Donald Trump Jr.'s meeting with Russian lawyer

Leigh Vogel  WireImage

Leigh Vogel WireImage

"I said, connected like as into the power grid?"

"To the best of my knowledge, he was [there throughout]", Goldstone said of Kushner.

Goldstone went on to relay that the Washington Post was reporting that the FBI was investigating the meeting.

And Goldstone himself said he thought he was bringing a "smoking gun" to the Trump team, even if he believed the meeting was a "bad idea". "And I gave the reason for that being that I am a music publicist". "Emin just called and asked me to contact you with something very interesting".

"This was the most embarrassing thing you've ever asked me to do", he said he told him. "You just have to get the meeting, '" Goldstone recalled.

In a late November 2016 email to Trump's assistant, Goldstone attached a three-page document marked "confidential" that called for "the launch of a congressional investigation into the circumstances of passing the Magnitsky Act".

Trump Jr. has maintained that Veselnitskaya did not have any information to share and instead wanted to discuss other matters, such as the Magnitsky Act which enacts sanctions on certain Russian officials as punishment for human rights violations. "I am just a Russian lawyer". In short, I wish I had not spent five hours of my day going through them, but alas, here we are. Minutes after that call, he called Agalarov back.

The meeting at Trump Tower in NY with Natalia Veselnitskaya included Trump Jr., Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. Trump has minimized assertion of intelligence services on Moscow's efforts to help him become president, has denied any coordination with Russian Federation, and has claimed to suffer a "witch-hunt". Agalarov told Goldstone the lawyer was "well-connected". In addition, the Judiciary Committee released brief notes from the meeting that Manafort took on his phone, and written answers to its questions from Veselnitskaya.

Didn't Trump Jr. publish the emails about the meeting?

Trump Jr. initially agreed to the meeting because Goldstone said a Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, had "dirt" on Hillary Clinton, Trump's election opponent.

But the meeting ultimately ended up being about the adoption of Russian children by American couples, which Moscow blocked in response to Washington's sanctions passed by USA lawmakers in the Magnitsky Act.

In addition to Trump Jr., the committee interviewed four other people who attended the meeting in NY - publicist Rob Goldstone, who set up the meeting with the promise of dirt on Clinton; Rinat Akhmetshin, a prominent Russian-American lobbyist; Ike Kaveladze, a business associate of a Moscow-based developer, and a translator. "I don't know what that was about".

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"The Russian effort was extensive, sophisticated, and ordered by President Putin himself for the goal of helping Donald Trump and hurting Hillary Clinton", the Democrat who competed against Trump for the presidency.

Donald Trump one point "asked if they got anything on Hillary", according to Ike Kaveladze, an executive at the Agalarov-owned real estate company.

"I appreciate the opportunity to have assisted the Judiciary Committee in its inquiry", Trump Jr. said Wednesday in a statement released by a spokesman. "What was the "it" that you loved in that e-mail?"

So did Trump Jr. break the law?

Q: "Potential incriminating information on Hillary Clinton?"

Trump Jr. said he didn't recall, and dismissed a followup question about whether such support from Russian Federation would be "problematic".

Q. "Did you understand that that would be problematic?"

Thousands of pages of congressional testimony were released by the US senate committee following a probe into Trump Tower meeting between US President Donald Trump's son and Russians.

Schiff said Trump Jr. invoked the privilege because his lawyers claimed that the discussion with his father took place in the presence of legal counsel, which Schiff and other Democrats argued is a situation not covered by the privilege.

Phone records show that Donald Trump Jr. called a blocked number before and after calls with Agalarov arranging the meeting and again on the night of the meeting.

Almost six months later, he was again asked to contact the Trumps and attempt to secure another meeting with Veselnitskaya.

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