New emails show George Papadopoulos communicated with Michael Flynn and Steve Bannon during Trump's 2016 campaign

  • Former Trump campaign foreign-policy adviser George Papadopoulos reportedly communicated with former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon and former national-security adviser Michael Flynn during the 2016 campaign.
  • The White House has sought to distance itself from Papadopoulos since he pleaded guilty in the Russia investigation last year, calling him a "coffee boy" with little access to the top ranks of the campaign.
  • But new emails obtained by The Washington Post indicate that top campaign officials — in addition to those listed in previous court filings — knew of and encouraged Papadopoulos' actions and outreach during the campaign to foreign officials.

Previously-undisclosed emails described to The Washington Post indicate that George Papadopoulos, the early Trump campaign foreign-policy adviser who pleaded guilty in the Russia investigation last year, was in more frequent contact with top campaign officials than has been reported.

Papadopoulos pleaded guilty in October to one count of making false statements to investigators about his contacts with Russia-linked individuals. The emails that were described to The Post are in the special counsel Robert Mueller's possession.

Papadopoulos is known to have been in contact via email with several key campaign officials, including former chairman Paul Manafort, former co-chairman Sam Clovis, former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, and an unidentified "high-ranking" campaign official.

5 PHOTOS
Trump campaign officials George Papadopoulos reportedly communicated with
See Gallery
Trump campaign officials George Papadopoulos reportedly communicated with

Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort

(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon

(REUTERS/Moritz Hager)

Former U.S. National Security Adviser Michael Flynn

(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

Former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

Former member of the Trump campaign Sam Clovis

(Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

But according to The Post's report Friday, Papadopoulos was also in touch with former campaign CEO and later White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, and campaign advise, and later national-security adviser Michael Flynn.

In one email around late September or early October 2016, Papadopoulos told Bannon he was receiving messages from the Egyptian embassy about organizing a meeting between Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi and then candidate Trump. Papadopoulos was the first individual to alert the campaign to Egypt's interest in a meeting with Trump.

Bannon reportedly asked Papadopoulos for talking points for the meeting, scheduled a phone call to discuss the matter with him, and requested that Papadopoulos get in touch with the embassy when they finalized a meeting time.

"This is a great move on our side," Papadopoulos reportedly wrote to Bannon. "A home run."

"Agree," Bannon replied. "But very hard sell to DJT."

Trump, Flynn, and then-campaign adviser Jeff Sessions, met with al-Sissi the next day, and Trump later said the meeting lasted "a long time" and that "there was a good chemistry there."

Two to three months later, in December 2016, Papadopoulos again contacted Bannon and told him he had been in touch with Panos Kammenous, the Greek defense minister and a pro-Russian nationalist.

Papadopoulos reportedly told Bannon that "they want to sign a government-to-government agreement with the USA for all rights to all energy fields offshore, strategic foothold in the Mediterranean and Balkans."

17 PHOTOS
Steve Bannon
See Gallery
Steve Bannon
White House Chief Strategist Stephen Bannon speaks with White House chief of staff Reince Priebus before Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump arrive for their joint news conference at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 10, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon and White House Director of Strategic Communications Hope Hicks walk along the colonnade ahead of a joint press conference by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 10, 2017. REUTERS/Jim Bourg
U.S. National Security Advisor Michael Flynn (R) and Senior Counselor Steve Bannon board Air Force One at West Palm Beach International airport in West Palm Beach, Florida U.S., February 12, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump's chief strategist Steve Bannon (L) and senior aide Kellyanne Conway speak at meeting hosted by Trump with cyber security experts in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington January 31, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
FILE PHOTO: Chief White House strategist Steve Bannon (L) sits with Chief of Staff Reince Priebus (C) and senior advisor Stephen Miller during a swearing-in ceremony at the White House in Washington, U.S., January 22, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump (L-R), joined by Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, Vice President Mike Pence, senior advisor Steve Bannon, Communications Director Sean Spicer and National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, speaks by phone with Russia's President Vladimir Putin in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 28, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. President Donald Trump signs a memorandum to security services directing them to defeat the Islamic State in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 28, 2017. Pictured with him are White House senior advisor Steve Bannon (L-R), National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn, Vice President Mike Pence, Deputy National Security Advisor K. T. McFarland, National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, National Security Council Chief of Staff Keith Kellogg and senior advisor Kellyanne Conway. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Steve Bannon, Chief Strategist for US President-elect Donald Trump, talks on the phone outside Trump Tower in New York on December 9, 2016.

(DOMINICK REUTER/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump (R) and senior counselor Steve Bannon (L) hold meetings at the Mar-a-lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S. December 28, 2016.

(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's campaign CEO Steve Bannon is pictured backstage during a campaign event in Eau Claire, Wisconsin U.S. November 1, 2016.

(REUTERS/Carlo Allegri)

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's campaign CEO Steve Bannon (R) is pictured talking to a reporter after a campaign event in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S. October 29, 2016.

