Trump Denounces Expanded Russia Inquiry As A 'witch Hunt'





Special Counsel Robert Mueller is examining a broad range of transactions involving President Donald Trump's businesses and those of his family and associates, a person familiar with the investigation told Bloomberg.

On Wednesday, Trump told The New York Times that Mueller would be crossing a red line if he expanded his investigation to look at Trump family finances beyond ties to Russia.

Bloomberg reported Thursday that investigators are examining Russian purchases of apartments in Trump buildings, Trump's involvement in a New York development with Russian associates in SoHo, the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow and Trump's 2008 sale of a Florida mansion to a Russian oligarch.

They are also looking into the Bank of Cyprus, where Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross served as the bank's vice chairman before taking his current role. Trump's son-in-law and aide, Jared Kushner, secured financing for some of his family's real estate properties through the bank, someone familiar with the inquiry told Bloomberg.

Trump attorney John Dowd told NBC "Today" show's Savannah Guthrie that the defense team is cooperating with Mueller.

"Bob Mueller is tops," he said. "We have an excellent relationship with him."

Earlier, he said he was unaware the special counsel was looking into the transactions mentioned in the Bloomberg report.

"Those transactions are in my view well beyond the mandate of the special counsel, are unrelated to the election of 2016 or any alleged collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia and most importantly, are well beyond any statute of limitation imposed by the United States Code," Dowd said.

Mueller's investigation is said to have stemmed from a money laundering investigation started by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, whom Trump fired in March, Bloomberg reported.

In the Times interview, Trump said an investigation into Trump family finances beyond Russia would be "a violation."

"Look, this is about Russia," Trump told the newspaper.

The Justice Department appointed Mueller as special counsel in May. That followed Trump's abrupt firing of James Comey as FBI director. The president later said he did so while thinking about the "Russia thing."

Trump has repeatedly called the Russia investigation a "witch hunt" and denied any collusion with Moscow.

WATCH: Trump expresses regret hiring AG Jeff Sessions

Source : http://www.cnbc.com/2017/07/20/trump-warns-mueller-against-looking-into-his-family-finances-apart-from-russia-investigation.html

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