In March 2019 the Special Counsel Robert Mueller completed his 22 months’ investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 US presidential election and possible collusion between president Donald Trump and Russia. He then submitted the report to the Attorney General and the US Justice Department has been preparing it for a public release this Thursday ever since. Here is the timeline of what has been done in these 22 months.
US Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appoints Robert Mueller, former FBI Director, as a special counsel to investigate Russia’s role in the US election. The appointment is followed by firing of FBI Director James Comey. Later this year Mueller indicts former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort on charges of conspiracy against the US and money laundering. George Papadopoulos, former Trump campaign adviser, pleads guilty to a charge of lying to the FBI about his contact with Russia. Trump’s first national security adviser, Michal Flynn, also pleads guilty to lying to the FBI about discussions with the Russian ambassador to Washington in 2016.
13 Russian individuals and three companies, including the Internet Research Agency, are accused of tampering in the presidential race. According to Mueller, the accused “had a strategic goal to sow discord in the US political system, including the 2016 US presidential election”.
Manafort and Gates are charged with financial crimes. Gates plead guilty to conspiracy against the US and lying to investigators.
The first person to be sentenced in Mueller’s probe, Alex van der Zwaan, is put to jail for 30 days and fined $20 000 for lying to investigators. Konstantin Kilimnik, a Manafort business partner, and his Amerrican partner Samual Pattern are charged with witness tampering and unregistered lobbying for pro-Kremlin political party in Ukraine respectively. Manafot is found guilty of tax fraud, bank fraud, and failure to disclose a foreign bank account.
Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen’s home, hotel room, and office are raided by FBI agents. Later Cohen is sentenced to three years in prison for crimes including orchestrating hush payments to women in violating of campaign laws before the election.
Roger Stone, Trump associate, is charged, arrested and accused of lying to Congress. Cohen makes a statement that Trump is a “racist’, a “con man” and a “cheat” and testifies that Trump directed negotiations for a project in Russia during his campaign even though it was publicly announced that he had no business interests in Russia. Manafort is sentenced to four and then 3 and a half more years in prison, fined $50 000, and ordered to restitute over $24 million.
Mueller submits his report to US Attorney General William Barr. Barr releases summary of the report, saying the investigation did not establish conspiracy, and prepares redactions of the entire report for a public release on 18 of March.
Natalia Veselnitskaya – official website