(REUTERS/Carlo Allegr's)

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's campaign CEO Steve Bannon holds a campaign rally the Reno-Sparks Convention Center November 5, 2016 in Reno, Nevada. With less than a week before Election Day in the United States, Trump and his opponent, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, are campaigning in key battleground states that each must win to take the White House.

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's campaign CEO Steve Bannon (C) listens to Trump speak during his final campaign rally on Election Day in the Devos Place November 8, 2016 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Trump's marathon last day of campaigning stretched past midnight and into Election Day.

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Steve Bannon gets off the plane with US President-elect Donald Trump arrives at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport in Hebron, Kentucky, for the start of the 'USA Thank You Tour' at the US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio, December 1, 2016.

(TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

Steve Bannon, chief strategist for Donal Trump, leaves after the motorcade of US President-elect arrived at Trump Tower on December 10, 2016 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

Steve Bannon, (L) chief strategist for Donal Trump, exits Trump Tower on December 13, 2016 in New York.

(EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

Steve Bannon, senior counselor to U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, arrives to attend meetings between Trump and business leaders at the Mar-a-lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S. December 28, 2016.

(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Bannon did not reply to the message, but instead forwarded it to Flynn and KT McFarland, who, by that point, was working on the Trump transition team as Flynn's deputy.

"Will work this one," Flynn responded, according to the report.

Later that month, Flynn is said to have told Papadopoulos in an email that his suggestions were "great opportunities."

"We will examine these and determine if this is something we should take on early," Flynn reportedly wrote. "Stay in touch and, at some point, we should get together."

A little under a year later, Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to investigators about his contacts with Russian officials during the transition period.

george papadopoulos twitterLinkedIn

Papadopoulos joined the Trump campaign as a foreign-policy adviser in March 2016, but his outreach to the operation began nearly eight months earlier, according to the report.

In July 2015, Papadopoulos reached out to the campaign to inquire about any openings but was rebuffed after months of communications with Lewandowski and Michael Glassner, then the deputy campaign manager and a key figure in the current Trump reelection effort.

He later went on to work for then Republican candidate Ben Carson's campaign. As Carson's candidacy took a nosedive, Papadopoulos again contacted the Trump team and asked if there were openings, The Post reported. At the time, Trump was receiving significant scrutiny for not having a foreign-policy team, and the campaign subsequently brought Papadopoulos on, along with another little-known adviser: Carter Page.

According to court filings, in April 2016, one month after he joined the campaign, Papadopoulos emailed Lewandowski, telling him he had gotten "a lot of calls over the past month" about how "Putin wants to host the Trump team when the time is right."

On May 4, he told Lewandowski and Clovis that Ivan Timofeev, a senior official at the Russian International Affairs Council, had indicated that Russian officials were open to Trump visiting Moscow.

Clovis replied: "There are legal issues we need to mitigate, meeting with foreign officials as a private citizen."

Papadopoulos then emailed Manafort and said, "Russia has been eager to meet with Mr. Trump for some time and have been reaching out to me to discuss."

Manafort forwarded the email to his associate, Rick Gates, and added: "Let's discuss. We need someone to communicate that DT is not doing these trips. It should be someone low level in the campaign so as not to send any signal."

In July 2016, Page traveled to Moscow and met with top Russian officials.

In August, Clovis encouraged Papadopoulos to pursue meetings with Russians on his own "if feasible."

Meanwhile, on June 1, Papadopoulos emailed someone identified in the special counsel Robert Mueller's filings as "a high-ranking campaign official" and inquired about Russia. The official pointed Papadopoulos to the "campaign supervisor," whom Papadopoulos emailed with the subject line: "Re: Messages from Russia."

He added in the email's body: "I have the Russian MFA asking me if Mr. Trump is interested in visiting Russia at some point. Wanted to pass this info along to you for you to decide what’s best to do with it and what message I should send (or to ignore)."

The same month, Papadopoulos emailed the unidentified "high-ranking" campaign official to tell him he would be willing to travel to Moscow to meet with Russian government officials "if it’s in the interest of Mr. Trump and the campaign to meet specific people."

Based on public knowledge, Papadopoulos never went to Moscow for the trip. However, the so-called Steele dossier — an explosive collection of memos alleging ties between the Trump campaign and Russia — says that by late July 2016, there was "a well-developed conspiracy of co-operation between" the Trump campaign "and the Russian leadership."

By September 2016, the Russian state media outlet Interfax contacted Papadopoulos and asked to interview him.

"Received a request from Interfax Russian News Agency with Ksenia Baygarova on U.S.-Russia ties under a President Trump. What do you think?" Papadopoulos reportedly wrote in an email sent to deputy communications director Bryan Lanza on September 9, 2016.

"You should do it," Lanza replied, according to The Post. Lanza said the US could find common ground with Russia regarding the ongoing conflict in Syria, and he also reportedly emphasized the benefits of a potential "partnership with Russia."

