Reporting by Julia Kimani Burnham and Paula Reid
Jerome Corsi, a confidant of Trump associate Roger Stone and the former Washington bureau chief of conspiracy theory site InfoWars, told CBS News on Friday that he is negotiating with the special counsel's office for a plea deal. Corsi said he had been contacted by the special counsel about possible charges, and the special counsel and Corsi's attorney had been in ongoing discussions. The Washington Post first reported Corsi's plea negotiations Friday.
Earlier this month, Corsi said that he expected to be indicted, and according to the Associated Press, he has been cooperating with the Russia probe since late August. He has turned over two computers and a cell phone and has given Mueller's office access to his emails and tweets.
Among the issues the special counsel has been looking into is whether Stone knew in advance that WikiLeaks would publish Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta's hacked emails. On Aug. 21, 2016, Stone tweeted, "Trust me, it will soon [be] the Podesta's time in the barrel. #CrookedHillary." WikiLeaks began releasing Podesta's emails on Oct. 7, 2016.
Corsi said in an interview with the Daily Caller ten days ago, "I was telling people as early as August, I thought Assange had Podesta emails, and I thought he was going to drop them in October." But he denied having any inside knowledge, claiming that he had surmised on his own that Podesta's emails would be released because "there was plenty on the public record that allowed me to conclude that just studying from what Assange says."
Stone also denied he had been given any concrete information about the Podesta emails by Corsi, saying in a statement to CBS News that his discussions with Corsi about brothers John and Tony Podesta "were strictly limited to their overseas business interests unearthed in the Panama Papers and other public sources that were writing about John and Tony's activities."
Stone went on to say that "if Dr. Corsi knew that John Podesta's emails had been obtained by anyone and would be published he never shared this information with me nor did he give me any such documents."