The author of the recent report that described unverified information about President-elect Donald Trump’s alleged ties to Russia and activities in the country went into hiding, The Telegraph reported.
Former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele prepared the 35-page dossier on Trump and his associates that contained unconfirmed information which allegedly could have been used to blackmail the New York billionaire.
A source close to Steele told The Telegraph on Wednesday night that Steele now fears a dangerous backlash against him from Moscow as a result of the report he produced. Anti-Trump Republicans originally financed his opposition research against Trump, but Democrats picked up the funding later on.
According to The Telegraph, Steele, the co-founder of the London-based Orbis Business Intelligence Ltd, had been leaking information to journalists about what he said he had learned from his sources in Russia about Trump’s supposed connections with the Kremlin, as well as making claims that Russian intelligence had compromising information about Trump during the New Yorker’s time in the country.
President-elect Trump called the allegations against him in the report Wednesday “fake news” and went after CNN and BuzzFeed for pursuing and publishing Steele’s report.
“I think it was disgraceful, disgraceful that the intelligence agencies allowed any information that turned out to be so false and fake out there,” Trump said.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper claimed in a statement that he did not think the US intelligence community leaked the document.
“I emphasized that this document is not a US Intelligence Community product and that I do not believe the leaks came from within the IC,” Clapper said.