The Russian lawyer who met with Donald Trump, Jr. and others at Trump Tower during the 2016 campaign, has revealed that she has ties to the Russian government than she previously admitted.
And in an interview set to be broadcast by NBC News on Friday, Natalia Veselnitskaya calls herself an “informant” for the Russian government, an admission that goes further than her previous claims of just being a private attorney.
“I am a lawyer, and I am an informant,” she says in the NBC interview, according to The New York Times. “Since 2013, I have been actively communicating with the office of the Russian prosecutor general.”
The admission also comes despite testimony she submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee in November, in which she claimed no connection to Vladimir Putin’s government.
The Times also reported that Veselnitskaya worked for Russia’s chief legal office against the U.S. Justice Department in a fraud case targeting a top Russian firm with government connections.
Friday’s reports raises new questions about the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting attended by Trump Jr., Paul Manafort and Jared Kushner and whether that meeting had connections to Russia’s government that were previously unknown.
Rob Goldstone, a British music producer who set up the meeting between Trump Jr. and Veselnitskaya, told Trump Jr. that the information the lawyer could provide was “part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump.”
“If it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer,” Trump Jr. replied to Goldstone in one email, according to the report.
The report is highly significant as it could bring collusion charges to the forefront of the Russia investigation.