The US Senate Judiciary Committee has sought permission to interview an informant of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) who helped uncover an alleged Russian nuclear bribery case that also involves former US Secretary of state Hillary Clinton.
The unidentified informant worked with the FBI for five years to put together a case that forced Russia’s top nuclear industry officials in the US, a Russian financier and an US trucking executive to plead guilty in 2015 to charges related to a racketeering scheme that, according to prosecutors, involved bribery, kickbacks, extortion and money laundering.
The informant is suspected of possessing data about the extent of Russia’s power in currying favors among US officials, however, his lawyer Victoria Toensing told The Hill earlier this week that he was unable to disclose what he knew because of a nondisclosure statement he had signed with the FBI.
Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley, (R-Iowa), sent a letter Wednesday night to Toensing seeking to interview her client about former President Barack Obama’s approval of a controversial deal in 2010 that gave Russia control over 20 percent of America’s uranium supply.
The deal was struck between Russia’s Rosatom and Canadian mining company Uranium One, which had “control of one-fifth of all uranium production capacity in the United States
,” according to a 2016 report by The New York Times
“It appears that your client possesses unique information about the Uranium One/Rosatom transaction and how the Justice Department handled the criminal investigation into the Russian criminal conspiracy,” Grassley wrote to Toensing. “Such information is critical to the Committee’s oversight of the Justice Department.”
Because of uranium’s strategic nature, the deal had to be signed off by several federal government committees, including the State Department, which was then run by Hillary Clinton.
According to the Times, during Russia’s gradual takeover of the mines between 2009 and 2013, Canadian records showed that Uranium One chairman’s family foundation donated a total of $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation.
Shortly after the deal, Hillary’s husband, former US President Bill Clinton, gave a speech in Russia for a hefty $500,000 paid by a Russian investment bank that promoted Uranium One stock at the time, the daily noted.