WASHINGTON D.C.—Former Trump presidential campaign official Roger J. Stone was indicted by a federal grand jury this week and arrested during a pre-dawn FBI raid at his home in Florida. The charges relate to false and misleading statements Stone made to Congress and the FBI about his involvement in Wikileaks’ publication of emails that were stolen from the DNC and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign chairman John Podesta.
The key factual allegation against Stone is that in August 2016–while serving as an official on the Trump 2016 presidential campaign—he announced at Trump rallies and on Twitter that Wikileaks had Hillary Clinton’s e-mails.
When the House Intelligence Committee questioned Stone on how he learned that Wikileaks was going to release additional emails, Stone said that Jerome Corsi served as his intermediary to Wikileaks. The indictment alleges, however, that Stone’s actual source was Steve Bannon, whom the indictment refers to as “Person 1.”
Stone’s communications with Corsi about Wikileaks allegedly began in late August 2016—weeks after Stone had already disseminated publically that Wikileaks was in possession of the stolen emails.
The indictment reveals Stone had used Jerome Corsi as a straw man to divert attention away from Stone’s and Bannon’s efforts to directly coordinate the release of stolen emails with Wikileaks’ Julian Assange.
The indictment specifies Stone had lied to the House Intelligence Committee about:
- The existence of documents in his posession that are related to the investigation into Russian interference;
- Who the real source of his information about Wikileaks was in August 2016 (i.e. Steve Bannon, not Jerome Corsi);
- Making requests to Julian Assange to publish specific emails concerning the Clinton Foundation;
- The true nature of his communications with Jerome Corsi; and
- His communications with the Trump Campaign regarding Wikileaks.
A timeline of Roger Stone’s involvement with Wikileaks
03/10/16 — * Russian hackers target Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign with phishing malware.
03/00/16 — * Paul Manafort visits Julian Assange, who lives in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.
07/22/16 — Wikileaks publishes the DNC’s stolen emails.
07/25/16 — Stone tells Bannon to get to Julian Assange about the pending emails that deal with the Clinton Foundation.
07/31/16 — Stone emails Bannon that Bannon’s associate in the UK should see Julian Assange.
08/02/16 — Bannon emails Stone from Europe and planned to return in mid-August. Bannon explains to Stone that Julian Assange plans 2 more email dumps. One after Bannon returns to the US and one in October. Bannon writes “Impact planned to be very damaging.” Bannon also writes, “Time to let more than [the Clinton Campaign chairman] to be exposed as in bed w enemy if they are not ready to drop HRC. That appears to be the game hackers are now about. Would not hurt to start suggesting HRC old, memory bad, has stoke—neither he nor she well. I expect that much of the next dump focus, setting stage for Foundation debacle.”
08/08/16 — Stone begins publically announcing that he is in communication with Julian Assange and believes Wikileaks’ next email dump will pertain to the Clinton Foundation, “but there’s no telling what the October surprise may be.”
08/11/16 — * Stone tweets: “Hillary’s e-mails like Nixon’s tapes- proof of cirminal activity. @wikileaks has them. America will have them soon.”
08/15/16 — * Pamela Anderson visits Julian Assange
08/19/16 — * Stone tweets: “Perhaps @wikileaks will dump the Clintons e-mails on the rapist’s 70th birthday?”
08/19/16 — Stone starts communicating with Jerome Corsi about Wikileaks and Julian Assange’s plans.
08/25/16 — Jerome Corsi interviews Julian Assange on the radio.
09/06/16 — * Stone tweets: “Wikileaks will soon solve that problem #busted #Redhanded #jailtime.” And “The @ClintonFdn is a slush fund for these grifters—as Wikileaks will soon prove!”
10/04/16 — A high-ranking Trump Campaign official asks Stone about the status of Wikileaks’ furture email dumps. Stone explains that Julian Assange has a “[s]eriours security concern” but Wikileaks would release “a load every week going forward.”
10/07/16 — Wikileaks releases the first set of emails stolen from John Podesta and a high-ranking Trump Campaign official texts Stone “well done.”
05/00/17 — The House Intelligence Committee requests Stone produce documents relating to Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign.
05/22/17 — Stone sends a letter to the House Intelligence Committee stating that he has no responsive documents.
09/27/17 — Stone testifies before the House Intelligence Committee that he did not have advanced knowledge of the source or actual content of Wikileaks’ disclosures regarding Hillary Clinton. Stone allegedly lies about the source of his August 2016 statements about Wikileaks, his communications with Jerome Coris, and his communications with the Trump Campaign about Wikileaks.
00/00/00 — Stone sends an excerpt of his letter to the House Intelligence Committee to Jerome Corsi and asks him to falsely confirm what Stone had previously testified to.
11/00/17 — Jerome Corsi’s lawyer asks to see Stone about Corsi’s forthcoming testimony before the House Intelligence Committee. Stone replies, “Stonewall it. Plead the fifth. Anything to save the plan’ . . . Richard Nixon.”
* – indicates facts not included in Roger Stone’s indictment but verified through multiple other sources to provide context