George Papadopoulos says Jeff Sessions 'quite enthusiastic' about Trump-Putin summit

AFP  Getty Images

AFP Getty Images

The defense portrayed Papadopoulos, who served as a foreign policy adviser to President Trump's campaign, as an eager aide who was in over his head, and pushed back on claims by the prosecution that he had harmed the FBI investigation.

He then said that after he applied to work on Trump's campaign, his employer at the time - the London Center of International Law Practice - sent him to Rome, where he encountered the professor, Joseph Misfud.

Papadopoulos said he brought up the idea of setting up a meeting between Trump and Putin at a campaign meeting on March 31, 2016, and that there were mixed reactions.

"All I can say is this was a meeting from about two years ago - my recollection differs from Jeff Sessions'", Mr. Papadopoulos said.

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Memos authored by House Republicans and Democrats, now declassified, show that information about Papadopoulos' contacts with Russian intermediaries triggered the FBI's counterintelligence investigation in July 2016 into potential coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign. "He was open to the idea and he deferred" to Sessions, then a US senator from Alabama who was advising the campaign.

Papadopoulos was the first Trump campaign adviser arrested as part of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling and possible collusion in the 2016 campaign.

"I didn't plead guilty to collusion, I've pled guilty to lying", Papadopoulos, the former Trump campaign adviser, told Sean Hannity Tuesday night.

Papadopoulos repeated that assessment of Sessions' enthusiasm on other networks as well. "And he told me, 'I have information that the Russians have thousands of Hillary Clinton's emails'".

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"That's the biggest regret I actually have out of this whole situation", he told the panelists, "was that instead of, you know, allegedly gossiping about it with the Australian Downer, which I have no recollection of doing, and I remember speaking about it with the Greek foreign minister, instead of gossiping and doing what I was doing, I should have gone to the Federal Bureau of Investigation or the US embassy".

Papadopoulos admitted that he lied to FBI investigators when they interviewed him on January 27, 2017.

"I don't know Papadopoulos, I don't know", Mr. Trump told reporters Friday.

"I'm saying I have no recollection of doing it", Papadopoulos replied.

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While Papadopoulos is planning a move to California to begin his new life supporting his wife's fledgling acting career, he may not be entirely finished with the investigations that led him to prison. His case was also the first to detail a member of the Trump campaign having knowledge of Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election while it was ongoing. "I can't guarantee. All I can say is, my memory is telling me that I never shared it with anyone on the campaign".

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