Earlier this month, I explored what the organization exposed by the first court filings in the Mueller investigation showed. Politico has a version of the same analysis today that adds some more interesting details.
What ought to be the headline details is that the prosecutor on Mueller’s team who worked on Watergate, James Quarles, is the one liaising with White House lawyers.
Mueller’s liaison to the White House is James Quarles, a former Watergate prosecutor who has helped arrange an ongoing series of interviews with current and former Trump aides. Quarles was involved in the questioning of former press secretary Sean Spicer during a daylong interview last month, according to a person with knowledge of the interview, and he’s a primary point of contact for Trump’s personal attorney, John Dowd, as well as Ty Cobb, the lead White House lawyer handling the Russia investigation.
That seems like worthwhile symbolism.
The article describes who is leading the investigation into Mike Flynn.
And at the center of the investigation into Flynn is Jeannie Rhee, a former Obama-era deputy assistant attorney general who most recently worked with Mueller at the WilmerHale law firm — and whose name has so far appeared only on publicly available court documents relating to the guilty plea of former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos. Assisting Rhee on the Flynn case is Zainab Ahmad, an assistant U.S. attorney from New York with a specialty in prosecuting and collecting evidence in international criminal and terrorism cases — and whose name hasn’t yet appeared in Russia-related court filings at all.
I find it curious that Rhee has been involved in the Papadopoulos plea, given that there’s no sign that links up to Flynn. And I’m just as curious that Ahmad (who, as I noted, is a specialist in trying foreigners brought into the US) is on that team. Are there more Turks that will be brought in on the Flynn investigation? This passage doesn’t mention Brandon Van Grack (it later describes Van Grack’s role in Papadopoulos’ arraignment back in July, without explaining that that’s pretty clearly because he’s used to the court house in Alexandria, where Papadopoulos was arraigned), though I assume he’s still on that team.
Finally, the piece notes that Mueller added another prosecutor (it says there are currently 17 prosecutors, which may mean he has added two). Though unlike with all the other prosecutors on the team, Mueller’s not telling who this one is.
Mueller’s work isn’t just confined to his team of prosecutors, which special counsel spokesman Peter Carr said grew last week to 17 with the addition of an unnamed lawyer.
That may mean some other case just got deemed related to Mueller’s, but it’s one that he doesn’t want to reveal has been connected yet.