Federal investigators subpoena personal aide to Trump: report


Federal prosecutors have reportedly issued a subpoena to a personal aide of former President Donald Trump as an investigation into the post-2020 election period reaches deeper into the ex-president’s orbit.

The investigators’ interest in William S. Russell, a special assistant and the deputy director of presidential advance operations in the White House, is tied to a grand jury probe of the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol and events around it, according to a New York Times report.

Mr. Russell continued to work for Mr. Trump as a personal aide after he left office.

It is unclear what prosecutors want to learn from the aide, but it’s another sign the probe is expanding. The investigation appears to focus on so-called fake electors who would have played a role in blocking the certification of Electoral College votes for President Biden from swing states.

Top aides to former Vice President Mike Pence have been called before the grand jury. Former White House Counsel Pat A. Cipollone and his former deputy, Patrick Philbin, have appeared before the panel after having a front-row seat to action at the White House on or around Jan. 6.

Before the Capitol riot, Mr. Trump blasted Mr. Pence for fulfilling his role in certifying the electoral votes for Mr. Biden.

Neither the FBI nor Mr. Russell’s attorney commented to the Times report.

The federal probe is unfolding alongside drama over the FBI raid on Mr. Trump’s estate in South Florida. A federal judge approved the appointment of a special master to review documents taken from Mar-a-Lago, which could delay the investigation into why classified documents were stored at the estate.


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