An analyst who worked on the so-called Steele Dossier — the largely unverified collection of documents and photos detailing Donald Trump’s links to Russia — was arrested Thursday on charges that he lied to the FBI.
Igor Danchenko, who’s been described as the dossier’s primary researcher, was arrested as part of an investigation by John Durham, the special counsel appointed by Trump’s Justice Department to investigate the origins of the Russia probe.
Danchenko is the second person to be charged in recent months as part of the Durham probe. In September, prominent Democratic lawyer Michael Sussmann was charged with making a false statement to the FBI. Sussmann, who shared concerns with the bureau in 2016 about communications between the Trump campaign and Russia, allegedly failed to disclose during the meeting that he was working for multiple clients, including Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
— David A. Graham (@GrahamDavidA) November 4, 2021
The indictment charges Danchenko, a Russian citizen who lives in Virginia, with lying to FBI agents back in 2017 about some of the sources of information that he passed on to former British spy Christopher Steele. The indictment charges that Danchenko told agents he hadn’t used any information from a public relations executive, a longtime Clinton supporter with Democratic party ties, for his reports when he in fact had. Danchenko is also charged with making misleading comments about receiving an anonymous phone call that he believed was from a prominent Russian-American businessman. “Danchenko never received such a phone call,” the indictment reads.
SOURCE BEHIND STEELE DOSSIER ARRESTED AS PART OF DURHAM PROBE https://t.co/o4gRrmz0NH
— Eric Garland (@ericgarland) November 4, 2021
The FBI used information from the Steele Dossier as part of its legal argument for secret government surveillance of Carter Page, a former Trump campaign adviser, during the 2016 election, without noting any red flags about the information. Danchenko told The New York Times last year that he’d simply passed along raw intelligence information to Steele.
ERROR #6: The NYT writes that the Steele dossier contained "a salacious claim about a purported sex tape."See Also
No, it didn't.
The tape in question *wasn't* said to include any sex, let alone Donald Trump involved in any sex. And it wouldn't be right to call it "salacious," either.
— Seth Abramson (@SethAbramson) November 4, 2021
Danchenko was set to appear in federal court in Virginia Thursday afternoon. MSNBC devoted some time to the story earler in the day. Watch their coverage, below.