Main Steele Dossier Source Was on FBI Payroll as Confidential Informant, Durham Reveals

Igor Danchenko, a primary contributor to the Steele dossier, was hired by the FBI as a confidential informant in 2017, Special Counsel John Durham revealed in a new court filing.

The Russian national was ultimately charged in 2021 as part of Durham’s probe of the Trump-Russia investigation; he is accused of lying to the FBI regarding his sources for some claims in the Steele dossier. The charges focus on statements Danchenko made related to the sources he used in providing information to an investigative firm in the United Kingdom.

The new filing reveals the FBI hired Danchenko as a confidential informant in March 2017 after having interviewed him about his work on the dossier months earlier. Danchenko is accused of having made false statements regarding the sources of some information that he provided to a U.K. investigative firm in 2017 that was later passed to the FBI.

Long before Danchenko’s involvement in the Steele dossier, he was the subject of an FBI counterintelligence investigation in 2009 as an analyst at the Brookings Institute after one of his colleagues alleged that Danchenko asked if he would be willing to sell him classified information. In 2011, the FBI closed the probe after Danchenko left the U.S.



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