Trump Campaign Apparently Met with Russian Spy

“Rinat Akhmetshin, a Russian immigrant who met last summer with senior Trump campaign officials, has often struck colleagues as a classic Washington mercenary — loyal to his wife, his daughter and his bank account. He avoided work that would antagonize Moscow, they suggested, only because he profited from his reputation as a man with valuable connections there,” the New York Times reports.

“But interviews with his associates and documents… indicate that Mr. Akhmetshin, who is under scrutiny by the special counsel Robert Mueller, has much deeper ties to the Russian government… He has an association with a former deputy head of a Russian spy service, the F.S.B., and a history of working for close allies of President Vladimir V. Putin. Twice, he has worked on legal battles for Russian tycoons whose opponents suffered sophisticated hacking attacks, arousing allegations of computer espionage.”

Jonathan Chait: “Of all the facts in the Russia scandal, this one seems the most underplayed. Email hacking is one of Akhmetshin’s basic methods of operation. The Trump campaign met with a Russian spy who is known for pulling the exact kind of crime that was committed in this case.”

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