WaPo: Erik Prince, Seychelles Meeting Possible Kremlin Back Channel

The Washington Post first reported that Mueller has gathered evidence that the secret meeting in Seychelles was an attempt to establish a back channel between Russian Federation and the incoming Trump administration.

A witness, who has been cooperating with Mueller, told investigators the meeting was set up before the inauguration so someone from Trump's transition team could meet with a Moscow emissary, WaPo's report notes, which relies exclusively on unnamed sources.

"I don't think this impairs the credibility of the Mueller probe", Napolitano said on "America's Newsroom".

Prince said he went to the Seychelles as a private businessman, not as an official or unofficial emissary of the Trump transition team.

If the meeting was indeed an effort to establish a secret line of communication with the Kremlin, that would be "at odds" with what Prince told to the House intelligence committee in November, Schiff said. In fact, Prince-founder of the security firm Blackwater and brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos-testified to a House panel about it a year ago.

Prince could not be reached for comment.

While there is no indication that Nader is suspected of wrongdoing, his knowledge of key meetings involving the Emiratis and others could be helpful to the special counsel in understanding the inner workings of the transition and possible efforts to influence key figures in the administration.

The Seychelles meeting would not be the only reported effort by Trump associates to set up a secret line of communication with Russian Federation.

GOP members of the committee have been pressing to bring the panel's Russian Federation investigation to a close and issue a report that Democratic members are not likely to endorse.

Prince was interviewed as as part of several ongoing congressional investigations into the matter of Russian election interference. He added that the panel is waiting for Prince to provide documents to the committee they had requested. Trump unpopularity dragging down two vulnerable California Republicans The Hill's 12:30 Report FBI flagged Moscow-connected Russians attending Trump inauguration: report MORE (R-Calif.) at his Virginia home later this month.

Conaway refused to say Thursday whether the committee would or had scheduled any interviews beyond Lewandowski's. Democrats, meanwhile, accuse Republicans of trying to stifle the investigation to protect the president. If that name rings a bell, it's because the New York Times just reported on Nader, and on how Mueller is interested in whether the UAE-yes, the nation Prince was meeting with on business-tried to "buy political influence" with the incoming Trump administration.

Schiff also says there are "large categories of documents" that need to be subpoenaed, including Roger Stone's communications, as well as Donald Trump Jr.'s communications with WikiLeaks.

  • Rogelio Becker