Trump Jr. Cites Attorney-Client Privilege In Russia Inquiry

Share

Donald Trump Jr. cited attorney-client privilege as the reason he refused to answer lawmakers' questions about a meeting he had with his father, President Donald Trump.

Trump Jr.is testifying to the House Intelligence Committee behind closed doors. Trump, Jr. wasn't even on the plane, he was talking to his father through Hope Hicks, to whom Trump the Elder was dictating the statement.

"If his father knew about the meeting in advance and either condoned it or encouraged it, that is something [special counsel Robert S. Mueller III] would be very interested in", said Jeffrey Jacobovitz, a white collar criminal defense lawyer who has defended Clinton officials and is now at Arnall Golden Gregory LLP.

Trump Jr. claimed client-attorney privilege to justify his refusal to divulge what he and his father talked about, and top Democrat on the committee, Adam Schiff, was having none of it.

Mr. Schiff said that he believed the contents of the phone call should not be kept secret simply because lawyers participated in it.


"Today, I understand why it took place to begin with and why it ended so quickly with a feeling of mutual disappointment and time wasted", she wrote of the meeting, according to NBC. Veselnitskaya says Trump pressed her for written evidence of malfeasance by Clinton during the meeting.

Trump Jr. and the other meeting attendees have maintained that the meeting was instead focused on USA sanctions against Russian Federation, rather than dirt on Clinton.

But Schiff questioned whether that was a valid reason to not tell Congress about the conversations.

Over on MSNBC in the previous hour, fellow House Intel Democrat Eric Swalwell said Trump Jr. "They stuck to their position that they were not going to share any conversations that Donald Trump Jr. had with his father about the June 9th meeting", Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., told CNN Wednesday night. He also said he had not told Trump that he exchanged private messages with the WikiLeaks Twitter account, the sources said. The statement omitted facts about the session with the Russian lawyer, indicating it was primarily about the adoption of Russian children by American families.

This question gets to a pattern legal experts have noticed among key members of the Trump campaign and administration: They continually forget, misstate, mislead or even - in the case of Flynn - lie about their relations with Russian Federation. "That's not the goal of attorney-client privilege". Additionally, a conversation that includes a party and his attorney along with a third party that the attorney does not represent would generally not be considered privileged. "Who was he representing and what was the objective of this conversation?..." "In this instance, both Trump and Trump Jr. are subjects of the same investigation and any legal advice they received on these topics would potentially implicate the other person". In this case, it doesn't necessarily matter if it was attempted or if it came to fruition.

Share