Interesting, and not at all unexpected.
Courtesy of Reuters:
A lawyer for Julian Assange told a London court on Friday that she was present when an ally of U.S. President Donald Trump offered to arrange a pardon for the WikiLeaks founder in return for information that would “benefit President Trump politically”.
Australian-born Assange, 49, is fighting to avoid being sent to the United States, where he is charged with conspiring to hack government computers and violating an espionage law over the release of confidential cables by WikiLeaks in 2010-2011.
His lawyer, Jennifer Robinson, said in a witness statement to the court that she observed a meeting at the Ecuadorian embassy in London in 2017 between Assange and Republican then-U.S. Representative Dana Rohrabacher.
She said Rohrabacher and an assistant offered to arrange a pardon for Assange in return for information about the hacking of Democratic emails before the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
“They stated that President Trump was aware of and had approved of them coming to meet with Mr Assange to discuss a proposal – and that they would have an audience with the President to discuss the matter on their return to Washington DC,” she said.
“The proposal put forward by Congressman Rohrabacher was that Mr. Assange identify the source for the 2016 election publications in return for some form of pardon, assurance or agreement, which would both benefit President Trump politically and prevent U.S. indictment and extradition,” Robinson said.
This is the second time we have heard about this offer of a pardon, but the first time I believe that we have been told there was a witness.
Of course, Rohrabacher claimed he made the offer completely on his own, which makes no sense at all since he could not promise anything on behalf of Trump without his explicit assurance that he would follow through.
It is also worth noting that Rohrabacher was named “Russia’s favorite Congressman.”
Now Justice Department lawyers are admitting that the offer took place.
Courtesy of The Daily Beast:
Lawyers representing the United States at Julian Assange’s extradition trial in Britain have accepted the claim that the WikiLeaks founder was offered a presidential pardon by a Congressman on the condition that he would help cover up Russia’s involvement in hacking emails from the Democratic National Committee.
Jennifer Robinson, a lawyer, told the court that she had attended a meeting between Assange, then Republican Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, and pro-Trump troll Charles Johnson at Assange’s hide-out, the Ecuadorian embassy in London, on August 15, 2017.
Only a fool would believe that Trump was not totally behind the offer, though he continues to deny it.