Jared Kushner didn't disclose contact with a Russian mafia 'godfather' to Congress

A. Pineiro  CC BY 2.0

Senate judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley and ranking member Dianne Feinstein sent a letter Thursday requesting more information on President Donald Trump's son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner related to his security clearance and questions over whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russian Federation in the 2016 election.

A source familiar with the document request says the "dinner invite" referred to an email requesting a meeting with a man named Alexander Torshin and a woman reported to be Torshin's assistant, Maria Butina. Kushner "rebuffed the request after receiving a lengthy email exchange about it".

The two senators specifically requested "transcripts from other committee interviews, additional documents from previous requests, communications with (former national security adviser) Michael Flynn and documents related to his security clearance", according to their statement.

In the letter, Grassley and Feinstein instruct Kushner's team to turn over "several documents that are known to exist" because other witnesses in their probe already gave them to investigators. Dianne Feinstein of California, the committee's top Democrat, said that others had provided documents showing "September 2016 email communications to Mr. Kushner concerning WikiLeaks, which?r. Kushner then forwarded to another campaign official".

He has been given a deadline of 27 November to hand over the rest of the information.

Committee leaders also said Kushner had left out "documents concerning a "Russian backdoor overture and dinner invite" " that Kushner had also forwarded to other campaign officials.

Kushner's lawyer Abbe Lowell, to whom the senators' letter was addressed, responded in a statement that said he provided Senate investigators with "all relevant documents".

Grassley and Feinstein also wrote that Kushner's team "should produce" his SF-86 security clearance forms, which Kushner had to update on more than one occasion because he left out contacts with foreign individuals.

"We appreciate your voluntary cooperation with the committee's investigation, but the production appears to have been incomplete", the letter said.

Kushner was interviewed behind closed doors before both the Senate and House intelligence panels in July, following the disclosure of the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting attended by Kushner, Trump Jr., Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and a Russian lawyer who was expected to offer dirt on Hillary Clinton.

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