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04 December 2017, 12:54 | Rufus Hill
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Veteran FBI agent Peter Strzok assigned to special counsel Robert S Mueller III has been removed from the latter's probe into Russian interference in the 2016 US Presidential election. He helped lead the investigation into whether Hillary Clinton mishandled classified information on her private email account, and then played a major role in the investigation into links between President Trump's campaign and Russian Federation.
"Immediately upon learning of the allegations, the Special Counsel's Office removed Peter Strzok from the investigation", said Peter Carr, a spokesman for the special counsel's office.
During the Clinton investigation, Strzok was involved in a romantic relationship with FBI lawyer Lisa Page, who worked for Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, according to the people familiar with the matter, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue. A review of the texts is now underway to determine whether the two agents allowed political bias to influence their work, but regardless of what that investigation concludes, the story is sure to provide ammunition for those, like President Trump and his defenders, who have accused the Mueller investigation, FBI, and overall intelligence community of being driven by partisanship.
The Post has repeatedly sought comment from Strzok and Page, but got no response.
Justice Department spokeswoman Sara Isgur Flores said in an email that "we disagree with the chairman's characterization and will continue to work with congressional committees to provide the information they request consistent with our national security responsibilities". Rumors over the cause of Strzok's removal have swirled for months. When Mr. Trump fired his F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, in May, he initially cited his handling of the Clinton email investigation as the reason for his dismissal. Nunes and other committee Republicans - backed by Speaker Paul Ryan - say they want to investigate whether the Justice Department and FBI may have improperly relied on the dossier to kick-start federal surveillance that caught up Trump associates, without independently confirming the information they used to justify such spying.
Robert Mueller removed an FBI agent from his investigation into alleged Russian election meddling, people briefed on the matter told United States media. Of the four, two have pled guilty to lying to the FBI - Flynn and a former Trump campaign adviser.
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