Published: Wed, September 20, 2017
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

Trump's Former Campaign Manager Was Reportedly Wiretapped By US Investigators

Trump's Former Campaign Manager Was Reportedly Wiretapped By US Investigators

CNN has learned that USA investigators wiretapped former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. In 2016, the Federal Bureau of Investigation obtained a second warrant because of suspicions that Manafort was acting as an agent of a foreign power.

The sources tell CNN that Manafort was first wiretapped in an FBI investigation into consulting firms' work for Ukraine's former ruling party, but the surveillance was discontinued for a lack of evidence. But the FBI obtained a new FISA warrant that extended at least through early 2017 as part of its investigation into possible contacts between Trump officials and Russian operatives.

Government applications for FISA warrants require information suggesting that the target of the surveillance may be acting as an agent of a foreign power.

Manafort became Trump's campaign manager in June 2016 but was forced to resign two months later amid reports of his business relationship with the Kremlin-backed former Ukrainian leader, Viktor Yanukovich.

Long before joining the Trump campaign, Manfort lived part time in Trump Tower, and the two men reportedly came to know each other "in the lobby and elevators", according to the Washington Post. But again, that is very far removed from the president's claim-yet his allies have already begun spinning it.

Mueller, appointed to lead the Justice Department's investigation, is reportedly aiming to set a tone, having rushed to secure subpoenas and gather intelligence.

According to The New York Times, Manafort has been told Special Counsel Robert Mueller plans to bring an indictment against the president's former campaign adviser.

But about two weeks later, the Federal Bureau of Investigation told reporters who had filed Freedom of Information Act requests that it could neither "confirm or deny the existence of records" pertaining to wiretapping of Trump Tower.

But news that Manafort was wiretapped does not in fact vindicate Trump's claim.

Manafort has denied ever "knowingly" communicating with Russian intelligence operatives during the election, and denied participating in Russia's efforts to "undermine the interests of the United States".

CNN cited multiple sources in its report Monday, but Levin spoke about allegations on his radio show that someone on the Trump campaign team was wiretapped in March.

The feds had wiretapped Manafort before and after the 2016 presidential election, capturing conversations he had with President Trump along with conversations that allude to coordination with Russia, CNN reported. "It appears that during the course of a presidential election, the Obama administration used both intelligence and law enforcement agencies to investigate the Republican nominee's campaign and certain surrogates", Levin said.

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