JUDGE NAPOLITANO: “The Russia probe is now a criminal investigation”

It was revealed Wednesday that FBI agents raided the home of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort late last month.

The day after Manafort voluntarily appeared before the Senate Intelligence Committee, FBI agents arrived before dawn at his Alexandria home with a search warrant.

Manafort had been under serious scrutiny for possible financial dealings with Russian entities during the 2016 presidential campaign, but advisers said that he had been voluntarily turning over documents up to that point.

Reportedly, Manafort did not know the raid was coming, but did not resist the authorities demands to search his home.

Weighing in on the matter today was Judge Napolitano, the legal analyst for the Fox News Channel.  (See video below).

According to the judge, the raid was during a period of time when Manafort’s lawyer was working with investigators. “Manafort’s lawyer is in a relationship with Mueller. They were cooperating. Going back and forth about handing over documents. Then the raid happens without any warning,” explained Napolitano. “This means investigators went to a federal judge and claimed they could not get what they were looking for via this cooperation.”

He went on to explain that the federal investigators must have felt that the information they needed would soon be gone, and so they were able to get the warrant for the raid. According to the judge, “This shows there’s a there there.”

Based on his experience as a judge, Napolitano said the process going forward after a raid of this kind will include “putting the pieces of the puzzle together.” Then after they do that, they will probably seek an indictment of some kind. He said that in this sort of case, they often try to indict lower level people like Manafort and then persuade them to hand over the information they want regarding the bigger people. So in other words, they may let Manafort off the hook if he provides information they want about Trump.

The judge confirmed this is now a criminal investigation.

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