Hillary Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann not guilty of lying to FBI

Hillary Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann not guilty of lying to FBI

A federal jury in Washington found Hillary Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann not guilty of lying to the FBI.

Prosecutors from Special Counsel John Durham's office had contended that Sussmann misrepresented himself during a meeting with the FBI's general counsel in 2016 in hopes of orchestrating an October surprise against Donald Trump.

The two-week trial was the first of its kind in Durham's three-year investigation into the origins of the Trump-Russia investigation.

Durham said in a statement that while we are disappointed in the outcome, we respect the jury decision and thank them for their service. I want to thank the investigators and the prosecution team for their dedication to finding truth and justice in this case. Durham didn't answer reporters' questions as he left the courthouse.

Sussmann told the media outside the court that he was grateful to be able to put the ordeal behind him.

Sussmann said I m relieved that justice ultimately prevailed in my case despite being falsely accused. But we are grateful for the love and support of so many during this ordeal. In closing arguments on Friday, Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Algor told jurors that Sussmann used his privilege as a high-powered Washington lawyer, former DOJ prosecutor and friend to bypass normal channels and to speed up a meeting with FBI's now former general counsel, James Baker.

Sussmann, a cybersecurity lawyer, provided Baker with obscure internet data indicating a possible communication channel between computer servers associated with the Trump Organization and Alfa Bank, Russia's largest commercial financial institution. Sussmann's concerns were later determined by the FBI.

The case centered around prosecutors who claimed that Sussmann told Baker he was passing on the information as a concerned citizen and not passing on behalf of any client. Algor told jurors that Sussmann was there on behalf of two clients - the Clinton campaign and Rodney Joffe, the technology executive who oversaw research into Alfa Bank.

Sussmann's lawyer Sean Berkowitz pointed out to jurors that Baker and others had conflicting information about what Sussman said in the meeting. Berkowitz said Sussmann was not acting on the campaign's behalf, particularly because the campaign mistrustful of the FBI over its well-publicized investigation into Clinton's emails.