WASHINGTON, DC – George Papadopoulos, who had served as a foreign policy advisor for Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign, had also told Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias (at the end of May 2016) that a mysterious Russian professor had revealed that the Russians had Hillary Clinton’s emails in their possession.
This claim was made by Papadopoulos during an interview on September 9 with Greek-American journalist, George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s This Week, as well as on a CNN broadcast on September 7. As it turns out, this disclosure had been made by his lawyers and in the memorandum they filed a week before in court.
Papadopoulos, however, claims he does not remember informing anyone in Donald Trump’s campaign about the information provided by Professor Joseph Mifsud.
On This Week, Papadopoulos did not mention Kotzias by name, but referred to him as the “Greek Foreign Minister,” admitting he told him about Hillary Clinton’s emails allegedly held by the Russians and though he met with Australian diplomat Alexander Downer in London he could not recollect sharing the information about the emails with Downer. The Australian diplomat’s name is not included in the memorandum filed by Papadopoulos’ lawyers.
It is unknown whether Greek Foreign Minister Kotzias shared the information elsewhere. The fact that Papadopoulos remembers telling Kotzias about the information from Mifsud and meeting with Downer but not sharing the information with any official of the Trump campaign raises many questions.
It is noted that on September 7, Papadopoulos was sentenced to 14 days in prison for lying to the FBI. Papadopoulos was the first to be arrested by the special counsel, Robert Mueller, and plead guilty for his involvement in the probe of Russian officials tampering in the United States presidential election.
Mueller’s team of prosecutors was demanding six months imprisonment for Papadopoulos, while his defense attorneys asked for probation only. Andrew Goldstein of the special counsel’s office said Papadopoulos “chose to lie again and again to advance his personal interests,” and his lies were “purposeful, calculated and caused harm to the investigation,” ABC News reported, adding that as a result of the “deliberate lies,” FBI agents had to “painstakingly piece together facts” by going through “100,000 emails and eight gigabytes of data.”
U.S. District Court Judge Randolph D. Moss said during the sentencing that Papadopoulos lied to “place his own personal ambitions above the interests of the United States,” ABC News reported.
It should be noted that in the interview with Stephanopoulos, Papadopoulos appeared with his wife, Simona Mangiante, who admitted that special counsel Mueller’s investigating team suspected that she might be a Russian spy.
In the interview, Stephanopoulos asked, “You were questioned, as well, by Robert Mueller’s team and from the start, they suspected you were a Russian agent. How did that manifest itself?”
Mangiante replied, “I come from a political background myself. I used to work as a diplomat at the European Parliament for a few years and this could be a red flag because many officials at European Union actually — it’s a cover-up for spy jobs,” ABC News reported
She added, “Of course this connection was highly suspicious. I respect the, I always said I respect Mueller’s interest in my profile because clearly it’s quite alarming, the fact that I marry George Papadopoulos in the middle of this storm.”
After serving his 14-day sentence, Papadopoulos plans on writing a book while his wife noted that she is ready to start a family after the couple relocates to California.