Published: Wed, May 02, 2018
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Mueller questions for Trump probe possible obstruction

Mueller questions for Trump probe possible obstruction

Mueller is leading the investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election and if there were any ties between Moscow and Trump campaign associates.

President Donald Trump has slammed the disclosure of special counsel Robert Mueller's questions for him, calling the leak "disgraceful".

There are questions about Mr Trump's 2013 beauty pageant visit to Moscow (featured prominently in the now infamous "Steele dossier"), his involvement with any Russian real estate deals during the presidential race, his son-in-law's attempts at back-channel contacts with the Russian government, his former adviser's contacts with Wikileaks and his knowledge of any outreach by campaign aides "to Russia about potential assistance to the campaign".

The Times said Mueller's team read the questions over the telephone to Trump's legal team, which compiled them into a list.

In other words, roughly a third of Mr Mueller's questions cut right to the heart of the investigation into possible ties between Mr Trump's team and Russian Federation. Trump has also accused Comey of leaking classified information.

The questions range from Trump's motivations for firing FBI Director James Comey last May to contacts Trump campaign officials had with Russians.

FILE - In this photo taken on November 8, 2016, Kremlin-linked lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya speaks to a journalist in Moscow.

The newspaper refused to comment on how reporters "obtained" the information, but published the "tantalizing" questions ahead of a possible meeting between Mueller and the President. The younger Trump says the attorney had no such political dirt on Clinton.

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President Trump speaks during a Cabinet meeting at the White House in March.

But there is no indication Trump is now an official suspect of the year-old probe, or that Mueller has found evidence Trump colluded with the Russians, which Trump on Tuesday again denied, as he has done repeatedly.

Whether Mueller and his team will actually get to ask Trump any questions is an open question.

Trump's casual lie about the nature of Mueller's questions illustrates why his legal advisers think it's risky for the president to sit down for an interview with the special counsel.

Trump's attorneys have discussed the possibility of an interview with the prosecutors, but no agreement has been reached.

Mr. Trump has said the probe is a "witch hunt" and has called for it to end.

Trump incorrectly claimed there were no questions on the list about collusion, which he dismissed as "a made up, phony crime".

He followed that tweet up with this one - a variation on a theme: "It would seem very hard to obstruct justice for a crime that never happened!"

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