Special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of potential coordination between President Trump’s campaign and Russia has moved into a new phase with the impaneling of a grand jury.
By taking the step, legal experts say, Mueller is indicating that he has found evidence of criminal activity and that the investigation will extend beyond Trump’s fired national security adviser Michael Flynn.
“We don’t know exactly what these developments portend, other than that there’s actually some significant criminal charges being considered,” said Stephen Vladeck, a professor at the University of Texas Law School.
“It is a more serious phase, because it suggests that the special counsel has reached a point where he is up to presenting evidence to a grand jury.”
Mueller, a former FBI director and seasoned prosecutor, appears to be casting a wide net in the probe, with some reports indicating that he is now scrutinizing financial ties between Trump, his business associates and Moscow.
Trump’s lawyers are paying close attention, arguing the investigation should remain narrowly focused on Russian election meddling. The president himself warned last month that looking into his financials would amount to crossing a “red line.”
Trump attorney Jay Sekulow brushed the special counsel back in an interview on Fox News Channel’s “Hannity” on Thursday night, warning that any expansion of the investigation would be met with resistance.
“The mandate says it’s to investigate allegations regarding
Article source: http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/345387-mueller-investigation-enters-new-phase
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