Former Hillary Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann has been found not guilty of lying to the FBI about working for a client when he first brought the agency thumb drives that allegedly contained data connecting Donald Trump to Russia’s Alfa Bank. These were instrumental in the Russiagate collusion narrative that later followed.
This verdict is a major blow for Special Counsel John Durham and his investigation, as Sussmann was the first person to be brought to trial.
Of the 16 witnesses called on behalf of the prosecutors, the most high-profile was then-FBI General Counsel James Baker, who told the jury he was “100 percent confident” that Sussmann had insisted he was not working on behalf of a client.
Prosecutor Deborah Brittain Shaw began her case against Sussmann by saying, “We are here because the FBI is our institution that shouldn’t be used as a political tool for anyone — not Republicans, not Democrats, not anyone.”
Durham is expected to bring to trial another case later this year.