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By Saagar Enjeti
Former UKIP leader Nigel Farage of Brexit fame is a person of interest in the FBI’s investigation into Russia’s attempts to influence the 2016 presidential campaign, The Guardian reports.
“Farage has not been accused of wrongdoing and is not a suspect or a target of the US investigation,” the report notes.
The FBI’s scrutiny of Farage stems from his close connection with President Donald Trump and his associates, along with Julian Assange of Wikileaks. The U.S. intelligence community believes elements of the Russian government provided stolen emails to Wikileaks, who distributed the emails publicly during the 2016 election.
“Assange is a narcissist who has created nothing of value,” CIA Director Mike Pompeo declared in April. “He relies on the dirty work of other to make himself famous. He is a fraud — a coward hiding behind a screen,” adding “WikiLeaks walks like a hostile intelligence service and talks like a hostile intelligence service.”
“If you triangulate Russia, WikiLeaks, Assange and Trump associates the person who comes up with the most hits is Nigel Farage,” an intelligence source told The Guardian. They continued, “he’s right in the middle of these relationships. He turns up over and over again. There’s a lot of attention being paid to him.”
Farage’s spokesman issued a statement Thursday disparaging the guardian report as “hysterical.”
— Dan Jukes (@DanJukes17) June 1, 2017
Farage appeared on the campaign trail with Trump during the 2016 campaign and remained a forceful advocate for him throughout. Trump appears to admire Farage so much suggested publicly after his election that the United Kingdom should make him their Ambassador to the U.S. and invited him to meet him during the Presidential transition.
Farage was also publicly invited to dine with Trump at the Trump International Hotel during a visit to Washington in February 2017.
— Nigel Farage (@Nigel_Farage) November 12, 2016
Farage made a surreptitious March visit to the Ecuadorian embassy in London where Assange is living. Farage claimed not to remember why he was in the building adding “I never discuss where I go or who I see.” He later defended the visit to a German newspaper saying he met Assange for “journalistic reasons” adding that he had “never received a penny from Russia.”