Harvard Law School professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz Friday described reports that Jared Kushner discussed a secret communications network with Russia as "another example of a political bombshell that doesn't rise to the level of criminal conduct."
He said that special prosecutor Robert Mueller, who is conducting the FBI's Moscow probe, "is supposed to be investigating only criminal conduct.
"They're not supposed to be investigating evildoing or bad acts or things that would incline you not to vote for [President Donald] Trump's re-election," Dershowitz told Wolf Blitzer on CNN.
"They're supposed to look for evidence of criminal conduct and violation of federal criminal statutes."
The Washington Post disclosed that Kushner, Trump's son-in-law who is now a senior White House adviser, suggested the back-channel network in a December meeting with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak.
The report said that the Russian told his supervisors of the suggestion in Moscow – and the network would have used Kremlin diplomatic operations to circumvent U.S. monitoring.
The White House declined to respond to the report.
Kushner's attorney, Jamie Gorelick, said Thursday that her client would cooperate with any scrutiny of his Russia contacts.
"This is another example of very important information the public has the right to know but not necessarily information that will lead to a criminal investigation, criminal indictment, or criminal prosecution," Dershowitz said.
He pressed his case for an independent commission to examine any possible contacts between the Trump campaign and Moscow.
"It's very dangerous to have reports to conduct fishing expeditions or giving them general commissions to see if they can find crimes," Dershowitz told Blitzer. "This is very appropriately done more by a Congress, if they want to change the law, or by an independent commission.
"That way, the public sees everything, we learn the answers, everything is done in public, the witnesses have lawyers.
"The investigation being conducted now is being conducted in secret, behind closed doors, in front of a grand jury – where the witnesses don't have lawyers.
"We'll probably never end up finding out the truth."
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