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Dublin: 9 °C Tuesday 23 April, 2019

Trump says he could take over the investigation into himself if he wanted

Trump told Reuters that he is fearful of any ‘perjury trap’ interview with Mueller.

World Economic Forum 2018 Donald Trump Source: Jeff Widener/PA Images

US PRESIDENT DONALD Trump says that he is fearful of undergoing an interview by Special Counsel Robert Mueller due to such a talk representing a ‘perjury trap’.

Trump has also said that he could take over Mueller’s investigation, concerning at alleged Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election, but has decided to stay out of it.

In an interview with Reuters, Trump effectively rehashed similar claims regarding a so-called perjury trap made in recent days by his lawyer Rudy Giuliani.

Trump has repeatedly insisted that Mueller’s investigation is a ‘witch hunt’.

He told Reuters that any statement he might make to 73-year-old Mueller could end up being compared to that made by others, such as former FBI director James Comey, whom Trump fired and who has since been one of the president’s most outspoken critics.

Robert Mueller Named As Special Counsel On Russia Probe Robert Mueller Source: James Berglie/PA Images

“So if I say something and he says something, and it’s my word against his, and he’s best friends with Mueller, so Mueller might say: ‘Well, I believe Comey’, and even if I’m telling the truth, that makes me a liar. That’s no good,” Trump said.

He added that, should he wish to do so, he has the power to run the investigation himself.

“I’ve decided to stay out. Now I don’t have to stay out. I can go in, and I could do whatever – I could run it if I want. But I decided to stay out,” he said.

I’m totally allowed to be involved if I wanted to be. So far, I haven’t chosen to be involved. I’ll stay out.

Giuliani, a former mayor of New York, joined the Trump team as the president’s lawyer in early May.

He has since stood accused of making a series of gaffes when discussing Trump’s legal position, including saying that Trump had repaid a ‘hush payment’ made to porn star Stormy Daniels regarding an alleged affair between her and the president in 2006.

On Sunday, Giuliani first posited the idea of a perjury trap being laid for Trump in the shape of any conversation he might have with Mueller in an interview with NBC.

“I’m not going to be rushed into having him testify so he can be trapped into perjury,” he said. He added, when pressed, that “truth isn’t truth”, a comment that was greeted with derision in US media.

“When you tell me that he should testify because he’s going to tell the truth and he shouldn’t worry, well that’s so silly because it’s somebody’s version of the truth. Not the truth,” he said.

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