A grand jury criminal probe into ousted National Security Adviser Michael Flynn will now be included in Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of possible ties between President Trump or his associates and Russia, Reuters reported Friday. Mueller's probe will absorb a grand jury criminal investigation by federal prosecutors in Virginia into Flynn.
The Virginia prosecutors are examining Flynn's work as a paid lobbyist on behalf of Turkish interests, along with his possible communications with Russian officials during and after the election. A subpoena viewed by Reuters indicates the Virginia prosecutors were specifically examining connections between Flynn and Turkish businessman Ekim Alptekin, whose company paid Flynn's company $530,000 to research exiled Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has blamed Gulen for an attempted coup last July.
"Mueller's move to take over the Virginia grand jury's criminal investigation highlights his broad powers as special counsel," Reuters notes. Two people familiar with the investigation told Reuters that the Virginia grand jury has also issued subpoenas to some of Flynn's business associates.
Neither Flynn's lawyer nor a spokesman for Mueller offered comment. Read more about the growing Mueller probe at Reuters.