FBI shifts focus of Jan 6 investigation to Trump's inner circle as prosecutors subpoena former president's aide

FBI shifts focus of Jan 6 investigation to Trump's inner circle as prosecutors subpoena former president's aide
Donald Trump arriving to speak at a rally in Washington, DC, on Jan. 6, 2021Jacquelyn Martin/AP
  • Federal prosecutors have subpoenaed William Miller, a former aide to Donald Trump, reports say.
  • It is in connection to the FBI's January 6 investigation, according to The New York Times.

Federal prosecutors have subpoenaed a former aide to ex-President Donald Trump in the Justice Department's investigation into the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, The New York Times reported.

FBI agents in Florida are seeking to interview William Russell, who served as a special assistant and the deputy director of presidential advance operations in the White House under Trump, and continued working for him after he left office, the article said.

According to the Times' sources, agents have not not yet interviewed Williams, but are seeking to do so in relation to their investigation into the riot on January 6, 2021, when a mob of Trump supporters attacked the Capitol in a bid to halt Joe Biden's certification as president.

The move indicates that the FBI is moving closer into Trump's inner circle as it investigates the riot.

Until recently it was unclear if the Justice Department investigation touched on Trump himself.


But Pat Cipollone, who served as White House counsel to Trump, recently gave an interview before a grand jury convened in the probe.

The FBI is reported to be focussing on a scheme to appoint a set of fake electors to the Electoral College in 2020, who would've ignored the actual result of the election and instead cast their votes for Trump. The plan was backed by officials close to Trump.

The House Jan 6 committee is pursuing a parallel investigation into the January 6 riot, and has focussed closely on Trump's involvement in the scheme to overturn the result and his actions on January 6, when he delivered an incendiary speech to supporters then watched them ransack the Capitol on TV.

Trump also faces legal peril from the FBI's investigation into his possession of government records, including highly classified information, that was recovered in a raid on his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida in August.