At Roger Stone trial, Rick Gates says Trump knew of WikiLeaks plans

Reuters [archive]

Trump likely lied to Mueller about 2016 WikiLeaks email plans, if this is true.

Candidate Donald Trump absolutely knew what his campaign was doing with regard to Russia, Roger Stone, and Wikileaks, testified a former top Trump campaign official in Washington today at the trial of Roger Stone.

Testifying in court at Stone's trial on Tuesday, former top Trump campaign official Rick Gates said he overheard at least one phone call between Stone and candidate Donald Trump in late July 2016, in which Gates says he thought Stone and Trump were discussing campaign plans that involved WikiLeaks.

Gates said in court today he figured out that's what they were discussing on the call because when Trump hung up, he said “more information would be coming.”

Gates said he couldn't hear what Stone said on the call, which he said took place while Gates and Trump were en route from Trump Tower to LaGuardia Airport in a car.

Was anyone else giving the Trump campaign information about or from WikiLeaks?

On Tuesday, Rick Gates testified in court that “the only person I’m aware of that had information at that time was Mr. Stone.”

From reporting by Rachel Weiner, Spencer S. Hsu, and Matt Zapotosky in the Washington Post:

Testifying at the trial of Roger Stone — a Trump friend accused of lying about his own WikiLeaks-related dealings — Rick Gates said he overheard a phone call in which Stone seemed to make the president aware of a planned WikiLeaks release. Gates and other witnesses testified that Stone posited himself as something of an intermediary between WikiLeaks and the campaign, with access to insider information.

Gates said his boss, Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, had told him that Trump would be kept updated on WikiLeaks’ plans to release Democratic emails — which authorities concluded were hacked by Russia.

The testimony from the former high-ranking campaign official indicates that Trump’s knowledge of WikiLeaks was more advanced than he has previously stated. In written responses to questions from special counsel Robert S. Mueller III last year, Trump said he did not recall receiving any information about WikiLeaks disclosures in advance, being told that Stone “or anyone associated with my campaign” had discussions with WikiLeaks about future leaks, or ever discussing WikiLeaks with Stone.

Read more: Former top Trump official details campaign’s dealings on WikiLeaks, and suggests Trump was in the know [By Rachel Weiner, Spencer S. Hsu, and Matt Zapotosky ]