Jared Kushner is under scrutiny in the FBI's Russia investigation

Last Updated May 25, 2017 7:40 PM EDT

Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, is under scrutiny in the FBI's probe of Russian election meddling and any connections between Russia and the Trump campaign, CBS News has confirmed. 

Federal investigators are looking into meetings Kushner held in December with Russia's ambassador and a banker from Moscow, CBS News' Scott Pelley reported on "CBS Evening News" on Thursday. The banker, Sergey Gorkov, is the head of VEB Bank, a state-owned Russian entity that is the subject of U.S. government sanctions. Gorkov was trained by Russia's Federal Security Service, or FSB. 

CBS News has confirmed that when Jared Kushner met with Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak in December, Kushner discussed setting up a 'back channel' for communications between the Trump transition team and Russian officials. This is according to a source familiar with the intelligence gathered at the time.

As the Washington Post first reported, communications were intercepted between Kislyak and Moscow describing the talk.

This doesn't necessarily mean Kushner is a subject in the Russia investigation, or that he's suspected of wrongdoing. The Washington Post reported last week that a current White House senior adviser close to the president is a significant person of interest in the law enforcement investigation into any ties between Russia and Mr. Trump's associates, although the term "person of interest" doesn't necessarily mean suspect, and has no legal meaning. 

For weeks, the Senate intelligence committee has shown interest in interviewing Kushner.

"Mr. Kushner previously volunteered to share with Congress what he knows about these meetings. He will do the same if he is contacted in connection with any other inquiry," Jamie Gorelick, Kushner's lawyer and a veteran of the Clinton-era Department of Justice, said in a statement. 

The FBI's Russia investigation gained increased attention after the firing of FBI Director James Comey. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein recently appointed FBI Director Robert Mueller to head the Russia investigation as a special counsel. 

The Russia story continues to plague the Trump campaign. CBS News reported earlier this week that President Trump asked top intelligence officials to defend him against claims that his campaign collaborated with the Russian government. 

CBS News' Jeff Pegues, Paula Reid and Jacqueline Alemany contributed to this report.

  • Kathryn Watson

    Kathryn Watson is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.