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Trump's Son Met With Russian Lawyer To Get Damaging Intel On Hillary Clinton

10/07/2017 8:50 AM AEST | Updated 10/07/2017 7:07 PM AEST

The eldest son of President Donald Trump met with a lawyer connected to the Russian government under the impression that she had damaging information on Trump's presidential opponent Hillary Clinton, the New York Times reported Sunday.

Donald Trump Jr. initially claimed the meeting with Kremlin-linked lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya was simply to discuss an adoption program. But after further reporting, the Times discovered that Trump Jr. had been promised the information about Clinton before arranging the meeting.

On Saturday, the Times uncovered the meeting, which took place June 2016, the first confirmed meeting between Trump's inner circle and Russian figures during the presidential campaign, amid multiple investigations into whether Trump's campaign colluded with Russia.

The meeting was also attended by Trump's then-campaign chairman Paul Manafort and son-in-law Jared Kushner, now a senior White House adviser.

In a Sunday statement to several news organizations, including Reuters, Mark Corallo, a spokesman for Trump's outside legal team handling matters related to the Russia probes said that "the president was not aware of and did not attend the meeting."

Kushner has been under investigation after failing to disclose his own meetings with Russian officials during Trump's transition in December, and the Times found this new revelation through a revised version of a form that Kushner filled out to receive a government security clearance.

So far, the investigations into whether Trump campaign officials colluded with Russia have focused on more indirect campaign associates, including former advisers Carter Page and Roger Stone, and now-Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Trump's former national security adviser Michael Flynn resigned in February after misleading administration officials about the extent of his own interactions with Russian officials.

It is unknown whether Veselnitskaya, a lawyer who has represented Russian state-owned businesses and the son of senior Russian government official, actually had damaging information about Clinton, the Times reported.

Trump Jr. addressed the meeting in a statement Sunday.

"After pleasantries were exchanged, the woman stated that she had information that individuals connected to Russia were funding the Democratic National Committee and supporting Mrs. Clinton," the younger Trump said. "Her statements were vague, ambiguous and made no sense. No details or supporting information was provided or even offered. It quickly became clear that she had no meaningful information."

Read the Times' full report here.

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