The Russian lawyer at the heart of the Donald Trump Jr. scandal, Natalia Veselnitskaya, is now saying that the part about her providing damning information about Hillary Clinton was nothing but a lie. However, congressional probes are not interested in hearing what she has to say about the meeting.
In a 10-minute interview on the Russian news program Vesti, Veselnitskaya explains that she only wanted to speak with Don Jr. as part of her efforts to help Russian businessman Denis Katsyv, a client who was accused of money laundering after the U.S. imposed new financial sanctions on Moscow in 2012.
“It was a private meeting,” Veselnitskaya told the interviewer, according to an account in the Moscow Times, which was published on Friday. “I asked for help — help to get out a story I had come across in my professional capacity.”
She added that the meeting “had nothing to do with [then-candidate Donald Trump’s] rivals or the presidential election. That never happened. That’s not true.”
According to the publicized email exchanges between Don Jr. and the British publicist who helped arranged the meeting, Veselnitskaya was portrayed as a “Russian government lawyer” who could provide “some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia and would be very useful to your father.”
Paul Manafort, Mr. Trump’s campaign manager at the time, and Jared Kushner, a campaign adviser and Mr. Trump’s son-in-law, also attended at least part of the meeting. They have denied that any incriminating information was given or that there was any follow-up to the meeting.
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