In the memo, Papadopoulos’s lawyers detailed the FBI’s January 27, 2017, questioning of their client, explaining that for two hours, Papadopoulos answered questions about professor Joseph Mifsud, Carter Page, Sergei Millian, the “Trump Dossier,” and others on the campaign. According to Papadopoulos, “[t]he agents asked George if he would be willing to actively cooperate and contact various people they had discussed.” Papadopoulos said he would be willing to try.
Yet when Mifsud—the Maltese professor who in late April 2016 told Papadopoulos that the Russians had “dirt on Hillary” in the form of “thousands of emails”—visited the United States just two weeks later to speak at a State Department-sponsored conference, the FBI didn’t even bother to have Papadopoulos reach out to his former colleague.
Instead, the FBI questioned Mifsud, then in the special counsel’s sentencing memorandum blamed Papadopoulos for the government’s inability “to challenge the Professor or potentially detain or arrest him while he was still in the United States.” According to Mueller’s office, Papadopoulos’ “lies also hindered the government’s ability to discover who else may have known or been told about the Russians possessing ‘dirt’ on Clinton,” and prevented the FBI from determining “how and where the Professor obtained the information [and] why the Professor provided information to the defendant.”
I previously explained why the special counsel’s claim that Papadopoulos’s lies impeded the FBI’s investigation doesn’t fly. Papadopoulos’s attorneys similarly argued in their memo that their client’s lies did not actually harm the FBI’s probe, adding significantly that “George was still a cooperating source in their investigation” at the time investigators questioned Mifsud.
That final point and the revelation in Papadopoulos’ sentencing memo that the FBI had asked the former Trump advisor if he would be willing to contact Mifsud—and Papadopoulos’ agreement to do so—exposes the FBI’s purported investigation into Russia as a sham.