Durham prosecutors provide details of a criminal investigation of the tech executive who worked on Trump and Russia’s back-channel allegations 2022-04-27 20:28:32


Prosecutors said the Durham team was still “looking closely” whether Rodney Joffe, a technology executive and prominent cybersecurity expert, defrauded the US government by misusing internet data from government contracts to search for derogatory information about Trump and Russia. .

“We have not yet been charged with a crime … but we cannot say that no crime was committed,” Prosecutor Andrew DePhillips told a judge on Wednesday, adding that the potential statute of limitations for Joffe’s conduct had not been committed. It has expired and the investigation is still ongoing.

These comments – at a hearing about the upcoming trial of Clinton campaign lawyers Michael Sussman It was the first time the Durham team had set up a public inquiry into Jovi. That means prosecutors are considering new defendants and additional charges as part of their extended investigation into the origins of the investigation between Trump and Russia, now in its fourth year.

Joffe worked on Trump and Russia material with Sussman, the Clinton campaign lawyer who was accused in September of lying to the FBI during a 2016 meeting where he passed the data. Prosecutors allege Sussman falsely told the FBI that he shared the data as a concerned citizen, but that he was actually there on behalf of his clients: the Clinton and Goofy campaigns.

Sussman’s trial is scheduled to take place next month in federal court in the capital. He pleaded not guilty and says he had no reason to doubt the data that came from Joffe and his researchers. The FBI considered Sussman’s advice about a file Possible back channel of the server Between Trump and Moscow-based Alfa Bank, however, no incorrect electronic links were found.

Jovi’s lawyers attack Durham

In response to Wednesday’s hearing, a spokesman for Goofy said recent comments from prosecutors were “baseless and reckless” and accused Durham of pushing “a baseless political narrative through false innuendo” to link Goofy to a supposed anti-Trump plot.

“Mr. Joffe did not defraud or mislead any branch of the US government,” the spokesman said in a statement. “Moreover, the data in question does not belong to the government and does not contain private or personal information about any individual, and has not been tampered with in any way.”

Sussman’s lawyers say Joffe is an essential part of their defense and will provide testimony that helps clear Sussman. Shawn Berkowitz, Sussman’s attorney, accused the plaintiffs of making a “tactical decision” by conducting a criminal investigation of Jovi’s head as a way to prevent him from testifying at trial. Because of the potential criminal exposure, Joffe plans to plead against the V, according to his attorney.

“They’ve been looking at this forever,” Berkowitz said. “They have to be able to make a decision (impose).”

Berkowitz asked federal judge Christopher Cooper to dismiss the case if prosecutors did not grant Joffe immunity to testify. Cooper said Wednesday that he will try to make a judgment soon.

Lawyers representing Jovi He previously told CNN Durham is pushing a carefully curated narrative to make it appear as if Goofy falsified the data to harm Trump and help Clinton get elected. Instead, they said, it was his “national duty to share” the data with the FBI. He and Sussman assert that they passed the data to the US government out of national security concerns.

It has been known for some time that Sussman shared data from Joffe and his researchers with the FBI and later with the CIA after Trump’s inauguration in January 2017. Prosecutors said Wednesday for the first time that the material had subsequently been shared with Congress, we will.

Prosecutors previously said Jovi’s company at the time, Newstar, had access to Internet data through a contract with the Pentagon research agency, DARPA. The goal of the contract was to track down cyber intrusions by hostile nations. Durham said Joffe and his colleagues “exploited” their access to domain name system information to find dirt on Trump.

Some internet data also relates to Russian-made Yota phones which were allegedly located near the Trump campaign headquarters and White House offices. Durham’s previous filings about Yota phones It sparked a frenzy in the right-wing media About the supposed spying on Trump, which led to a reprimand from the judge Partial retraction of the plaintiffs.

A spokesperson for Joffe previously said he is a “non-political Internet security expert with decades of service to the US government” and that his handling of the data was entirely legal. In court filings, Joffe’s lawyers said he received letters of harassment and threats in the wake of Sussman’s indictment, for which he was repeatedly referred to as “Chief Executive Officer.”