Home / US / Justice Department confirms Trump Jr. and McGahn did not testify for Mueller grand jury

Justice Department confirms Trump Jr. and McGahn did not testify for Mueller grand jury

"The Special Council's reasons remain unknown," Howell wrote. “The reason is not that the individuals were insignificant for the investigation. On the contrary, both of the non-witnessing individuals mentioned in paragraph four were in key events reviewed in the Mueller Report. Evaluating these choices of specialist advice is a matter for others. "

Trump Jr. was present at the now-famous Trump Tower meeting in June 2016, where Trump campaign officials met with the Russians. Prior to that meeting, he also received an "dirt" email from Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

"If that's what you say, I love it," Trump Jr. replied.

A Trump Jr. attorney, Alan Futerfas, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the affirmation that his client never testified.

The Mueller report says Trump Jr. declined a voluntary interview, but several lines following this statement have disappeared.

Attorneys for other witnesses in the probe have said they believe Trump Jr.'s lawyers informed prosecutors that he would assert his Fifth Amendment right to self-incrimination if called to the grand jury and that Mueller's team chose not to force his testimony by asking a judge to grant him immunity.

In April, prior to the publication of the report, one of the president's personal lawyers silenced the speech that Trump Jr. was exercising his constitutional right to remain silent.

"I can say that I have no knowledge that anyone took fifth," Rudy Giuliani said at the time.

Mueller used a large jury to a large extent in the Russian interference section of his investigation, but it appears to have played little role in the investigation into potential obstacles to justice by the president.

In that part of the investigation, witnesses – including many, were interviewed officials at the White House – at Mueller's office. The move was widely considered a courtesy to avoid a potential collision between Mueller's office and the White House.

McGahn's attorney, Bill Burck, told POLITICO on Sunday that there was no need of McGahn to go before a grand jury because he was willing to answer prosecutor's questions.

"Don McGahn went free agrees to be interviewed. There was no need for a grand jury atmosphere, ”Burck said.

McGahn's extensive interviews, totaling approximately 30 hours, provided an important part of the story about several sections of potential obstacles. Finally, Mueller reached no legal conclusion on these cases.

Limiting the use of a grand jury in the probation probe also gave the Department of Justice greater leeway to make that part of the report public with few editorials.

Howell stated in his order last week that Mueller's final report revealed that a person who was very central to the investigation – President Trump – was not interviewed or called before the grand jury. The special counsel considered Trump to be dissatisfied with written answers to prosecutors' questions but chose not to do so, the judge noted.

The document confirming the lack of testimony from Trump Jr. and McGahn is a court statement filed by Deputy Attorney General Bradley Weinsheimer, the Justice Department's highest-ranking career official.

Weinsheimer's statement relates to part of the House-Justice Department's legislation on supporting documents for Muller's report, including dozens of FBI reports describing interviews with key witnesses in both parts of the special probate probe.

In a court filing earlier this month, the Justice Department said the process of sharing so-called 302 reports from the Mueller probe with the house is ongoing. DOJ attorneys said they had not yet turned over summaries of interviews with McGahn, former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, former Trump aide Steve Bannon and former White House communications director Hope Hicks.

The house has received FBI reports of Mueller interviews with other key players, including Chris Christie, Michael Cohen, Corey Lewandowski, Paul Manafort, Rod Rosenstein, Chris Ruddy, Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Sean Spicer.

Kyle Cheney contributed to this report.

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