Special counsel Robert Mueller, the former FBI director now overseeing a sweeping investigation into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 elections and any possible ties to President Donald Trump and his associates, secretly obtained tens of thousands of emails from the administration's transition team.
The letter from attorney Kory Langhofer said that the Trump for America emails, including "portions that are susceptible to claims of privilege", were obtained and used by the special counsel "without notifying TFA or taking customary precautions to protect TFA's rights and privileges".
In a letter to congressional committees, Trump campaign lawyer Kory Langhofer alleged the General Services Administration (GSA) "unlawfully produced" private materials, including privileged communications which Mueller then used as part of his Russian Federation probe.
Loewentritt told BuzzFeed News that the GSA initially "suggested a warrant or subpoena" for the materials, but that the Special Counsel's Office determined the letter route was sufficient. This person reportedly said that the transition, which still exists in order to wind-down the operation, will send Special Counsel Robert Mueller a letter demanding investigators return the emails.
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Trump's transition lawyer also took aim in its letter at GSA, which it accused of "unlawful conduct" that undermines the Presidential Transition Act of 1963, a law that spells out the procedural rules for a change in power from one president to the next.
But in August, while Beckler was in the hospital and incapacitated, Mueller's office and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents approached GSA twice for Trump transition materials, Langhofer said. He said the agreement was laid out in June before a lawyer at GSA, Richard Beckler, a Trump appointee, who has since died.
Specifically, Loewentritt said, "in using our devices", transition team members were informed that materials "would not be held back in any law enforcement" actions.
The Trump team complained these were illegally obtained, but Special Counsel's spokesman Peter Carr told various outlets that the process was perfectly legal.
The latest complaint against Mueller comes amid a barrage of criticism from Trump allies that the special counsel investigation itself is tainted on multiple fronts. "Baloney. This is another attempt to discredit Mueller as his #TrumpRussia probe tightens", Rep. Eric Swalwell, a California Democrat and member of the House Judiciary and Intelligence panels, posted on Twitter.