Mueller Uses Classic Prosecution Playbook Despite Trump Warnings – Trending Stuff

The FBI director leading the probe into the Trump Effort’s possible ties to Russia is taking a page from the playbook federal prosecutors have used from white-collar fraud into mob racketeering:

Follow the money. Start small and work up. See who will & #x 201C; flip & #x 201D; and testify against higher-ups by pursuing charges such as conspiracy, money laundering, tax evasion and obstruction of justice.

While Trump’s legal team doesn’t expect that Mueller will violate his mandate, it’s prepared to take action if he does, Jay Sekulow, one of Trump’s lawyers, said in an interview. Things that would be out of bounds include looking at Trump’s taxes or real-estate transactions of his relatives or the president, Sekulow said.

“If we believed there was an issue that developed that was outside the scope of legitimate inquiry we would, in ordinary course, document our understanding with the special counsel,” Sekulow said. “If we weren’t satisfied with the resolution we would look at going through the appropriate channels at the Department of Justice.”

People ‘Speculating’

Sekulow also said it’s “basically incorrect” to presume that Mueller is conducting a mob-style investigation when it comes to Trump and his family members, at least based on what he’s seen thus far.

“People are speculating on things without a full grasp of the nature of what’s taking place,” he said.

Rosenstein said on “Fox News Sunday” this month that “we don’t engage in fishing expeditions” and Mueller needs to come to him for approval to investigate any potential crimes beyond his mandate. Mueller and Rosenstein declined to comment for this story, depending on their aides.

Those who’ve worked with Mueller said he knows how to construct a case piece-by-piece.

“Mueller is no dummy,” said William Mateja, a former federal prosecutor who investigated white-collar offense and served at the Justice Department when Mueller was director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. “You use crimes like money laundering and tax evasion to get cooperation from people who might be in the know.”

Among the seasoned prosecutors he’s recruited in that effort is Andrew Weissmann, who worked to dismantle crime families on racketeering charges. He squeezed lower-level mobsters to become cooperating witnesses, a tactic that eventually led to the conviction of Genovese crime boss Vincent “The Chin” Gigante for racketeering in 1997. Later, Weissmann led the Enron Task Force that investigated and prosecute cases involving the Houston energy trader.

Read More: Mueller’s Dream Team for the Trump-Russia Probe

Greg Andres, another team member, is a former deputy assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s criminal division who took down Bonanno family boss Joseph Massino. He prosecuted former Credit Suisse Group AG broker Eric Butler . Butler was convicted in 2009.

To be sure, Mueller’s team is using 21st century technologies to investigate last year’s hacking into Democratic Party computers and moves into “weaponize” social media to influence voters.

However, it’s also using time-tested methods, casting a wide net to find out “who are the true power players” with knowledge of what was happening in Trump’s campaign and during his transition into the White House, said Ronald Hosko, former assistant director of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division.

“The core part of Robert Mueller’s mission is to understand whether people associated with the campaign were associated with Russians determined to influence the election results,” said Hosko, who’s currently president of the Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund.

Trump Buildings

The investigation is examining Russian purchases of apartments in Trump buildings, Trump’s participation in a controversial New York hotel development with Russian associates and Trump’s sale of a Florida mansion into a Russian oligarch in 2008, Bloomberg News reported last month. Sekulow said he hasn’t seen any evidence the investigation is currently looking into Trump’s real-estate transactions.

Trump associates who are central figures in Mueller’s analysis include Manafort, the president’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and Michael Flynn, who was ousted as national security advisor, according to two U.S. officials with knowledge of the analysis. Mueller is in talks with the White House to interview current and former government officials, such as recently departed White House chief of staff Reince Priebus, the New York Times reported.

“They’re looking at where are various people getting money from, and they’re going to try to figure out not only where did it come from, but who can they connect it to,” said Mateja, now a shareholder at the law firm of Polsinelli PC. “Can they connect it to Donald Trump?”

What’s not known yet is whether some of those under investigation are currently working to help Mueller construct a case, Hosko said.

Pressure to Act

Mueller’s analysis is likely to continue through next year if not longer, increasing pressure on him to announce indictments against individuals who committed relatively small crimes and who aren’t needed to further the analysis, based on Hosko. “The longer it drags out, the louder the complaints will get that there&#x2019nothing #x 2019 & that;s been proven,&#x201D.

The July raid on the home of Manafort, whose dealings and previous work to get a Russian-backed celebration in Ukraine have come under scrutiny, was seen as an attempt to convince him to give up any damaging information he might have on Trump or others.

Manafort changed lawyers declaring he would hire Miller & Chevalier, which specializes in tax law and fraud. The move was made because Mueller’s analysis of Manafort appears to be moving beyond collusion with Russia to focus on tax violations, ” said a person familiar with the issue.

