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Mueller Closes Special Counsel's Office, Says Charging Trump With Crime Was Not An Option

Mueller Closes Special Counsel's Office, Says Charging Trump With Crime Was Not An Option

Robert Mueller said Wednesday the special counsel's investigation into President Donald Trump intentionally didn't reach a conclusion on whether the president committed a crime, because he couldn't be charged with one, but clarified that it didn't mean the report cleared the president of any wrongdoing.

"If we had had confidence the president clearly did not commit a crime we would have said so," Mueller said in brief remarks that he said would likely be his only statement on the investigation.

Some Background

Trump has claimed the report exonerates him because it didn't say he committed a crime after the special counsel's investigation into Russian efforts to influence U.S. elections and whether President Trump had a role and whether he obstructed the investigation.

Mueller made the remarks as he announced he was formally resigning as special counsel and closing his office.

Mueller said the office never intended to say whether Trump committed a crime or not because the Justice Department policy and the constitution don't allow for any crime by a sitting president to be prosecuted.

"Charging the president with a crime is therefore not an option we could consider," Mueller said. "It would be unfair to potentially accuse somebody of a crime when there can be no court resolution of the charge."

What's Next

Mueller also said he wouldn't say anything else beyond what the office said in its exhaustive report.

"The work speaks for itself," Mueller said in a brief appearance before reporters, after which he took no questions. Mueller said that if he is called to testify before Congress, he wouldn't say anything beyond what is in the published report.

"The report is my testimony," Mueller said. "We chose those words carefully."

Related Links:

No Collusion: AG Barr Says Russians Interfered In Election, But Without Help From Trump, His Campaign

Mueller Report Highlights: The Special Counsel's Conclusions On Russia, Obstruction, Collusion


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