tell you, if any of you Trump Troupers were really paying attention, then you’d surely want to know why there was an “Order” not to touch Mariia Butina and exactly how Butina and the Russian Official found out about that “Order.”

          2. Here’s an interesting tidbit from the sentencing memo filed by Mariia Butina’s lawyer, Driscoll:

            The elements of a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 951 are that (1) the defendant acted in the United States as an agent of a foreign government; (2) that the defendant failed to notify the Attorney General of the United States that she would be acting in the United States as an agent of a foreign government prior to so acting; and (3) that the defendant acted knowingly, and knew that she had not notified the attorney general.

          3. 18 USC 951 edited and excerpted from the link above

            (a) Whoever, other than a diplomatic or consular officer or attaché, acts in the United States as an agent of a foreign government without prior notification to the Attorney General if required in subsection (b), shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

            [edit]

            (d) For purposes of this section, the term “agent of a foreign government” means an individual who agrees to operate within the United States subject to the direction or control of a foreign government or official, except that such term does not include—
            (1) a duly accredited diplomatic or consular officer of a foreign government, who is so recognized by the Department of State;

            (2) any officially and publicly acknowledged and sponsored official or representative of a foreign government;

            (3) any officially and publicly acknowledged and sponsored member of the staff of, or employee of, an officer, official, or representative described in paragraph (1) or (2), who is not a United States citizen; or

            (4) any person engaged in a legal commercial transaction.

            (e) Notwithstanding paragraph (d)(4), any person engaged in a legal commercial transaction shall be considered to be an agent of a foreign government for purposes of this section if—
            (1) such person agrees to operate within the United States subject to the direction or control of a foreign government or official; and

            [edit]

  13. This is at best an example of confirmation bias in investigation and at worst…well our current weaponized justice department.

  14. top marks for remarks as usual Paul. I will add it wouldn’t seem such a joke if they took turns with the butt of the joke wearing orange for that pre the same amount of days. .

    That prosecution or investigation or whatever it’s calling itself these days seems to be in everything except that which it was charged directly or by inference.

    Which was Russia Connection Candidate Collusion and the wide latitude infers ‘and if not or if evidence of others that fill that description arises go after the correct culprit or suspect.

    I swear it’s a miracle they don’t understand their job as well as any average street cop whose been through the academy, observed one court session and two shift changes.

  15. And yet we have people on this blog who think Mueller and his team walk on water. As a sidenote, there was a study in the long past that the longer you were a prosecutor or a defense attorney the more prosecutorial or defense minded you became. I have become convinced that we should switch to the British system where one day you prosecute and the next you defend. Except for Rumpole, of course. 😉

    1. “And yet we have people on this blog who think Mueller and his team walk on water.” They learned to believe and accept that from their lefty loon comrades on MSNBC & CNN who chant “Bob Muler is beyond reproach!”

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