Trump-Russia probe expands to possible financial crimes: report

The federal probe into alleged ties between the Trump campaign and Russia has expanded to focus on possible financial crimes, including those not necessarily related to the 2016 presidential campaign, CNN reported Thursday.

CNN reported that some leads unrelated to Russia, but that involved individuals close to President Trump, are being passed along to special counsel Robert Mueller, who is leading the probe, to encourage cooperation.

Acting Attorney General Rod Rosenstein noted in the letter appointing Mueller in May that the special counsel can probe any matters that "arose or may arise directly from the investigation."


The president publicly warned Mueller to not investigate his business transactions during a New York Times interview last month, saying the special counsel would be crossing a line. 

But Bloomberg reported in July that Mueller was looking into Trump's past business transactions, including purchases from Russian buyers at Trump properties, the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow, a SoHo development involving Russian associates and Trump's 2008 sale of a Florida mansion to a Russian oligarch. 

CNN also reported Thursday that former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page had been the subject of a secret intelligence surveillance warrant since 2014, much earlier than previously thought. The Washington Post reported earlier this year that the FBI had obtained a warrant targeting Page in the summer of 2016.

The report comes as The Wall Street Journal reported Mueller had impaneled a grand jury in Washington as part of the probe, signaling that the investigation was entering a new phase.