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Tuesday, Feb 07th

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How Barr’s Quest to Find Flaws in the Russia Inquiry Unraveled

John DurhamIt became a regular litany of grievances from President Donald J. Trump and his supporters: The investigation into his 2016 campaign’s ties to Russia was a witch hunt, they maintained, that had been opened without any solid basis, went on too long and found no proof of collusion.

Egged on by Mr. Trump, Attorney General William P. Barr set out in 2019 to dig into their shared theory that the Russia investigation likely stemmed from a conspiracy by intelligence or law enforcement agencies. To lead the inquiry, Mr. Barr turned to a hard-nosed prosecutor named John H. Durham, and later granted him special counsel status to carry on after Mr. Trump left office.

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Trump’s Facebook, Instagram account to be reinstated

Trump's Facebook, Instagrams accounts reinstated

Former President Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts will be reinstated in the coming weeks, according to the platforms’ parent company Meta.

Meta handed down a two year ban on Trump’s accounts in the wake of the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, a suspension that the company called “unprecedented.”

Now it will unlock the accounts in the coming weeks, but will apply heightened penalties for future offenses of its user guidelines, according to a release from the company on Wednesday.

Meta’s President for Global Affairs Nick Clegg said on Twitter after the announcement that the company had needed to determine whether the public risk that had surfaced on Jan. 6, 2021, had receded enough to allow Trump back onto the platform.

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Trump tries to intervene as Navarro faces trial for defying Jan. 6 committee

Trump tries to intervene in Navarro trial

Donald Trump is once again making a last-ditch bid to help a former aide avoid prosecution for defying the Jan. 6 select committee.

A lawyer for Trump issued a letter this week endorsing the decision by former White House adviser Peter Navarro to blow off a subpoena from the Jan. 6 select committee by making blanket claims of executive privilege.

The Jan. 23 letter, filed in federal court, comes less than a week before Navarro is slated to go to trial for contempt of Congress for refusing to appear before the select committee last year.

“This confirms President Trump’s position that, as one of his senior advisors, you had an obligation to assert executive privilege on his behalf and fully comply with the principles of confidentiality stated above when you responded to the Committee’s subpoena,” the attorney, Evan Corcoran, wrote on Trump’s behalf.

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Capitol rioter who yelled threats toward Pelosi convicted of felony, misdemeanor charges

Capitol rioter convicted A woman who yelled threats directed at former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) as she and others stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, was found guilty Tuesday of multiple charges related to her actions that day.

A release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia states that Pauline Bauer, a 55-year-old resident of Kane, Pa., was convicted of nearly half a dozen charges for her role in the insurrection, including obstruction of an official proceeding, entering and remaining in a restricted building and disorderly or disruptive conduct in a restricted building.

U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden also found her guilty of disorderly and disruptive conduct in any of the Capitol buildings with intent to impede, disrupt and disturb a session of Congress and parading, demonstrating and picketing in a Capitol building.

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Classified Documents Found At Mike Pence's Home

Mike PemceDocuments with classified markings were discovered in former Vice President Mike Pence's Indiana Home last week, according to his attorney.

“The additional records appear to be a small number of documents bearing classified markings that were inadvertently boxed and transported to the personal home of the former Vice President at the end of the last Administration," Pence's lawyer, Greg Jacob, told the National Archives in a letter last week.

He said that “Pence was unaware of the existence of sensitive or classified documents at his personal residence” and that he "understands the high importance of protecting sensitive and classified information and stands ready and willing to cooperate fully with the National Archives and any appropriate inquiry."

A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment Tuesday, and a lawyer for Pence did not immediately respond to an email seeking further elaboration.

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Tyre Nichols was 'defenseless' during his 'savage' beating by police, attorneys say

Tyre Nichols' mother

Tyre Nichols was "defenseless" during the "savage" beating by Memphis police officers that preceded his death earlier this month, attorneys for his family said at a Monday press conference.

Earlier in the day, law enforcement officials privately met with Nichols' family members and their attorneys to show them video footage of the police stop, which has not yet been released to the public.

Attorney Antonio Romanucci described a violent scene. "He was a human piñata for those police officers," Romanucci said. "It was an unadulterated, unabashed nonstop beating of this young boy for three minutes."

Attorney Ben Crump said the video reminded him of the infamous video of Los Angeles police beating Rodney King in 1991.

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Charles McGonigal, ex-FBI official linked to Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, arrested

Oleg Deripaska

Working with an agent for Deripaska, McGonigal and Shestakov sought to hide Deripaska’s involvement by using shell companies and forged signatures on contract documents. The shell companies were allegedly used to send and receive payments from Deripaska, federal prosecutors said.

In September, the Justice Department announced charges against the Deripaska, a close associate of Russian President Vladimir Putin, accusing him of using a web of shell companies to disguise millions of dollars in prohibited business transactions, including the $3 million sale of a California music studio in 2019.

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