Report: Mueller’s Team Collected Personal Cell Phones From Witnesses
Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team has collected witnesses’ personal cell phones to examine encrypted messages sent through apps, according to CNBC Thursday.
Agents believe encrypted messages sent through WhatsApp, Confide, Signal and Dust could contain conversations that were previously inaccessible to them, anonymous sources told CNBC.
Witnesses in Mueller’s Russia probe feared a subpoena and began handing over cell phones as early as April. The news comes on the heels of the special counsel indicting Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort, claiming he used encrypted messaging to contact witnesses and “conceal evidence.”
It’s unknown whether investigators have collected any valuable information from the phones, and Mueller’s office declined to comment to CNBC.
Mueller’s team has been investigating alleged collusion between Russian officials and Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign since May 2017 — a probe President Trump has labeled “unconstitutional” and a “witch hunt.” Trump has repeatedly denied cooperating with Russia during the election. (RELATED: ‘Greatest Witch Hunt In Political History!’ — Trump Slams ‘SPYGATE’ In New Tweets)