Special counsel Robert Mueller has collected stacks of evidence in his probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Among them is a nude selfie, according to a Thursday court filing by one of the Russian companies accused of spreading misinformation to influence voters.
Concord Management and Consulting wants the US district court for the District of Columbia to dismiss a request from Mueller to share sealed information with the judge overseeing the case.
Mueller has argued that access to sensitive material should be limited. Otherwise it could make its way to the Russian government, tipping it off to the methods he was using in the probe, he has said.
But Concord says Mueller’s argument doesn’t hold, because there’s nothing sensitive about the information or how it was obtained.
“Could the manner in which he collected a nude selfie really threaten the national security of the United States?” Concord’s lawyers asked in the filing. They didn’t provide any other information on the selfie, or who it might depict.
Concord has been trying to get the court’s permission to share the evidence with Yevgeny Prigozhin, a Russian oligarch with close ties to the Kremlin. Along with Concord, Prigozhin is one of 15 defendants charged in February with interfering in the 2016 election. He controls Concord, and funded the Internet Research Agency, which allegedly orchestrated the trolling operation.
Government prosecutors have accused Prigozhin of trying to use Concord to gain access to investigation materials. In June, DC district judge Dabney Friedrich barred the company’s attorneys from sharing the material with anyone outside the US.
Concord is not expecting its latest arguments to change the judge’s mind, it said in its filing.
“But object we must both for Concord and every other defendant to whom the Special Counsel believes the laws and rules of the United States no longer apply to his novel adventures,” it added.