A former F.B.I. lawyer intends to plead guilty after he was charged with falsifying a document as part of a deal with prosecutors conducting their own criminal inquiry of the Russia investigation, according to his lawyer and court documents made public on Friday.
The lawyer, Kevin Clinesmith, 38, who was assigned to the Russia investigation, plans to admit that he altered an email from the C.I.A. that investigators relied on to seek renewed court permission in 2017 for a secret wiretap on the former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. Mr. Clinesmith’s lawyer said he had made a mistake while trying to clarify facts for a colleague.
Mr. Clinesmith had written texts expressing opposition to President Trump, who immediately promoted the plea agreement as proof that the Russia investigation was illegitimate and politically motivated. He opened a White House news conference by calling Mr. Clinesmith “corrupt” and the deal “just the beginning.”
Mr. Trump has long been blunt about seeing the continuing investigation by the prosecutor examining the earlier inquiry, John H. Durham, as political payback whose fruits he would like to see revealed in the weeks before the election.
Prosecutors did not reveal any evidence in charging documents that Mr. Clinesmith’s actions were part of any broader conspiracy to undermine Mr. Trump. And the Justice Department’s independent inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, has found that law enforcement officials had sufficient reason to open the Russia investigation, and found no evidence that they acted with political bias.
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