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Durham moves to admit evidence in Danchenko trial that may discredit Trump Ritz-Carlton Moscow alleg


September 13, 2022 6:11pm EDT
Durham moves to admit evidence in Danchenko trial that may discredit Trump Ritz-Carlton Moscow allegations
Durham says 'source' of allegations does not recall speaking to Danchenko or having knowledge of them before media reports

By Brooke Singman , Jake Gibson , David Spunt | Fox News

Special Counsel John Durham is seeking to admit evidence in the trial of Russian national Igor Danchenko that would discredit the "lurid" Ritz-Carlton Moscow allegations against then-presidential candidate Donald Trump contained in the salacious and unverified Steele dossier.

In a filing unsealed Tuesday, Durham moved to admit evidence regarding the FBI’s prior counterintelligence investigation of Danchenko and to exclude evidence concerning allegations of "political bias underpinning the indictment."

Danchenko, who has been identified as the primary sub-source for the Steele dossier, is charged with five counts of making false statements to the FBI. The charges stem from statements Danchenko made relating to the sources he used in providing information to an investigative firm in the U.K.

Durham alleges that Danchenko in June 2016 reported to ex-British intelligence officer Christopher Steele allegations regarding "Donald Trump’s purported sexual activity at the Ritz-Carlton Moscow."

"The Steele report states that ‘Source D,’ who is described as a ‘close associate’ of Trump, who had organized and managed his recent trips to Moscow, had confirmed that Trump had engaged in lurid sexual activity at the hotel," the filing states, adding that the Steele report also said the allegations "had been confirmed by ‘Source E,’ a senior (western) member of staff at the hotel."

But, in a January 2017 interview with the FBI, Danchenko claimed he had sourced the information while staying at the Ritz-Carlton Moscow in mid-June 2016 during a planning trip for a future business conference.

Durham says Danchenko acknowledged that he had "visited, but not stayed at, the hotel during the 2016 trip."

"In his January 2017 interview with the FBI, the defendant also claimed that he inquired about the Ritz-Carlton allegations with hotel staff who did not deny their veracity," Durham states. "The defendant [Danchenko] also informed the FBI that he reported the names of these hotel staff to Christopher Steele."



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