Trump dossier source shocked speculation presented as fact

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A Russian-born analyst who provided the bulk of the information from a flawed dossier on the former president donald trump told an FBI agent he was shocked and dismayed that the speculative information he provided was presented as fact, an agent said Thursday.

FBI agent Kevin Helson is the second bureau employee to testify in the trial of Igor Danchenko, who is accused of lying to the FBI about his own sources for information he passed on to British spy Christopher Steele .

The “Steele dossier” contained numerous allegations about links between Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and the Kremlin, as well as allegations of salacious sexual activity Trump allegedly engaged in at a Moscow hotel.

Prosecutors say Danchenko should have been more open about his own sources and if he had, the FBI would not have treated the case with as much credulity as it did. It turned out that the FBI used the allegations in the dossier to obtain a surveillance warrant against Trump campaign staffer Carter Page.

Helson, however, offered largely positive assessments of his interviews with Danchenko when cross-examined by Danchenko’s lawyers. In this regard, Helson’s testimony mirrored that of the FBI’s first witness, analyst Brian Auten, which contradicted the prosecution’s theory that Auten had fabricated interactions with one of his supposed sub-sources, Sergei Millian. .

Helson served as Danchenko’s handler from 2017 to 2020, a period during which Danchenko was a paid “confidential human source” for the FBI.

Helson said Danchenko said from the start that the information he gave Steele was just rumor and speculation, and he had no ability to corroborate it.

He also said Steele appeared to tell the FBI in the months after the dossier leaked and caused a media frenzy that Danchenko’s supply was stronger than Danchenko had ever claimed.

“Steele was really trying to prove it (the case), even during that time, because he wanted it to be true. And that put pressure on Danchenko,” Helson said.

Danchenko is being sued by special counsel John Durham, who was appointed by then-Attorney General William Barr to investigate any misconduct in the FBI’s investigation into the Trump campaign and its alleged ties to Russia. Danchenko is the third person to be sued by Durham. It is the first of the Durham cases that delves deep into the origins of the dossier, which Trump has called fake news and a political witch hunt.

Durham’s other two cases resulted in an acquittal and a guilty plea with a sentence of probation.

In Danchenko trial, prosecutors say he lied when he told the FBI he got some of his information from an anonymous phone call from a man he believed to be Millian, a former chief of the Russian-American Chamber of Commerce.

Prosecutors say Danchenko never spoke with Millian and phone records show he never received an anonymous phone call at the time Danchenko claimed it happened.

They also say Danchenko lied when he told the FBI he never “spoke” with a man named Charles Dolan about the allegations in the file.

Defense attorneys say Danchenko received a call, possibly via an internet app, from someone he honestly believed was Millian, and was being honest when he said he never “spoke” with Dolan about the information in the file because their relevant exchanges were by e-mail.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *