(Bloomberg) — Andrew Miller, a man so close to Roger Stone that he describes the longtime Republican operative as “Uncle Roger,” testified about him and his relationship with Julian Assange before a federal grand jury on Friday, two days after conceding a yearlong fight against a subpoena from Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Miller answered questions for about two hours before the Washington panel Mueller established to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and possible coordination with President Donald Trump’s campaign. Prosecutors focused their examination on Miller’s relationship with Stone and Stone’s connection to WikiLeaks founder Assange, Miller’s attorney Paul Kamenar told reporters after the proceeding.
Stone was indicted by the grand jury in January on charges of lying to Congress about communications with Assange, obstruction and witness tampering. He has pleaded not guilty.
“Miller doesn’t have any knowledge about what Roger Stone knew about WikiLeaks and Julian Assange,” Kamenar said. He declined to speculate on the grand jury’s interest in Assange.
According to Mueller’s 448-page report on his two-year investigation, WikiLeaks was one of the channels through which Russian intelligence agents revealed documents they’d stolen by hacking into Democratic Party computers during the campaign, including those of Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.
More: Trump Attacks Mueller and Calls Impeachment ‘Disgusting Word’
On Aug. 21, 2016, two months before the mass release by WikiLeaks, Stone tweeted that “it will soon [be] Podesta’s time in the barrel.” In his testimony before a House Intelligence Committee in September 2017, he testified falsely that he had no advance notice, according to the indictment.Miller refused the subpoena from the special counsel at the risk of being jailed for contempt, to wage an unsuccessful legal challenge to the validity of Mueller’s appointment in May 2017. He conceded after a U.S. appeals court rejected his argument and returned the matter to the trial court for further proceedings earlier this week. The government notified the judge that the contempt citation against Miller can be discharged.
Mueller formally announced he was stepping down from his post and leaving the Justice Department for private life on May 29.
“Roger has been a mentor of mine. I was a driver. I worked for him for 13 years,” Miller told reporters outside the courthouse on Friday. “He’s like ‘Uncle Roger.’ ”
Kamenar said his client hasn’t had “anything to do” with Stone since before the election.
Stone’s trial is set for Nov. 5.
(Updates with Kamenar quotes starting in fourth paragraph.)
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