A former adviser on the Trump presidential campaign met with and passed on documents to a Russian intelligence operative in 2013, BuzzFeed News reported on Monday.
Page, who was an energy consultant working in NYC at the time, is referred to in the filing as Male-1, which states that Podobnyy tried to recruit him.
The filing includes a transcript of a recorded conversation in which Podobnyy talks to one of the other men in the ring, Igor Sporyshev, about the recruitment target.
According to the documents, Page met Podobnyy in January 2013 at an energy conference and then until June 2016, he met with, emailed with and “provided documents to [Podobnyy] about the energy business.”
While the incident happened three years before Page’s involvement in the Trump campaign, it is the clearest documented evidence of a connection between Russian intelligence and someone close to the president. The Associated Press reported that the former foreign policy adviser split from the campaign before the election and the White House says Trump has no relationship with him.
According to BuzzFeed, Page has now volunteered to help Senate investigators in their inquiry.
One of the more enlightening segments of the transcript describes Page as an “idiot.”
[Male-1] wrote that he is sorry, he went to Moscow and forgot to check his inbox, but he wants to meet when he gets back. I think he is an idiot and forgot who I am…He got hooked on Gazprom thinking that if they have a project, he could rise up.
I also promised him a lot…this is intelligence method to cheat, how else to work with foreigners? You promise a favor for a favor. You get the documents from him and tell him to go f— himself.
In another section, Podobnyy said: “I like that he takes on everything. For now his enthusiasm works for me. I also promised him a lot.”
Page confirmed to BuzzFeed News that he is the person referred to as “Male-1.”