BREAKING! George Papadopoulos Says FBI Should Have Surveilled Him MORE Than They Did

As I noted, on Tuesday, Mike Flynn’s Fox News lawyer demanded that Mike Flynn receive the contents of two phones reportedly used by Joseph Mifusd — one dating to May 2011 and another dating to December 2014 — so she can contest the guilty plea Flynn entered into regarding conversations and letters written in 2017 that did not involve Mifsud.

Now George Papadopoulos is getting into the act, complaining that “Comey or Mueller” never went to obtain these phones from Italy.

It’s a remarkable complaint, coming as it does from Papadopoulos. After bitching for over a year that the FBI surveilled him too much (all the while repeating hoaxes and ignoring the record that shows the opposite), notably that he was picked up in what were probably conversations with targeted Israelis, Papadopoulos is effectively arguing that the FBI didn’t surveil him enough.

That’s all the more remarkable given that the government is on the record stating that one reason they couldn’t do with Mifsud what they did with other foreigners who entered the US during the Russian investigation — seize their phones — is because Papadopoulos lied to the FBI.

The defendant’s lies to the FBI in January 2017 impeded the FBI’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Most immediately, those statements substantially hindered investigators’ ability to effectively question the Professor when the FBI located him in Washington, D.C. approximately two weeks after the defendant’s January 27, 2017 interview. The defendant’s lies undermined investigators’ ability to challenge the Professor or potentially detain or arrest him while he was still in the United States. The government understands that the Professor left the United States on February 11, 2017 and he has not returned to the United States since then.

Indeed, had the FBI been able to seize Mifsud’s phones while he was in the US during a period he was in contact with Papadopoulos, they would have a better chance of obtaining the phones Mifsud actually used to communicate with Papadopoulos, which it’s not at all clear are either of these dated phones. But because Papadopoulos lied, he prevented them from establishing the probable cause that would have permitted them to get the phones.

There’s one more curious aspect of Papadopoulos’ complaint.

Another of the details the government revealed to substantiate that Papadopoulos did not cooperate in the investigation is that he hid the existence of the phone he actually used to communicate with Mifsud through three proffer sessions, on August 10, August 11, and September 19, 2017 before finally revealing it on September 20.

The defendant also did not notify the government about a cellular phone he used in London during the course of the campaign – that had on it substantial communications between the defendant and the Professor – until his fourth and final proffer session. This cell phone was not among the devices seized at the airport because it was already in the defendant’s family home in Chicago.

The detail that Papadopoulos withheld the phone he actually used with Mifsud suggests he really didn’t want the true nature of his communications with Mifsud to be revealed. It may also suggest that FBI had, by September 2017, done enough surveillance of Mifsud to know what was on whatever phones he had actually been using with Papadopoulos.

And Conspiracy George has not — as far as I’m aware — talked about the metadata showing Mifsud’s ties with someone who appeared to be at the nexus of the two Russian operations, metadata that the FBI considered an ongoing investigation in April, when the Mueller Report was redacted.

That is, there’s a decent chance the FBI obtained anything interesting from 2016 from these phones via other means, means that also remain protected.

Whatever the reason for Papadopoulos’ change in heart, I do hope he’ll inform Bill Barr that, on reconsideration, he actually thinks the FBI didn’t surveil him enough in 2017, so Barr can stop his global wild goose chase and return to DC and start doing the work of an Attorney General.

29 replies
  1. P J Evans says:

    I don’t have a clue what he’s trying to do here, but I hope it gets him more time behind bars. (Also, he’s either being poorly advised, or he’s really not bright.)

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Or he’s continuing to be someone else’s front man and coffee boy, using claims for information about his own case to reveal information useful to others.

    • Jenny says:

      George did not get enough time in prison. I will go with “he’s not really bright.” Perhaps he is trying to stay relevant needing more than 15 minutes of fame. More fame more money?
      Thanks Marcy, good post.

      • bmaz says:

        Yes, he really did given the charge he pled to, and was sentenced on, and given his lack of any criminal history.

    • John Paul Jones says:

      Profile of Georgie Porgie in the Washington Post suggested very strongly that (a) he’s not that bright, or rather, lacks the ability to see very far into things and (b) he’s an opportunist. This allows him to be shrewd without really being smart. Seems like a Carter Page, but with a bit of a sense of humour.

      • TooLoose LeTruck says:

        Well, I see you got there before me…

        Indeed, why does it have to be one or the other?

        Why not both? Bad advice AND stupid…

        I’ve never seen anything like this… what a swirling, cascading fustercluck… perhaps indeed, some of the main players are throwing out so much contradictory information in hopes to confuse people… and perhaps they’re just bat-shite crazy too…

        Is crazy a 3rd possibility, along w/ stupid and bad advice?

  2. Vicks says:

    I still think these folks are counting on on Rooty & Co pulling off their mission.
    Good luck at this point but, I’m through claiming there are limits on what these people can get away with.

  3. Marinela says:

    He is probably trying to stay relevant to anybody that is willing to hire him.
    If you have a criminal status, can you legally be a lobbyist or a registered agent?

    Also, if Barr has Mifsud phones, may mean they implicate George P.
    So he is trying to mud the waters perhaps.

  4. Anne says:

    If Mifsud is using a European phone number and is physically located in Europe, the NSA isn’t going to pick up his metadata unless he contacts a US phone number — in which case the NSA will pick up the metadata even if the US phone is in Europe at the time. If Georgie was in the UK he probably got himself a UK phone, so the NSA wouldn’t see anything.

    But it sounds like Mifsud was under surveillance already, so the European phone companies were picking up all his traffic and sending it to the FBI. Possibly including conversations. This makes seizing the actual phone(s) unnecessary.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      You might rethink the qualification that the NSA only has access to metadata from US and foreign phones that are physically in the US.

      As John points out, there is also extensive sharing of signals and other intelligence among the Five Eyes. The NSA and Britain’s GCHQ, for example, have long exchanged sigint that each picks up on the other’s nationals, readily skirting prohibitions on domestic surveillance.

  5. John says:

    Don’t forget the 5 eyes can pick up such data and share it with U.S. intelligence. We don’t know what is known. Bill barr’s romp through Europe is an exercise in panicked obfuscation. There must be more to set him off on his pantomime chase.

        • bmaz says:

          In the United States, it really doesn’t. I don’t know where people get this from, except “secret sect….boogity boogity”.

          In the US, Opus Dei wield power pretty much only through the Federalist Society. And the FedSoc as malignant a cancer is as you will find on the body politic of the US. But Opus Dei does not accomplish squat here but through Fed Soc tentacles.

          • Molly Pitcher says:

            Well given how the Federalist Society has managed to pack all of the courts I would say they have wielded all kinds of power.

            And I might also say that a couple of the camps at a certain men’s organization that meets in the redwoods in California might quibble with you.

            • bmaz says:

              Agree with your first paragraph completely, which was my point both yesterday and relentlessly as long as this blog has existed.

              As to the Bohemian Grove, there are some dubious people that participate in that freak show, but little to no power is exercised through the Bohemian organization itself. They are just a bunch of over the hill frat boys. And I don’t give a fuck if they “quibble” with me.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      That was gonna be as close as Roger got to being Tom Hagen or a courtier for a senatorial-rank Roman. But he must be pleased his threat-by-film scene wasn’t put into pictures for the jury.

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