Former Trump 2016 campaign adviser Michael Caputo said Tuesday that a Russian FBI informant attempted to frame him by offering damaging information on then-Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during the election.
“I was approached by a Russian national FBI informant in late May of 2016. He wanted to give me some dirt on Hillary Clinton. I turned it down,” Caputo told Fox Business Network host Trish Regan.
Asked how he knew the man was an FBI informant, Caputo said he found out during a face-to-face interview with special counsel Robert Mueller’s team. “When they asked me about him, I told them what I knew. By their faces I knew that it was someone that had been sent to me,” said Caputo. “It was after my interrogation with the Mueller team that I went out, hired private investigators, and found out the guy had used a fake name — Henry Greenberg — and that he had been working with the FBI for 17 years.”
Caputo said he made attempts to provide the Justice Department’s Inspector General Michael Horowitz details of his interactions with Greenberg.
Last year, the Washington Post reported that longtime political operative Roger Stone said he met with Greenberg in May 2016 and was offered dirt on Clinton for $2 million.
“You don’t understand Donald Trump, he doesn’t pay for anything,” Stone told Greenberg, the Post reported.
In text messages obtained by the newspaper, Stone told Caputo that the meeting was a “waste of time.”
Greenberg, who has also used the name Henry Oknyansky, has dismissed reports that he is an FBI informant, saying he has not done any work for the bureau since 2013.
On Tuesday, the New York Times reported that Horowitz is probing the activities of Stefan Halper, an FBI informant who was tasked with collecting information on Trump campaign aides George Papadopoulos and Carter Page during the election.
Attorney General William Barr said this week that he believes the Trump campaign was spied on, and he plans to investigate the FBI’s conduct for potential wrongdoing.
“I think spying did occur,” Barr said before a Senate Appropriations subcommittee Wednesday. “But the question is whether it was predicated — adequately predicated, and I’m not suggesting that it wasn’t adequately predicated, but I need to explore that. I think it’s my obligation. Congress is usually concerned about intelligence agencies and law enforcement agencies staying in their proper lane, and I want to make sure that happened. We have a lot of rules about that.”
Barr said the probe is not “endemic” to the FBI, but “believes “there was a failure among a group of leaders at the upper echelons.”
“I feel I have an obligation to make sure that government power isn’t abused,” he said.