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PRESS RELEASE


Senator Grassley Demands Answers: Did FBI Use Intel that Christopher Steele Conduited through British Intelligence?

Oct. 7, 2017 (EIRNS)—Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, with oversight of the FBI, yesterday sent a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray, and issued a press release on the question Grassley calls "alarming": Did "ex"-MI6 agent Christopher Steele, author of the 2016 dossier on Donald Trump and Russia, conduit information to British intelligence, which the FBI could then claim was independent "corroboration" of the Steele dossier against Trump and Russia? Grassley’s latest initiative turns the spotlight on where it belonged all along—British interference in U.S. elections and policy.

Grassley has unsuccessfully sought information related to Christopher Steele, the dossier, and the activity of the FBI, since at least last March, which his letter summarizes. But in the intervening period, Grassley has obtained information from London, where Steele has had to respond in a defamation lawsuit against him. Grassley’s letter states:

"In court filings by Mr. Steele’s attorneys in London, he admitted that he had passed at least some contents of the dossier to at least one foreign government—the United Kingdom."

Grassley continues this thread, "Media reports have also claimed that foreign governments passed along information to the United States about purported contacts between Trump associates and Russians. Given that Mr. Steele also distributed the dossier’s contents to at least one foreign government, it is possible that this political dossier’s collusion allegations, or related allegations originating via Mr. Steele, may have also been surreptitiously funneled into U.S. intelligence streams through foreign intelligence sharing. If so, that foreign information would likely have ended up within the FBI’s investigation of allegations of collusion between Trump associates and Russia. However, given that foreign intelligence agencies carefully guard their sources and methods, it may not have been clear to the FBI that the foreign reporting was actually based on the work of Mr. Steele and Fusion GPS.

"If this in fact happened, it would be alarming. Mr. Steele’s dossier allegations might appear to be confirmed by foreign intelligence, rather than just an echo of the same research that Fusion bought from Steele and that the FBI reportedly also attempted to buy from Steele."

Grassley has accordingly specified the nature of reports he wants the FBI to produce to his Committee, saying,

"The Committee must understand what steps the FBI has taken to ensure that any foreign information it received and used in the Russia investigation, beyond the dossier itself, was not ultimately sourced to Mr. Steele, his associates such as Fusion GPS, or his sub-sources. Please respond to the following by no later than October 18, 2017."

Senator Grassley’s website gives his letter, and press release.