First Subpoenas Issued in House Russia Probe

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A congressional committee has said it is issuing subpoenas for Donald Trump's former national security adviser and his personal lawyer in its investigation into Russian activities during last year's election.

News reports said that the committee also had subpoenaed three former officials in a probe into whether Obama administration officials improperly unmasked the identities of Americans monitored in contacts with foreign officials. The source, who requested anonymity to discuss sensitive matters, confirmed details first published by The Associated Press Tuesday, and said Flynn would turn over personal documents, as well as specific business records.

The panel, headed by Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., issued four subpoenas relating to the actual Russian Federation investigation, both The Wall Street Journal and Reuters reported.

The committee said it had approved subpoenas for Cohen and for Trump's former national security advisor Michael Flynn to appear before them and supply documents.

Names of certain Trump campaign officials were allegedly unmasked, or revealed, in classified intelligence reports regarding their communication with Russian agents.

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While Flynn has been a known target of congressional and Justice Department investigations into possible collusion between Moscow and the Trump presidential campaign, Cohen has only recently become a focus of the probe, for unknown reasons.

Cohen earlier rejected a House intelligence committee request for information.

It wasn't immediately clear what exactly Comey plans to tell the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, though lawmakers are certainly likely to ask Comey about his interactions with President Trump as the bureau pursued its investigation into his campaign's contacts. Richard Burr, R-N.C., said the committee "welcomes the testimony of former director Comey" but declined to comment further. Of the seven subpoenas issued, four were related to the Russian probe and three were related to "unmasking" done by Obama officials. This action would have been taken without the Minority's agreement.

There are subpoenas flying left and right out of the House's Intelligence Committee.

"The identities of U.S. persons may be released under two circumstances: 1) the identity is needed to make sense of the intercept; 2) if a crime is involved in the conversation", said Robert Deitz, a former senior counselor to the CIA director and former general counsel at the National Security Agency. Their names are normally redacted in intelligence reports.