By Steve Neavling
A prominent cybersecurity attorney who represented Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential election has been charged with lying to the FBI.
A grand jury indicted Michael Sussmann Thursday as part of Justice Department special counsel John Durham’s examination of the origins of the federal investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, The Washington Post reports.
According to prosecutors, Sussmann lied to the FBI in September 2016 by falsely saying he was not representing Clinton’s campaign. At the time, Sussmann told the FBI that cybersecurity researchers were concerned about possible ties between Russia and the Trump organization.
The false statement “deprived the FBI of information that might have permitted it to more fully assess and uncover the origins of the relevant data and technical analysis, including the identities and motivations of Sussmann’s clients,” the indictment states.
Sussmann’s lawyers called the prosecution “baseless and politically-inspired.”
“The Special Counsel appears to be using this indictment to advance a conspiracy theory he has chosen not to actually charge,” attorneys Sean Berkowitz and Michael Bosworth said in a statement. “This case represents the opposite of everything the Department of Justice is supposed to stand for.”
Sussmann is the second person to be charged as part of Durham’s two-and-a-half-year investigation.