SEVERE WX : Winter Weather Advisory View Alerts
CLOSINGS: View Closings

Stone's finances examined by special counsel

Special counsel Robert Mueller's team has been probing Roger Stone's finances as it summons a series of witnesses to gather more information about one of President Donald Trump's longtime advisers, according to people familiar with the situation. CNN's Sara Murray reports.

Posted: May 25, 2018 1:04 PM
Updated: May 25, 2018 1:04 PM

Special counsel Robert Mueller's team has been probing Roger Stone's finances as it summons a series of witnesses to gather more information about one of President Donald Trump's longtime advisers, according to people familiar with the situation.

Mueller's team has questioned associates about Stone's finances, including his tax returns.

The special counsel recently subpoenaed John P. Kakanis, who has worked as Stone's assistant and has insight into some of Stone's business deals, according to a person familiar with the situation. Reuters first reported on the subpoena.

Stone has insisted he played no role in colluding with Russians. Stone also said he has not been contacted by the special counsel's office.

The interest in Stone's finances could be tied to Mueller's charge of investigating Russian meddling in the 2016 election and potential collusion, though another possibility is Mueller is pursuing something unrelated that turned up in the course of the investigation.

"The normal thing for a prosecutor in the course of your investigation is if you come across something that is itself worthy of criminal investigation, you don't turn a blind eye to it. You investigate," said CNN legal analyst Michael Zeldin, a former assistant to Mueller.

Whatever the reasoning, the probe into Stone's finances should give him cause for concern, Zeldin said.

Stone appears to recognize that.

"The special counsel having found no evidence or proof whatsoever of Russian collusion, trafficking in allegedly hacked emails with WikiLeaks or advance knowledge of the publication of (then-Clinton campaign chair John) Podesta's emails now seems to be combing through every molecule of my existence including my personal life, political activities and business affairs to conjure up some offense to charge me with either to silence me or induce me to testify against the President," Stone told CNN. "I have no intention of being silenced or turning my back on President Trump."

The questions about Stone's finances have some of his allies claiming that Mueller has overstepped his mandate and is simply looking to take down one of the President's longtime allies.

"They are trying to go after Roger's finances, to get another ridiculous indictment that has nothing to do with Russia," said Sam Nunberg, a former Trump campaign aide who worked with Stone on the early stages of Trump's presidential bid and has been questioned by Mueller's team as well as the grand jury.

Nunberg pointed to the charges Mueller's team has brought against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort for alleged financial crimes unrelated to his work on the Trump campaign. He also noted the raid on the home, office and hotel room of Michael Cohen, Trump's longtime personal attorney. The raid and related criminal investigation are being carried out by the Southern District of New York, but were referred there by Mueller's team.

"If they want to continue to go after non-related financial matters where they're picking apart associates of the President, then by all means," Nunberg said. "Because they continue to delegitimize themselves and whatever they ultimately release in their findings."

But Mueller's mandate when he was first appointed specifically gives him the authority to investigate "any matters that arose or may arise" directly from the Russia probe.

So far, Mueller's team has contacted at least eight of Stone's current or former associates, Stone told NBC News on Sunday. He subsequently told CNN "they are all young people who have no knowledge about my personal, political or business activities."

Some of those names are still unknown, and Stone declined to provide them. In addition to subpoenaing Kakanis, Mueller's team subpoenaed Jason Sullivan, Stone's former social media adviser, to appear before the grand jury.

"Jason has done nothing wrong and done everything right, and he's terrific at what he did," said Knut Johnson, Sullivan's lawyer.

The special counsel's office declined to comment. A lawyer for Kakanis did not respond to requests for comment.

The special counsel's office has already interviewed Nunberg and former Trump campaign adviser Michael Caputo. Both men were pressed for information regarding Stone in their interviews, according to people familiar with the questioning.

Stone has come under public scrutiny, in part, because of a prescient prediction during the 2016 campaign. In a now-infamous tweet, Stone predicted trouble for Podesta, weeks before WikiLeaks began releasing thousands of Podesta's emails. Stone denies having any advance knowledge of the Podesta leaks.

The US intelligence community concluded in January 2017 that Russian intelligence hacked the Democratic National Committee along with senior Democratic officials and provided the stolen material to WikiLeaks as part of Moscow's effort to damage Hillary Clinton and sway the election in favor of Trump. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has denied that the Russian government provided the hacked emails.

"I sleep well at night because I know what I have and have not done," Stone told CNN. "There's no inappropriate activity pertaining to Russian collusion. I obtained nothing from WikiLeaks or Julian Assange. I never passed anything on to WikiLeaks or Julian Assange."

As Mueller's team investigates Russian interference in the 2016 election and potential collusion between Trump associates and the Russian government, people familiar with the probe have expected Mueller to eventually bring charges related to the Russian hacking of the DNC and Democratic officials.

