Mueller Probe Turns Attention To Conspiracy Theorist Linked To Roger Stone
- Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team is meeting again with Jerome Corsi, the conspiracy theorist who has ties to Trump confidant Roger Stone.
- Mueller is reportedly interested in whether Corsi and Stone had advance knowledge of Wikileaks’ release of Clinton campaign emails prior to the 2016 election.
- Days before being subpoenaed in the investigation, Corsi called Mueller part of a “criminal coup d’etat.”
The special counsel’s investigation turned its attention to Jerome Corsi, a conspiracy theorist who has ties to Roger Stone, the longtime Trump confidant who is said to be a target of the Mueller probe.
Corsi’s significance to the investigation was solidified this week after he appeared for a second round of interviews with the special counsel’s office.
Guest hosts of Corsi’s online political show said this week that Corsi informed them that he was traveling to Washington, D.C. “for another round with Mueller.”
It is unclear whether Corsi is a target in the investigation, though ABC News reported on Wednesday that the former Infowars correspondent is set to appear Friday before a grand jury being used for the special counsel’s probe. (RELATED: Mueller Witness: Investigation Is Focused On Roger Stone, Assange)
Mueller is reportedly interested in whether the 72-year-old Corsi had advance knowledge that Wikileaks was set to release Clinton campaign manager John Podesta’s emails.
NBC reported on Oct. 25 that Mueller is investigating whether Corsi passed information about the impending release to Stone. NBC’s anonymous sources also claim Mueller is investigating communications indicating Corsi and Stone appeared to take credit for the release of Democrats’ emails.
Stone, who served as an on-again-off-again adviser to Trump, has denied any wrongdoing. He says he did not have advance knowledge of the hacks of DNC and Podesta emails and that he and Corsi never claimed to know that Podesta’s emails had been hacked.
“[Corsi] never told me anything of the kind, that anybody had heisted Podesta’s emails,” Stone told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
One focus of investigators is an Aug. 21, 2016, tweet in which Stone wrote: “Trust me, it will soon be the Podesta’s time in the barrel.”
Stone says he was referring to a memo that Corsi wrote laying out work that the Podesta Group, the lobbying shop founded by John and Tony Podesta, had done with the same Ukrainian political party that one employed then-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.
Stone, who met Corsi in 2015, has also testified to Congress that he learned that Wikileaks would release information damaging to the Clinton campaign from Randy Credico, a left-wing comedian and radio host who had direct contact with Assange. Stone was also forwarded an email on July 25, 2016, in which Fox News reporter James Rosen claimed that Wikileaks was planning to release information about the Clinton Foundation in September 2016. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Roger Stone Says Wikileaks Claim Was Based In Part On Reporter’s Email)
At least 11 Stone associates, including Corsi, have been interviewed or summoned by the Mueller team. Former White House strategist Steve Bannon was reportedly interviewed by Mueller on Friday about Stone’s contacts with the campaign. Stone’s former social media guru, Jason Sullivan, told The Wall Street Journal that Mueller’s team is focused heavily on Stone. He said prosecutor’s contacted his attorneys in late October about his former employer.
Corsi, who is perhaps best known for pushing “birther” conspiracy theories about President Barack Obama, first emerged as a player in the Mueller saga on Sept. 5, when it was reported that he had been subpoenaed by the special counsel.
Corsi has not spoken publicly about his involvement in the Mueller investigation. But during his last appearance on his webcast, he was heavily critical of the probe, going as far as accusing Mueller of being a part of a “criminal coup d’etat” against Trump.
“I don’t think Mueller has anything new that will prove Russian collusion. I just don’t see it,” Corsi said on the show, which aired Aug. 31.
WATCH: Jerome Corsi web show, Aug. 31
He noted that Stone was predicting that he could be indicted by Mueller.
“I’m not sure what for,” said Corsi, who spend much of his career at the far-right website, WND.
Corsi also expressed doubt that the Russian government was behind the hacks of DNC emails.
“The Russians did not steal the emails. They were stolen by Seth Rich,” he said, echoing the unfounded conspiracy theory that Rich, a DNC staffer who was murdered in July 2016, stole emails from the DNC.
Corsi also denied having contact with Assange. At one point, Corsi went into a lengthy explanation about why he did not contact the Wikileaks founder during the campaign.
“If the intelligence agencies had a target they were after, anybody who talked to that target then came under investigation,” Corsi said, adding that during the campaign he decided he was “not going to contact Julian Assange because the minute I do so I’m going to be under investigation by a dozen intelligence agencies.”
“I’m still not going to contact him. Never have and have no intention of doing so,” he said, adding that “I could see coming down the road this Russian collusion fantasy.”
Corsi called on President Donald Trump to pardon Assange at one point during the webcast.
NBC and ABC did not provide details of what evidence Mueller might have on Corsi and Stone. But his tweets from around the time of Wikileaks’ releases provide no indication that Corsi had prior knowledge of the group’s plans. In some tweets Corsi criticized Assange and doubted that the Wikileaks founder would follow through with the release of documents he had hyped throughout the summer of 2016.
“If Assange has the goods on Hillary, he ought just to drop the goods,” Corsi wrote on Oct. 2 following Assange’s cancellation of a scheduled announcement. “Otherwise, he’s going to make a fool of himself.”
If Assange has the goods on Hillary, he ought just to drop the goods https://t.co/v0mmNbtJEa Otherwise, he’s going to make a fool of himself
— Jerome R. Corsi, Ph.D. (@jerome_corsi) October 2, 2016
“So Assange made a fool of Himself,” he wrote in a tweet on Oct. 4, 2016. “Had zero, or he would have released it. Will take grassroots on Internet to get truth out & beat Hillary.”
So Assange made a fool of Himself. Had zero, or he would have released it. Will take grassroots on Internet to get truth out & beat Hillary
— Jerome R. Corsi, Ph.D. (@jerome_corsi) October 4, 2016
Wikileaks began releasing Podesta’s emails days later, on Oct. 7, 2016.
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