While President Donald Trump insists that stories of Russian interference in the 2016 election are fake news, his hand in involvement in the statement about the meeting of son Donald Jr., son-in-law Jared Kushner, and campaign chairman Paul Manafort indicate otherwise. According to a former head of the White House ethics department, the revelation only boosted possible legal charges against the president.

Richard Painter, the lawyer, said the possible charges include witness tampering and obstruction of justice, The Independent reported. Trump’ advisers wanted the White House to release a statement that would provide details of the meeting, but Trump allegedly dictated what to write in the statement.

Adoption of Russian children

In the statement that Donald Jr. initially released, he said the meeting only discussed the adoption of Russian children with no reference to the offer by Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya of a political dossier that could hurt the Democrats for allegedly accepting dirty money. When The New York Times confronted Donald Jr. with details about the political dirt offered by Veselnitskaya, he released copies of emails sent by British publicist Rob Goldstein. He was aware of the offer of a political dossier, and he was interested in meeting the lawyer who allegedly represented the Russian government.

Although the White House denied Trump dictated the statement, Painter said the president’s intervention exposes him to obstruction of justice charges. Trump, however, insisted the Russian story – despite what the emails stated – is a total fabrication.

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Trump said at a campaign rally that the Russian Collusion accusations are only an excuse for Hillary Clinton’s electoral loss.

Investigate Clinton

Painter’s assessment came at a time when special counsel Robert Mueller had empaneled a grand jury into the Russian probe, Time reported. The investigation has reportedly expanded to include the business deals of Trump which angered the real estate billionaire. Trump wants the Mueller team to instead investigate Clinton and the Democrats for her alleged deals with the Russian government.

One of the advisers of Trump, who spoke anonymously to The Washington Post, said it was not necessary for the president to provide the contents of the statement for his namesake. The adviser said Trump’s intervention could be taken as an attempt to mislead the Mueller investigation. The move could be because he wanted to hide the truth about the offer of political dirt.

Trump, at the rally, said "The Russian story is a total fabrication, it is just an excuse for the greatest loss in the history of American politics...That's all it is."