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Mueller probe 'close to being completed': acting USA attorney general

30 January 2019

"I hope that we can get the report from Director Mueller as soon as possible", Whitaker said.

"I've been fully briefed on the investigation, and you know I look forward to Director Mueller delivering a final report", Whitaker said.

Unless Mueller releases his report in less than two weeks, it seems unlikely that Whitaker will even be involved once the investigation wraps up. On Monday, acting AG Matt Whitaker said Mueller's investigation "is, I think, close to being completed".

Mueller, a former Federal Bureau of Investigation director, was named by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in May 2017 to look into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Although plenty of associates have been caught in Mueller's web, the investigation has not snagged several of the left's top targets, from Donald Trump, Jr., to the President himself. They included another commitment to make public whatever report Mueller completes, although all along Barr has been careful to say he would observe the law and Justice Department regulations as appropriate - stopping short of a blanket promise.

Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 campaign and any possible links to the Trump campaign began in May 2017, shortly after President Trump abruptly fired FBI Director James Comey.

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Whitaker responded to some of that criticism on Monday saying that the statements he made were when he was "a private citizen only with publicly available information".

While the White House likely celebrated news that Mueller's probe is wrapping up, Democrats were already mashing the panic button, concerned that Whitaker was unduly influencing Mueller's timeline, and that the parade of Mueller indictments may be coming to an end without a high-profile White House or Trump team arrest.

For example, the special counsel's 24-page indictment unsealed on Friday alleged that Stone worked to obstruct the House Intelligence Committee's investigation into Russian interference by making false statements to the committee, denying he had records sought by the committee and persuading a witness to provide false testimony.

When contacted by Law&Crime about this, the Special Counsel's Office declined to comment. He took over control overseeing the probe after Attorney General Jeff Sessions resigned at the president's request in November.

In his responses, Barr stressed he would not interfere with Mueller's investigation and that his previous memorandum critical of Mueller's authority did not necessarily reflect his current views.

Mueller probe 'close to being completed': acting USA attorney general