CNN obtains draft of Mueller docs on Trump ally Stone

Draft court filings obtained by CNN outline significant insights into what special counsel Robert Mueller may know about Roger Stone's efforts to seek documents from WikiLeaks in 2016.

Posted: Nov 28, 2018 12:36 PM
Updated: Nov 28, 2018 1:00 PM

Draft court filings obtained by CNN outline significant insights into what special counsel Robert Mueller may know about Roger Stone's efforts to seek documents from WikiLeaks in 2016.

Mueller's office was preparing to tell a federal court that Stone pushed an associate to get documents from WikiLeaks -- information that is now known to be stolen from the Democrats by Russian hackers -- that could help the Trump campaign, according to a draft of a court filing and other documents shared with CNN by Stone associate and conservative author Jerome Corsi.

Corsi said he received the drafts, mostly dated this month, as part of his negotiations with Mueller's team regarding a plea of making a false statement to federal investigators. According to Corsi and the documents he provided, prosecutors offered him a plea deal, which Corsi says he plans to reject because he doesn't believe he knowingly lied.

In one of the draft court filings shared with CNN on Monday, the special counsel's team outlined how Stone, who is only identified as Person 1, allegedly sought the information and emails from WikiLeaks using at least one person, Corsi, as a go-between. Corsi confirmed to CNN that Stone is Person 1.

Mueller spokesman Peter Carr declined to comment on the draft documents. The authenticity of all documents could not be confirmed immediately by CNN, though the draft court filings regarding the possible plea agreement match the format, structure and language of all other plea deal cases opened by the Mueller team in DC federal court.

It is not known how many changes remained to be made to the draft documents. Such information is normally not released until filed in court.

Three alleged lies outlined

In the draft court papers, prosecutors outline how Corsi allegedly lied three times to the FBI and special counsel's office. He told them he rebuffed Stone when Stone asked him to reach out to Wikileaks; he denied that Stone asked him to involve another person in the effort; and he denied he shared information about what Wikileaks had.

In the summer of 2016, Stone allegedly asked Corsi to get in touch with WikiLeaks "about materials it possessed relevant to the presidential campaign that had not already been released," according to the draft filing. "Get to [Assange]," Stone wrote on July 25, 2016, three days after Wikileaks dumped thousands of Democratic National Committee emails. According to the documents, Stone directed Corsi to get in touch with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, was blasting publicly the documents stolen in the Russian hack, and "get the pending [Wikileaks] emails."

Corsi then passed that request on to Ted Malloch, a London-based consultant. Malloch said he spoke to the FBI this year and said was asked specifically if he had visited the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. He had not, he said. Stone also said he has never met Assange.

Malloch did not respond to a request for comment on this report.

By August 2, 2016, Corsi was emailing Stone to predict that WikiLeaks had more document dumps in the works. Stone has said he spoke with Trump the following day, August 3.

"Word is friend in embassy plans 2 more dumps. One shortly after I'm back. 2nd in Oct. Impact planned to be very damaging," Corsi wrote, according to the draft document. "Time to let more than [the Clinton Campaign chairman] to be exposed as in bed w enemy if they are not ready to drop HRC [Hillary Rodham Clinton]. That appears to be the game hackers are now about. Would not hurt to start suggesting HRC old, memory bad, has stroke -- neither he nor she well. I expect that much of next dump focus, setting stage for Foundation debacle."

Stone has not been charged publicly, nor have their other contacts or WikiLeaks. But the documents made public Tuesday are the strongest signal yet that Stone could be charged with a crime. Several other contacts of Stone's have testified before a federal grand jury in DC, according to CNN's reporting.

If Stone were to be charged with a crime for seeking the stolen documents, others who discussed with him reaching WikiLeaks could also face legal risk in a criminal conspiracy case or if they attempted to shield information from Congress, the FBI, prosecutors or the grand jury.

"Like every politico and political reporter in America I was curious about what (WikiLeaks) had," Stone said on Tuesday. But he said his interaction with Corsi, as laid out in the draft filing, "certainly does not prove that I had advanced notice that anyone had stolen Podesta's emails or that I knew the source or content of the WikiLeaks disclosures."

Stone confirms emails

Aside from Corsi, the draft documents don't identify the players by name. Stone is referred to as "Person 1" by the prosecutors. CNN determined it was Stone through interviews and correspondence matching the emails described in the filings. CNN determined the "overseas individual" was Malloch based on previously released correspondence between Corsi, Stone and Malloch. Prior government statements as well as CNN's reporting, context clues and correspondence between Stone and Corsi indicate that "Organization 1" in the filings is WikiLeaks.

Stone has confirmed the accuracy of the emails between him and Corsi that are revealed in the draft filings. He has also confirmed that Malloch was the individual in London with whom Corsi spoke.

Twelve Russian military intelligence members were charged by Mueller in July for hacking the DNC. None have appeared in US to enter a plea. At that time, Mueller outlined a portion of communications the alleged hackers had with Stone and Wikileaks under the guise of their hacker identity Guccifer 2.0.

The information in that filing was the last known discussion from the Justice Department of the hackers' contacts with Americans -- and it stopped far short of describing how Americans may have discussed approaching the hackers' spoils behind the scenes.