After Papadopoulos offered to send Lanza a copy of the interview after it was published, Lanza replied, "You're the best. Thank you!"

Investigators also said Papadopoulos sent the Interfax article to another individual after it was published: the shadowy London-based professor Joseph Mifsud.

Papadopoulos first met Mifsud in March 2016. Mifsud wasn't open to engaging with Papadopoulos at first, but he became more interested after he learned Papadopoulos was working on the Trump campaign.

Mifsud and Papadopoulos stayed in touch and Mifsud connected the Trump campaign adviser with at least two Russia-linked individuals over the next few weeks: Olga Polonskaya, a wine company manager based in St. Petersburg, Timofeev, the senior official on the Russian International Affairs Council.

Mifsud told Papadopoulos in April 2016, just over a month after their initial contact, that the Russians had information that would embarrass Hillary Clinton that came in the form of "thousands of emails," the FBI's statement of offense against Papadopoulos said.

18 PHOTOS
Stephen Miller in his White House role
See Gallery
Stephen Miller in his White House role
Senior advisor Stephen Miller attends a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and congressional leaders to discuss trade deals at the at the Roosevelt room of the White House in Washington U.S., February 2, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Senior advisor Stephen Miller (L) and Senior advisor and son-in-law of U.S. President Donald Trump, Jared Kushner (R) attend a breakfast meeting with small business leaders hosted by Trump at the Roosevelt room of the White House in Washington U.S., January 30, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
White House speech writer Stephen Miller (L) and advisor Jared Kushner (2nd L) join President Donald Trump at a meeting with U.S. congressional leaders in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 23, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
U.S. President Donald Trump's top White House staff, including (L-R) Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, Chief Strategist Steve Bannon and Senior Advisors Stephen Miller and Jared Kushner, enter the East Room to attend a joint news conference being held by President Trump and British Prime Minister Theresa May at the White House in Washington, U.S., January 27, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway and Senior Advisor Stephen Miller (R) walk along the colonnade ahead of a joint press conference by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 10, 2017. REUTERS/Jim Bourg
U.S. Representative Steny Hoyer (D-MD) (L-R), House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), White House advisor Jared Kushner, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), WHite House speech writer Stephen Miller, Representative Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) wait for President Donald Trump to arrive for a reception and meeting with U.S. congressional leaders in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 23, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Senior White House Advisor Stephen Miller waits to go on the air in the White House Briefing Room in Washington, U.S., February 12, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer removes lint from Senior White House Advisor Stephen Miller's jacket as he waits to go on the air in the White House Briefing Room in Washington, U.S., February 12, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Senior White House Advisor Stephen Miller waits to go on the air in the White House Briefing Room in Washington, U.S., February 12, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
White House senior advisors Stephen Miller (C) and Kellyanne Conway arrive prior to a joint news conference between Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 13, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
White House Senior Advisor Stephen Miller takes the president's notes from a White House military aide after a joint news conference between U.S. President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 15, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon (C) arrives with Senior Advisor Stephen Miller (L) and Chief of Staff Reince Priebus for a news conference by U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 16, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
White House advisors Stephen Miller (L) and Steve Bannon (R) arrive aboard Air Force One, returning to Washington with U.S. President Donald Trump from a weekend in Florida, at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S. March 5, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Senior advisors Stephen Miller and Kellyanne Conway watch as German Chancellor Angela Merkel and U.S. President Donald Trump hold a joint news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., March 17, 2017. REUTERS/Jim Bourg
White House Senior Adviser Stephen Miller arrives to attend a joint news conference by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and U.S. President Donald Trump in the East Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., March 17, 2017. REUTERS/Jim Bourg
White House senior policy advisor Stephen Miller (R) joins Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders to discuss U.S. immigration policy at the daily briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. August 2, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House senior policy advisor Stephen Miller (R) joins Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders to discuss U.S. immigration policy at the daily briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. August 2, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
White House senior policy advisor Stephen Miller discusses U.S. immigration policy at the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. August 2, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

The next day, Papadopoulos wrote in an email to campaign adviser Stephen Miller — who now serves as a senior policy adviser in the White House — that there were "interesting messages coming in from Moscow" but did not elaborate on what he had learned.

In May, Papadopoulos told Alexander Downer, Australia's top diplomat to the UK, about Russia's dirt on Clinton while they were drinking at a swanky bar in London, according to The New York Times.

Two months later, when the radical pro-transparency group WikiLeaks posted a trove of hacked Democratic National Committee emails online, Australian officials informed their American counterparts of Papadopoulos' conversation with Downer, The Times reported. The FBI began scrutinizing the Trump campaign's Russia ties that month.

NOW WATCH: Here's why the death penalty and longer prison sentences don't really deter crime

See Also:

SEE ALSO: We now know the tipping point that prompted the FBI to launch its Trump-Russia investigation

Read Full Story