Internal DOJ watchdog: Russia probe properly started by FBI

Internal DOJ watchdog: Russia probe properly started by FBI

In a long awaited report on the origins of the Russia investigation, the Inspector General of the Department of Justice concluded on Monday that the 2016 investigation of possible Russian election interference was properly undertaken by the FBI, saying there was no evidence the Trump Campaign had been spied upon by investigators.

The 476 page report found that 'Crossfire Hurricane' - the code name for the original Russia investigation - "was opened for an authorized investigative purpose and with sufficient factual predication."

Pushing back against claims that the FBI had illegally spied on the Trump campaign, the IG report found 'no evidence that the FBI placed any' confidential human sources 'to report on the Trump campaign.'

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The IG report confirmed that the decision to start the investigation had been spurred by revelations from an Australian diplomat, who had been told early in 2016 by Trump foreign policy aide George Papadopoulos that the Russians had 'dirt' on Hillary Clinton.

The report also indicated that even before the formal investigation was undertaken, the FBI was already looking carefully at Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort, and Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Page.

Both men had known ties to people suspected of being involved with Russian Intelligence.