The filings made public Tuesday make no claim that Stone or other Americans knew the hackers were affiliated with the Russian government.

All of the communications between Stone and Corsi, as described in the draft court filing, would have taken place after WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange announced in June 2016 that his organization had materials about Clinton and would be releasing documents before the election.

By March 2017 -- after US intelligence agencies had pinned the blame on Russia for hacking the Democrats and using WikiLeaks to disseminate stolen material -- Corsi had deleted all of his emails prior to October 11, 2016, prosecutors allege in the draft filing.

As part of his proposed plea agreement, Corsi would have admitted to only one criminal charge with two components -- lying to investigators and obstruction of justice before congressional or grand jury proceedings.

Corsi's lawyer, David Gray, in a letter to prosecutors, said the radio host feared losing his securities license if he pleaded guilty to a criminal charge under seal and did not reveal it to regulators. Gray also said that Corsi would not be sentenced for "some time."

In the draft agreement, the special counsel's office does not seek for Corsi to cooperate extensively like it has with other defendants. However, prosecutors had made a deal with him two months earlier that he would speak with Mueller's office and testify before the grand jury -- and not lie during either situation.

So far, Mueller has spoken to dozens of witnesses, including campaign and administration officials, in a similar way to Corsi in September. The special counsel's office has charged four people with lying to investigators. Two, the former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos and the Dutch lawyer Alex Van Der Zwaan, were sentenced to prison. Former Trump campaign deputy Rick Gates and former national security adviser Michael Flynn have pleaded guilty and continue to cooperate with investigators on multiple ongoing investigations.

Corsi's lawyer also outlined how Corsi had not reviewed the emails the special counsel's office had before he did the September interview in which he allegedly lied. "The issue is that the statements that Dr. Corsi made were, in fact, the best he could recall at the time," Gray, his attorney, wrote on November 21 to special counsel's office prosecutor Aaron Zelinsky. Corsi amended his statements to the prosecutors and provided them with access to his computers and phones, Gray wrote, but prosecutors still sought to charge him with lying.

Gray and another attorney at his law firm have not responded to CNN's requests for comment on Tuesday.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 501097

Reported Deaths: 9990
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34338538
DeSoto32117403
Hinds31939628
Jackson24494382
Rankin21995390
Lee15543235
Madison14581280
Jones13851242
Forrest13453251
Lauderdale11991317
Lowndes11050188
Lamar10521135
Pearl River9533237
Lafayette8550140
Hancock7732127
Washington7438158
Oktibbeha7146131
Monroe6777177
Warren6694176
Pontotoc6664102
Neshoba6637206
Panola6531131
Marshall6467134
Bolivar6317148
Union602894
Pike5820152
Alcorn5669101
Lincoln5436135
George496879
Scott472898
Tippah469281
Prentiss467281
Leflore4658144
Itawamba4636105
Tate4588111
Adams4587119
Copiah448592
Simpson4446116
Yazoo444187
Wayne439772
Covington428894
Sunflower4239105
Marion4226108
Coahoma4160105
Leake408288
Newton381779
Grenada3707108
Stone360364
Tishomingo359792
Attala331589
Jasper329965
Winston314291
Clay308076
Chickasaw300367
Clarke292494
Calhoun279446
Holmes267987
Smith264050
Yalobusha234047
Tallahatchie228051
Greene219348
Walthall218763
Lawrence212940
Perry205556
Amite205156
Webster202946
Noxubee186740
Montgomery179656
Jefferson Davis171743
Carroll169138
Tunica159839
Benton148838
Kemper141941
Choctaw133426
Claiborne132737
Humphreys129538
Franklin120228
Quitman106428
Wilkinson105139
Jefferson94534
Sharkey64120
Issaquena1937
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 819597

Reported Deaths: 15406
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1147901924
Mobile725791338
Madison52306697
Shelby37597350
Baldwin37245552
Tuscaloosa35101612
Montgomery34106740
Lee23526246
Calhoun22225488
Morgan20941378
Etowah19825500
Marshall18361304
Houston17384412
St. Clair16054339
Cullman15443293
Limestone15343199
Elmore15241286
Lauderdale14302295
Talladega13836283
DeKalb12649261
Walker11202370
Blount10192176
Autauga10043148
Jackson9871184
Coffee9210191
Dale8897185
Colbert8860201
Tallapoosa7084198
Escambia6772134
Covington6712183
Chilton6641162
Russell636659
Franklin5959105
Chambers5607142
Marion5005127
Dallas4973200
Pike4795106
Clarke475584
Geneva4571127
Winston4516103
Lawrence4321117
Bibb425186
Barbour357776
Marengo338090
Monroe331464
Randolph329764
Butler326396
Pickens316284
Henry312666
Hale311388
Cherokee302860
Fayette292880
Washington251551
Cleburne247760
Crenshaw245275
Clay243368
Macon234663
Lamar224147
Conecuh186153
Coosa180240
Lowndes175164
Wilcox168839
Bullock151644
Perry138840
Sumter133038
Greene126744
Choctaw88527
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