Feds Arrest Steele Dossier Researcher

An analyst considered the primary researcher of the Steele dossier was arrested Thursday by federal authorities.

Igor Danchenko, 43, was arrested as part of special counsel John Durham’s investigation. The Russian citizen and Virginia resident was charged with “five counts of making false statements to the FBI,” according to a release issued by the special counsel’s office.

Durham’s office added that the charges in the indictment stemmed from statements made by Danchenko relating to the sources he used in providing information to a United Kingdom investigative firm that prepared what are identified in the indictment as “Company Reports.”

Danchenko’s arrest was first reported by The New York Times.

Durham was appointed by former Attorney General William Barr to probe the FBI’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

A new round of subpoenas came after Durham charged Hillary Clinton’s former campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann in an indictment alleging he lied to federal investigators in September 2016, when he gave them data that he claimed showed a connection between the Trump Organization and Alfa Bank in Russia.

The phony Steele dossier was created as part of a Democrat effort to discredit former President Donald Trump’s election victory.

Danchenko was the primary researcher of the Steele dossier, a compilation of rumors and unproven assertions. He provided information to British ex-spy Christopher Steele, who compiled the accusations about Trump in a series of reports.

Steele said those reports were based on information from a person he called his “primary sub-source,” which was Danchenko, people familiar with the matter told the The Washington Post.

Steele presented the dossier to the FBI, which used it to secure secret surveillance court orders targeting former Trump adviser Carter Page.

The charges against Danchenko were expected to be unsealed later Thursday, the Post reported.

The Post also reported that an inspector general report found that Danchenko tried to distance himself from the dossier when the FBI later questioned him about the allegations in the file. He claimed the dossier overstated information he had given to Steele.

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