WASHINGTON – A cellphone owned by Michael Cohen, former attorney for U.S. President Donald Trump, was traced to the Prague area in the Czech Republic late summer of 2016, supporting the Steele dossier’s claims that Cohen met secretly with Russian officials, investigative journalists at McClatchy reported on Thursday.
The report cited four anonymous individuals that gathered their information independently, and two who found that at the same period Cohen pinged the towers in 2016, a nearby intelligence agency heard Russians remark that the lawyer was in Prague.
The new information from McClatchy, previously unreported, gives further legitimacy to the dossier on the Russia-Trump relationship Christopher Steele wrote on in the dossier, which made headlines in January 2017 when Buzzfeed published the document in its entirety.
Trump has dismissed the dossier, a file that includes unverified allegations that Russia has leverage over Trump and described purported coordination between Trump’s presidential campaign and Russia’s election meddling operation.
Special Counsel Robert Mueller, charged with investigating the Russian interference and alleged collusion, has in his possession the intelligence reported by McClatchy, according to the sources.
McClatchy reported in April 2018 that Mueller had obtained evidence Cohen traveled to Prague from Germany in late August or early September of 2016, but it could not be learned how that information was gleaned, the article says.
The new intelligence, while not a “smoking gun” in any way, further adds to the growing evidence that the dossier, and the Russian collusion allegations at large, have at least partial truth in the public space.
Liberal collusion observer Seth Abramson, who wrote a book detailing the connections that attempted to confirm collusion, said that “it’s a good day to be running a Twitter feed based broadly on the accuracy of the Steele dossier”.
Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller’s office, declined to comment about the electronic evidence, McClatchy said.
Cohen has veered from disclosing information about the Mueller probe, to avoid compromising the investigation, and did not respond to a request for comment. He has in the past denied ever travelling to Prague around the time of the cell pings.
The former Trump “fixer” served as Trump lawyer for around a decade and into the White House before he was largely cut off when we appeared to drop his loyalty to Trump and cooperate with Mueller.
Cohen has been cooperating with Mueller’s investigation since he pleaded guilty on Aug. 21 to charges of bank fraud, tax fraud and campaign finance law violations, and later said he was guilt of one count of lying to Congress.
Cohen was sentenced to three years in jail on Dec. 12, but is working with the probe ahead of starting his sentence, scheduled for March 2019. The former lawyer could possibly receive a shorter prison time for continued assistance to the Mueller investigation.
(c)Breaking911 – Eli Ridder