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Barr forms team to probe FBI actions in Russia investigation: report

Attorney General William Bar has reportedly formed a team to review actions of Justice Department and FBI officials leading up to the launch of the federal probe into President TrumpDonald TrumpNoem touts South Dakota coronavirus response, knocks lockdowns in CPAC speech On The Trail: Cuomo and Newsom — a story of two embattled governors McCarthy: 'I would bet my house' GOP takes back lower chamber in 2022 MORE's campaign and possible Russian collusion.

Bloomberg reported Tuesday evening that Barr has assembled a team to review certain counterintelligence decisions made by Justice Department and FBI officials including during the probe into Trump's campaign during the election in the summer of 2016.

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Barr had testified before a House Appropriations subcommittee on Tuesday that he was reviewing "conduct" from around that period.

“I am reviewing the conduct of the investigation and trying to get my arms around all the aspects of the counterintelligence investigation that was conducted during the summer of 2016,” he said.

News of the review comes following the conclusion of special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerWhy a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel CNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump MORE’s nearly two-year investigation into  Russian interference in the 2016 campaign.

Mueller was appointed as special counsel in May 2017 to take over the Russia probe after Trump fired former FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeyJohn Durham's endgame: Don't expect criminal charges Trump DOJ officials sought to block search of Giuliani records: report Tina Fey, Amy Poehler to host Golden Globes from separate coasts amid pandemic MORE.

Barr’s review is reportedly separate from the current investigation being conducted by the Justice Department inspector general’s office, Bloomberg reported.

The attorney general said during his testimony that he expects the internal inspector general review to be completed by May or June.

Republicans have long argued that anti-Trump bias at the FBI triggered the investigation and the "Steele Dossier," controversial opposition research conducted on the Trump campaign.

Rep. Robert AderholtRobert Brown AderholtMo Brooks expresses interest in running for Shelby's Senate seat Shelby won't run for reelection Will Biden continue NASA's Artemis program to return to the moon? MORE (R-Ala.) during Barr’s hearing questioned if the Justice Department would investigate “how it came to be that your agency used a salacious and unverified dossier as a predicate for FISA order on a U.S. citizen?”

Trump and his allies have claimed that the dossier was used to obtain a secret warrant to spy on former Trump campaign aide Carter Page, Bloomberg noted.

Comey, however, rejected that assertion last year when he testified before Congress. He said the investigation was opened the officials learned that another Trump campaign aide, George Papaopoulous “had with an individual in London about stolen emails that the Russians had that would be harmful to Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonMedia circles wagons for conspiracy theorist Neera Tanden The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Senate ref axes minimum wage, House votes today on relief bill Democratic strategists start women-run media consulting firm MORE.”

Mueller concluded his investigation last month and Barr summarized the contents in a March 24 letter, revealing that the special counsel did not “establish” that associates or members of the Trump campaign coordinated or conspired with the Russian government.

Barr’s summary noted that Mueller did not make judgement on whether Trump obstructed justice. Barr wrote that he and Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinRosenstein: Zero tolerance immigration policy 'never should have been proposed or implemented' Comey argues Trump shouldn't be prosecuted after leaving Oval Office Trump turns his ire toward Cabinet members MORE reviewed the evidence and determined it insufficient to accuse Trump of obstructing the investigation. 

Bar told lawmakers during his Tuesday testimony that he will release a public version of Muller’s report “within a week.”