Special counsel Robert Mueller asked the Justice Department within the past month to turn over a wide array of documents as part of its ongoing investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, ABC News reported Sunday.
His team is particularly interested in materials that relate to Trump's dismissal of former FBI Director James Comey and Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsThose predicting Facebook's demise are blowing smoke If bitcoin is 'digital gold,' it should be taxed like gold The metaverse is coming — society should be wary MORE's decision to recuse himself from the Russia probe earlier this year, a source who was told about the request informed ABC News.
This will be Mueller's first records request to the Justice Department, the very agency that is overseeing the probe.
Trump has repeatedly slammed Sessions for recusing himself from the investigation and for Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein's subsequent decision to appoint Mueller. Both Sessions and Rosenstein were integral to the decision to remove Comey.
The investigative team is interested in back-and-forth exchanges between Justice Department officials as well as any contact they had with their White House counterparts, the source told ABC News.
This directive comes after Mueller's team asked former top Justice Department officials to describe their time serving at the department, according to the report.
A spokesman for Mueller and a spokeswoman for the Justice Department both declined ABC’s request for comment on the matter.
According to the ABC News report, the document directive is the latest sign that Mueller is looking into whether the president or any other administration official improperly attempted to wield influence over an ongoing investigation.
Sessions told lawmakers last month he is willing to both meet with Mueller and cooperate with any requests for the special counsel investigation.
In September, Mueller also reportedly asked the White House to turn over documents related to some of President Trump’s most controversial actions in office, including his firing of Comey.
The document requests indicate that at least some aspects of Mueller’s probe are focused on the president’s behavior in office.
The special counsel has broadly been examining Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election as well as whether Trump campaign aides colluded with the Russians to influence the election.