John Dowd, another Trump attorney, called the raid a “gross abuse of the judicial process” for the sake of “shock value” — another indication that the Trump team is chafing increasingly at Mueller’s hard-charging approach.

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Georgia Dome’s final NFL game has Super Bowl significance

(CNN)The NFC Championship Game in between the Green Bay Packers and Atlanta Falcons is Sunday at 3:05 p.m. ET, and the sound level from football fans at the Georgia Dome likely will be at an all-time high.

It likewise will be the last time for Falcons fans to make that sound in the arena.
      After 25 years, the Falcons will bid farewell to the Georgia Dome, and the structure’s last NFL video game is a huge one. The winner advances to Super Bowl LI in Houston.
      “We could not have actually been more thrilled to have formally the last video game at the Dome,” Falcons head coach Dan Quinn stated previously today. “Man, are we pumped to be a part of that.”
      The Georgia Dome, which is the just center worldwide to host the Olympics, Super Bowl and Final Four , will be changed by the brand-new Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which is under building and construction next door.

      The Georgia Dome’s last occasion– Monster Jam — is set up for March 5. Later on this year, the structure will be destroyed. In its location, present strategies are for a surface area car park and green area.
      What will stay is an area packed filled with memories.

      Major occasions and a natural catastrophe

      The Georgia Dome opened in 1992, and it’s been the website of a number of minutes in sports history.
      It’s been the house of the Falcons, Georgia State University football, the yearly Peach Bowl and the Southeastern Conference Football Championship. It likewise briefly was the house court for the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks in the late 1990s while close-by Philips Arena was being constructed.

      The arena housed 2 Super Bowls. In 1994, the Buffalo Bills was up to the Dallas Cowboys in Super Bowl XXVIII , losing their 4th successive title video game. Super Bowl XXXIV in 2000 had a significant surface, where Tennessee Titans pass receiver Kevin Dyson was dealt with simply except the objective line , offering the St. Louis Rams the triumph.
      One of the most renowned minutes in United States Olympic history happened at the Georgia Dome in 1996 when a hurt Kerri Strug, later on detected with torn ligaments in her ankle, courageously nailed her 2nd vault to assist the American females win gymnastics group gold for the very first time. The 1996 Dream Team won gold in guys’s basketball, while the American females’s basketball group won gold.
      The Georgia Dome hosted 3 NCAA males’s Final Fours, with Maryland (2002), Florida (2007) and Louisville (2013) winning those championship games. It likewise was the host for the 2003 NCAA females’s Final Four, with Connecticut winning the title.


      There likewise are individual memories for CNN’s Coy Wire , who played 3 years for the Falcons. Wire’s last video game of his NFL profession was at the Georgia Dome on January 15, 2011, when Atlanta lost to the Packers in the divisional round. Numerous of his previous colleagues still bet the Falcons, and he states they understand a win implies more than a Super Bowl berth.
      “They’re likewise cognizant of the reality this is the last video game to be played in the Georgia Dome, which’s essential to them too,” Wire stated. “They understand exactly what a win there under these situations would indicate, not simply to the company, however to this city. They’re aware of that, and it’s definitely contributing to the inspiration that they currently have for this minute.”

      Final Falcons chapter

      The Georgia Dome wasn’t the initial house for the Falcons– the group played at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium from 1966-1991– however it has actually seen the most success.
      Atlanta had 10 gaining seasons and reached the playoffs 9 times at the Georgia Dome. At Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium, which was destroyed in 1997 and is now a car park, the Falcons reached the playoffs simply 4 times and had 6 gaining seasons.
      The Georgia Dome’s NFL playoff history began on January 9, 1999, when the Falcons beat the San Francisco 49ers 20-18 in the divisional playoff round. Atlanta would go on to advance to its only Super Bowl, losing to the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XXXIII.
      Atlanta hosted the NFC Championship Game in 2013. The house group missed out on out on reaching Super Bowl XLVII , with the Falcons losing to the 49ers, 28-24.
      Last week, the Falcons, seeded No. 2 in the NFC, beat the Seattle Seahawks 36-20 in the divisional round. When the top-seeded Dallas Cowboys were disturbed by the Packers a day later on, that moved the roadway to Super Bowl LI to go through Atlanta.
      At the location that’s been their house for the last quarter century, the Falcons might end their period in the Georgia Dome with a historical win.
      “I believe any person who remained in that environment last Saturday night, that’s the loudest I’ve ever heard the Dome,” Quinn stated. “And I stated, ‘All right, that fired me approximately understand that we’re going to bring the very same energy they are.’ For us to hear that, that pumped me up beyond belief to state that’s as loud as they heard it … If that’s as loud as it can get, there’s just one difficulty out there then.
      “We hope that very same dedication is taking place (Sunday). Can we turn it up once again?”
      Fans have that possibility one more time.

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