Robert Mueller’s probe is ‘close to being completed’

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The probe of possible Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election, led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, is wrapping up, Acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker told reporters on Monday.

“I’ve been fully briefed on the investigation and I look forward to Director Mueller delivering the final report,” he said at a press conference on U.S. charges against China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd. “Right now the investigation is I think close to being completed and I hope that we can get the report from Director Mueller as soon as possible.”

The investigation most recently ensnared a long-time confidant of President Donald Trump, political operative Roger Stone, and has led to the conviction of Trump’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort.

Mueller has been tight-lipped about when the months of closed-door grand jury sessions and plea deals will conclude, leaving questions over how far into the White House his probe will reach and what will happen to his findings. Trump’s nominee to fill the attorney general post permanently, William Barr, recently pledged to make public as much of the report as possible, saying Mueller is required to file it confidentially.

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Russia denies any wrongdoing in the 2016 election. Trump has repeatedly said he was not involved in any collusion with Russia and has often referred to the probe as a “witch hunt.”

(Reporting by Andy Sullivan and Sarah N. Lynch; Writing by Lisa Lambert; editing by Dan Grebler)

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