What Is a ‘Proactive Cooperator’?

By Adam Serwer

Did George Papadopoulos wear a wire?

On Monday, the former Trump campaign foreign-policy aide pleaded guilty to lying to federal agents investigating alleged Russian interference into the 2016 presidential election. Papadopoulos had been offered “dirt” on Trump’s Democratic rival Hillary Clinton from an unnamed professor believed to have Russian connections, and sought to set up a meeting between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Although both efforts were unsuccessful, they represent the second alleged offer of Russian assistance to Trump officials—the first being Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting in Trump Tower with individuals he believed were linked to Moscow and had derogatory information on Clinton.

The special counsel investigation is being led by former FBI Director Robert Mueller, who was appointed by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. The inquiry is examining potential collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government in what American intelligence agencies have said was an attempt by the Kremlin to sway the 2016 election in Trump’s favor. The special counsel is also reportedly looking into whether the president himself sought to obstruct the investigation.  

Although the plea was unsealed Monday, Papadopoulos was arrested at Dulles Airport on July 27. The next day, in the motion to seal the filings associated with his arrest, the office of the special counsel argued that “public disclosure of the defendant’s appearance” would “significantly undermine his ability to serve as a proactive cooperator.”

“I assume that means he wouldn’t be able to wear a wire and trick a target of the investigation into making incriminating statements, because his cooperation would then be known,” said Bruce Green, a former associate counsel in the Iran-Contra affair and a Fordham Law School professor.

That phrase, “proactive cooperator,” is what implies that between the moment of his arrest and the …read more

Via:: The Atlantic


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