Special Counsel Robert Mueller has been targeted by people attempting to offer women money to make false “accusations of sexual misconduct and workplace harassment” against him, according to an explosive article in The Atlantic.
According to Peter Carr, a spokesman for the Special Counsel’s office:
“When we learned last week of allegations that women were offered money to make false claims about the Special Counsel, we immediately referred the matter to the FBI for investigation.”
The details of how the plot to frame the Special Counsel came to light is a story that seems ripped right out of the pages of a spy novel. It begins a little over a week ago when several journalists received this email from an unidentified woman claiming to live in Fort Myers. Florida:
“I was contacted via phone call by a man named Bill Christensen, who had a British accent, and said that he would like to ask me a couple of questions about Robert Mueller, whom I worked with when I was a paralegal for Pillsbury, Madison, and Sutro in 1974 (now called Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman),” the individual claimed. “I asked him who he was working for, and he told me his boss was some sort of politics guy in Washington named Jack Burkman (or Berkman… Not sure how it’s spelled)…….”
“….He (Bill Christensen) then offered to pay off all of my credit card debt, plus bring me a check for $20,000 if I would do one thing. In more of an effort to get him to go away than anything else, I asked him what in the hell he wanted me to do. He said that we could not talk about it on the phone, and he asked me to download an app on my phone called Signal, which he said was more secure. Reluctantly, I downloaded the app and he called me on that app a few minutes later. He said (and I will never forget exactly what it was) ‘I want you to make accusations of sexual misconduct and workplace harassment against Robert Mueller, and I want you to sign a sworn affidavit to that effect’.”
After receiving the email, reporters initially determined that it was a hoax after running background checks that determined that no one with the woman’s name was listed as living in Fort Myers. However, in attempting to investigate who could be behind the apparent hoax, journalists from Hill Reporter called the number the woman had given them. Shortly after attempting to make phone contact, a text message was sent back with an ominous warning:
“You’re in over your head…. Drop this”
Even more threateningly, the message included the home addresses of two of the publication’s editors. Soon they received a phone call originating from the same area code as the text message from a person alleging to be Mike Wilcox from a company called Surefire Intelligence. During the call, he issued a verbal threat, demanding that Hill Reporter “stop communicating with” the woman who had sent the email.
As all of this was taking place, a Republican lobbyist, radio host and right-wing conspiracy theorist, Jack Burkman (who was referred to in the initial email), began telling his Facebook followers that he is investigating allegations of alcohol-related sexual misconduct against Special Counsel Robert Mueller, saying that Mueller “has a whole lifetime history of harassing women.”
When contacted by The Atlantic, Burkman denied knowing the woman who wrote the email about being offered money to lie about the Special Counsel and said that the FBI referral was “a joke, Mueller wants to deflect attention from his sex assault troubles by attacking me.” He also said in an email to the publication that “on Thursday 1200 NOON ROSSYLN HOLIDAY INN we will present a very credible witness who will allege that Mr. Mueller committed against her a sexual assault.”
With the accusations of this phony set up now under scrutiny by the FBI, it will be interesting to see what they make of Burkman’s upcoming “witness,” given the fact that Burkman has been an active promoter of unfounded conspiracy theories time and again including the discredited Seth Rich murder fantasies and Pizzagate.
The whole incident demonstrates the lengths to which the Trump administration and its allies will go to to try to discredit the Special Counsel’s investigation into his campaign’s collusion with Russia and his attempts to interfere with that probe and obstruct justice.
You can read the full original email about the attempt to pay for false accusations against the Special Counsel below.
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