While only seemingly playing a short and small role with the Trump campaign, one adviser named George Papadopoulos may end up being one of the biggest assets that the Special Counsel’s office has, when it comes to prosecuting various other campaign officials or even the President himself.
As you likely are already aware, Papadopoulos was arrested at Dulles Airport on July 27 of this year. What has been somewhat of a mystery is what happened right before the arrest and after it. Thanks to the unsealing of his indictment and plea agreement, the courts have just released an audio tape of George Papadopoulos’ arraignment on the day following his arrest, July 28. The tape, which is just over 6 minutes in length, reveals a few clues as to the actions the government took back in July.
“We were informed it had been moved to 3 o’clock. We apologize if we misunderstood that it had been rescheduled,” prosecutor Brandon Van Grack replied.
From there we learned numerous facts about the case. First of all, the arraignment took place the day after Papadopoulos was arrested at Dulles. He was initially charged with obstruction of justice and making false statements to officials, but the obstruction charge was dropped in October when Papadopoulos decided to plead guilty to making false statements. We also learned that the government never sought to detain Papadopoulos, who they clearly were trying to get back out in the public so that his arrest would not be noticed by other likely suspects. Papadopoulos’ passports were taken and he was instructed to stay away from anyone related to the case. The judge instructed the prosecution to provide a list of who those individuals may be, since Papadopoulos stated that he didn’t know who may or may not be connected to the case.
Knowing that this arraignment took place the way it did, indicates that his arrest was likely made in haste. Prosecutors did not have a warrant for his arrest on the 27th, nor did they have an indictment or even a criminal complaint against him. It wasn’t until the following morning, prior to the arraignment, that they obtained all these important documents.
As new court documents make their way into the public domain, we should begin to get a much clearer picture as to just what was going through Mueller and his prosecutors/investigators minds. Let’s hear your thoughts on this story in the comments section below.