January 24, 2023

FBI Russia Hoaxer Arrested for Russian Graft

Charles McGonigal was the one colluding with Russia, not Donald Trump, whom he was investigating.

Call out if you had “FBI agent colludes with Russia” on your BINGO card.

Charles McGonigal isn’t a household name, but maybe he should be. The former FBI section chief was instrumental in launching Crossfire Hurricane, the FBI probe into whether candidate Donald Trump colluded with Russia to win the 2016 election. Naturally, the one who actually colluded with Russia was McGonigal.

On Monday, the Justice Department announced that McGonigal has been charged with “violating and conspiring to violate” U.S. sanctions on Russia, as well as “conspiring to commit money laundering and money laundering.” Essentially, McGonigal and Sergey Shestakov, “a former Soviet and Russian diplomat” who’s now a U.S. citizen and interpreter for federal courts, provided rather lucrative “services to Oleg Deripaska, a sanctioned Russian oligarch” and used a shell company to hide it. The services: Trying to get Deripaska removed from the sanctions list.

That’s an odd thing to do for an FBI agent tasked with investigating corrupt Russian oligarchs. Especially an FBI agent who was investigating a presidential candidate for colluding with Russia based on Hillary Clinton’s concocted “intelligence.”

Indeed, McGonigal wasn’t one of the many lower-level FBI agents who perform their jobs with integrity every day. He was the special agent in charge of the Counterintelligence Division of the FBI’s New York Field Office, and he made important decisions regarding investigations and targets. Worse, he was specifically working for the very guy — Deripaska — who was also employing the services of Christopher Steele, the author of the phony dossier on Trump upon which Crossfire Hurricane was largely based.

Also in that orb? Retired Justice Department official Bruce Ohr, the Russia hoax player whose wife worked for Fusion GPS, the outfit that helped launder the money from Clinton’s campaign to Steele. Ohr tried to get the FBI to work with Deripaska based on Steele’s “intel.”

Oh what a tangled web.

FBI Director Christopher Wray tried mightily to untangle that web. “The way we maintain the trust and confidence of the American people is through our work — showing, when all the facts come out, that we stuck to the process and we treated everyone equally, even when it is one of our own,” Wray said. “We hold ourselves to the highest standard, and our focus will remain on our mission and on doing the right thing, in the right way, every time.”

We and many other advocates of Rule of Law would be glad to believe him, except we know all too well how that statement flies in the face of reality given the FBI’s involvement in the Russian collusion delusion conjured up against Trump. That abject hypocrisy should be the focus of the coverage of McGonigal’s arrest and prosecution.

Trust the FBI? That ship has sailed.

Also note again that this drama comes on the heels of the disparity in how the cases of mishandling classified material have been handled. Hillary Clinton was both “investigated” and somehow absolved by the FBI. That same FBI waged a multiyear war against Donald Trump, leading to his Secret Service-protected home being raided last fall. Joe Biden, by contrast, benefited from FBI interference in the 2020 election to hide his corruption, and since then he’s managed to dodge the FBI over his own classified docs scandal.

The two-tiered justice and deep corruption within the FBI is mind-boggling, and it’s also the clear intent of many players in what we’ve come to know as the deep state. McGonigal seems to have been one of those bad actors, and we hope justice is served.

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