Indicted Russian Firm Demands More Info From Mueller

WASHINGTON (CN) – Saying Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office has refused to turn over information key to its trial preparation efforts, a Russian company accused of funding the Kremlin’s plan to influence the 2016 presidential election asked a federal judge Monday to give it access to more information about the allegations it faces.   

Attorneys Eric Dubelier, right, and Katherine Seikaly, left, representing Concord Management and Consulting LLC, walk out of federal court in Washington, D.C. on May 9, 2018. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

The 13-page filing from Concord Management and Consulting asks U.S. District Judge Dabney Friedrich to make Mueller’s office turn over information about unindicted co-conspirators mentioned in the indictment, as well as the specific social media accounts these people allegedly controlled.

The motion for a bill of particulars also asks for definitions of terms in the indictment and identifying details about computers allegedly used in the scheme.  

“In seeking the particulars of the allegations in the indictment, Concord is not asking that the government explain the manner in which it will prove its allegations, but rather for an explanation of the allegations themselves so as to allow it to prepare a defense and avoid surprise at trial,” the company’s filing states.

Concord faces conspiracy charges for allegedly funding the social media troll farms that intelligence agencies say were part of Russia’s efforts to swing the 2016 election in President Donald Trump’s favor. The company has been waging a months-long battle for access to more information about the case, specifically fighting against a protective order its attorneys say is significantly hampering their ability to prepare for trial.

Concord attorney Eric Dubelier, with the firm Reed Smith, has called the case against his client “a first of its kind.” In Monday’s filing, Dubelier says the “vague and overly general allegations” in the case have prevented his team from building a good defense.

The filing says without more information about the alleged co-conspirators in the case, Concord cannot determine whether anyone acting for the company might have done something illegal. Dubelier also says the company cannot prepare a defense unless Mueller’s office reveals more about what statements from which social media accounts led to the charges it currently faces. 

“Concord should not be forced to waste time guessing which social media or email accounts the government contends support the allegations in the indictment when the government knows precisely those accounts on which it relies,” the filing states. “Furthermore, in order to allow Concord to prepare for trial, the government should inform Concord to whom the social media account allegedly belonged.”

Concord also seeks to have Mueller’s office define numerous terms that appear in the indictment, including “improper foreign influence,” “political activities” and “derogatory information.”

“These terms have no legal meaning and by virtue of their inclusion in the indictment, they force Concord to speculate what their meaning might be,” the motion states.  

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