MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Sensitive information about US President Donald Trump’s election rival Hillary Clinton, which Trump’s son was allegedly offered by Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya during their meeting in June 2016, was prepared by Fusion GPS, the same company which was behind the Trump dossier, according to Reuters.
Glenn Simpson, co-founder of Fusion GPS, which hired former UK spy Christopher Steele to collect compromising information about Trump and his alleged links to the Kremlin, had met with Veselnitskaya before and after her meeting with Trump’s associates, including his son Donald Trump Jr., in June 2016, according to Fox News.
The same person, Christopher Steele, wrote a dossier on Trump, a 35-page document published by BuzzFeed in January containing unsubstantiated claims that Trump participated in activities that could make him vulnerable to Russian blackmail.
According to the Washington Post, the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee helped fund Fusion GPS' research on Trump’s alleged ties with Russia, with funds reportedly being sent through the law firm Perkins Coie until the end of October 2016. Fusion GPS was originally hired to do the research during the 2016 Republican primary campaign for a still-unknown Republican donor who wanted to defeat Trump.
Both Moscow and Trump have repeatedly denied the so-called "collusion" during the last US presidential race, with Russian officials saying that the claims are aimed at serving as a tool for Washington's internal struggle.
The US House Intelligence Committee is set to discuss the dossier with the company next week.
Veselnitskaya, Clinton and Presidential Bid
The Reuters news agency reported, citing sources familiar with the matter, that the information which Veselnitskaya allegedly sought to give to Trump’s team was gathered by Fusion GPS.
After reports about the June meeting emerged in the US media, Trump Jr. published his e-mails about the meeting, saying he was offered compromising materials about Clinton. According to Veselnitskaya, the meeting with Trump Jr. was aimed at informing him about illegal support by UK financier William Browder for Clinton.
The information about the meeting between Veselnitskaya and Trump’s team have emerged amid the US investigation into the alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election.
Veselnitskaya has insisted that she never had sensitive information about Clinton, nor any intentions of damaging the former presidential candidate's reputation and denied any links with the Kremlin. According to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, Veselnitskaya did not represent the Russian government.
In December, 2014, Veselnitskaya, who was then involved in a legal battle between her client and Browder, received a legal research memo, prepared by Fusion GPS, that the Ziff Brothers, US financiers linked with Browder, had made a large contribution to a charity run by Clinton, according to Reuters.
Fusion GPS was hired to conduct the research on Browder by the law firm Baker and Hostetler of Russian businessman Denis Katsyv, who had been involved in disputes with Browder and US prosecutors, the outlet noted.