A self-proclaimed "dirty trickster," Stone cut his teeth in politics on Richard Nixon's 1972 re-election campaign and made a career of political consulting and lobbying.

Even after he officially parted ways with Trump's presidential campaign in its early days, Stone remained a staunch supporter and friend of Trump's. During the campaign, he launched a pro-Trump super PAC called Committee to Restore America's Greatness.

Now, the interest in Stone's finances has created a new sense of alarm among his associates.

"The special counsel is going to be woefully disappointed when they find out they have absolutely no proof and Roger Stone did not collude with Russians. But that will not stop them from creating a crime simply because he's close to the President of the United States," Caputo said in an interview. "This is a punishment strategy."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 270157

Reported Deaths: 3297
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin579261084
Ramsey24528470
Anoka19211213
Dakota18738176
Washington12351104
Stearns1200389
Scott735654
St. Louis712297
Wright646135
Olmsted604730
Sherburne499538
Clay435954
Carver397312
Blue Earth367011
Rice350331
Kandiyohi337613
Crow Wing306729
Nobles293828
Chisago27778
Benton256338
Otter Tail251415
Winona240928
Mower232822
Polk222221
Douglas211929
Morrison207521
Lyon189810
McLeod18089
Beltrami177115
Goodhue173126
Becker16769
Itasca165223
Steele16396
Todd161412
Isanti159115
Carlton148310
Nicollet144523
Freeborn13625
Mille Lacs129030
Le Sueur12899
Waseca128710
Pine11625
Cass11538
Brown112610
Meeker10117
Martin97020
Roseau9443
Hubbard92822
Wabasha8961
Dodge7770
Watonwan7604
Redwood75118
Chippewa7437
Renville68818
Sibley6844
Cottonwood6800
Wadena6706
Pipestone65618
Aitkin64722
Rock6259
Houston6012
Fillmore5910
Yellow Medicine55310
Unassigned52756
Murray5173
Pennington5076
Kanabec49711
Swift4835
Faribault4650
Pope4620
Stevens4342
Clearwater4156
Marshall4047
Jackson3981
Lake3463
Koochiching3275
Wilkin3175
Lac qui Parle3123
Lincoln3081
Norman3006
Big Stone2711
Mahnomen2404
Grant2256
Red Lake1833
Kittson1786
Traverse1190
Lake of the Woods821
Cook570

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 210482

Reported Deaths: 2173
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk31270322
Linn13252158
Scott1022075
Black Hawk10209126
Woodbury9870111
Johnson900835
Dubuque866490
Story637819
Dallas595555
Pottawattamie574666
Sioux349925
Webster330928
Marshall327841
Cerro Gordo323041
Clinton303637
Buena Vista290214
Muscatine266964
Des Moines266116
Plymouth257937
Warren254610
Wapello239971
Jones221112
Jasper202739
Marion191518
Carroll188220
Lee188015
Bremer176012
Henry16847
Crawford168215
Benton157414
Tama145140
Jackson13608
Delaware134721
Boone127711
Washington126513
Dickinson126210
Mahaska119027
Wright11425
Buchanan10789
Page10774
Hardin105810
Clay10434
Harrison101428
Clayton10084
Cedar98913
Hamilton9877
Mills9806
Calhoun9787
Fayette9588
Lyon9458
Floyd92614
Kossuth9214
Poweshiek91512
Butler8943
Winneshiek88910
Winnebago87423
Iowa86711
Louisa79916
Hancock7947
Chickasaw7853
Grundy77310
Sac7617
Cherokee7484
Cass73519
Appanoose7336
Shelby7184
Allamakee71111
Mitchell7074
Emmet70123
Guthrie69215
Union6866
Franklin67619
Humboldt6495
Madison6414
Jefferson6121
Palo Alto6044
Unassigned5810
Keokuk5237
Pocahontas5072
Howard4999
Osceola4941
Greene4860
Clarke4564
Ida42810
Monroe42812
Montgomery42610
Davis4225
Taylor4162
Adair4066
Monona3912
Fremont3432
Worth3330
Van Buren3294
Lucas3056
Decatur2950
Wayne2836
Audubon2811
Ringgold1832
Adams1521
Rochester
Overcast
30° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 21°
Mason City
Overcast
33° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 24°
Albert Lea
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 38° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 24°
Austin
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 32°
Feels Like: 28°
Charles City
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 25°
Rain and Snow Moving In For Tuesday
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

TIC preseason projections

Image

Austin Bruins announce weekend plans

Image

Teams begin to navigate the pause on sports

Image

Rochester to Create Liquor License Fee Relief Program

Image

A "Thank You" to health care workers

Image

Business operators react to Governor's latest plans

Image

Aaron's Monday Evening Forecast

Image

Food insecurity in younger adults.

Image

Food insecurity survey with University of Minnesota

Image

Teen organizes Thanksgiving meals, helping 100 families

Community Events