Wednesday, 2 August 2017

More fake news from CNN and others on the Seth Rich case

SETH RICH INVESTIGATOR SLANDERED BY CNN. CNN Used Edited Fox Interview To Harm Rod Wheeler

This is why the Seth Rich conspiracy won't disappear
Image result for rod wheeler seth rich

The White House worked with Fox News and a wealthy Republican donor to concoct a story about the murder of Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich, according to an explosive lawsuit filed Tuesday.

The story, the lawsuit said, was part of an attempt to discredit the US intelligence community's determination that Russia hacked the Democratic National Committee and obtained a trove of emails released by Wikileaks.

For months, right-wing conspiracy theorists had floated unproven theories that Rich was the person who provided Wikileaks with the DNC emails, and suggested his death was retribution for his supposed leak. No real evidence was ever provided to support such claims.

The theory, however, resurfaced in May when Fox News published a story that quoted Rod Wheeler, a Fox News contributor and former homicide detective hired on the Rich family's behalf by wealthy Republican businessman Ed Butowsky to investigate Rich's death. According to the story, Wheeler said there was in fact evidence showing Rich had been in contact with Wikileaks. The story quickly fell apart when Wheeler contradicted aspects of it in an interview with CNN. Fox News eventually deleted it from its website, saying in a note left in its place that it failed to meet the network's editorial standards.

Now Wheeler, in his lawsuit, which was first reported by NPR, is coming forward with what he claims is the backstory: Fox News reporter Malia Zimmerman, with the "knowledge and support" of Butowsky, fabricated a pair of quotes attributed to Wheeler. It was all part of an effort to distract from the Russia narrative, the lawsuit said.

"Zimmerman, Butowsky and Fox had created fake news to advance President Trump's agenda," said the lawsuit, which named 21st Century Fox, the Fox News Channel, Zimmerman, and Butowsky as defendants. "Mr. Wheeler was subsequently forced to correct the false record and, as a result, lost all credibility in the eyes of the public. Mr. Wheeler has suffered irreparable damage to his reputation and his career will likely never recover."

Moreover, the lawsuit said, the White House was aware of the Fox News story ahead of publication.

According to the lawsuit, then-White House press secretary Sean Spicer met with Butowsky and Wheeler, was provided Wheeler's investigative notes, and "asked to be kept abreast of developments" with the case.

"Ed is [a] longtime supporter of the president's agenda who often appears in the media," Spicer said in an email to CNN. "He asked for a 10 minute meeting, with no specified topic, to catch up and said he would be bringing along a contributor to Fox News. As Ed himself has noted, he has never met the President and the White House had nothing to do with his story."

Asked by CNN for confirmation that Rich had been discussed during that meeting, Spicer responded, "They told me they were working on a story about him and wanted me to be aware of it -- that was it."

Previously, Spicer appeared to deny he had knowledge of the Rich story. During a May 16 gaggle with reporters, he was asked for reaction to Fox News' story on the matter.

"I don't -- I'm not aware of -- generally, I don't get updates on DNC -- former DNC staffers," Spicer said. "I'm not aware of that."

Spicer did not respond to an email from CNN about the apparent discrepancy between what he said in May and his statement Tuesday.

At a press briefing Tuesday, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters, "The president had no knowledge of the story and it's completely untrue that he and the White House were involved."

Huckabee Sanders added at the end of the briefing that she was "not sure" whether Trump believes Rich leaked emails to Wikileaks.

But the lawsuit tells a different story. In addition to noting Spicer met with Butowsky and Wheeler, it included a text message from Butowsky to Wheeler which said, "Not to add any more pressure but the president just read the article. He wants the article out immediately. It's now all up to you. But don't feel the pressure."

Moments before sending that text message, according to the lawsuit, Butowsky also left a voicemail for Wheeler in which he said, "A couple minutes ago I got a note that we have the full, uh, attention of the White House on this. And, tomorrow, let's close this deal, whatever we've got to do. 

But you can feel free to say that the White House is onto this now."
When Wheeler called Butowsky after Fox News published its story and "demanded an explanation for the false statements" attributed to him, the lawsuit said, Butowsky told him the quotes were included because it was the way Trump wanted the article.

Butowsky told CNN that "the lawsuit is bulls**t" and said Wheeler's lawyer "pulled this out of his butt to make money." He said this message was a joke referring to what he said was Wheeler's desire for a job with the Trump administration.

"This was Rod and I," said Butowsky, who stressed he has never met with the president. "We teased all the time. We were basically telling him you are doing a great job and that the president or the White House or somebody would be interested in meeting you."

Butowsky has maintained he had only hired Wheeler to look into Rich's death in hopes the case could be solved, giving the Rich family some closure.

"As it turned out, Butowsky and Zimmerman were not simply Good Samaritans attempting to solve a murder. Rather, they were interested in advancing a political agenda for the Trump Administration," the lawsuit said.

To advance this political agenda, Butowsky went as far as sending talking points about Fox News' own story to Fox News on-air talent, the lawsuit said. 

It included a description of an email that it said Butowsky sent regarding Zimmerman's story to "various Fox News producers and on air talent," including the co-hosts of the network's morning show, "Fox & Friends." 

According to the lawsuit, the email read, in part, "One of the big conclusions we need to draw from this is that the Russians did not hack our computer systems and ste[a]l emails and there was no collusion like trump with the Russians."

No proof was offered in the lawsuit that the producers or hosts saw or acted upon this email. But the next morning, "Fox & Friends" did echo parts of this message.

The lawsuit additionally included claims of racial discrimination by Fox News against Wheeler. It said Wheeler's white colleagues had "received more air time, made more appearances and been hired into full time positions." 

Wheeler's career, the lawsuit said, had "remained stagnant for 12 years despite his repeated requests to be hired full time." The lawsuit said all of this reflected a "systemic practice" on behalf of Fox News of "discriminating against people of color."

Jay Wallace, Fox News' president of news, said in a statement provided to CNN that the "accusation that published Malia Zimmerman's story to help detract from coverage of the Russia collusion issue is completely erroneous."

"The retraction of this story is still being investigated internally and we have no evidence that Rod Wheeler was misquoted by Zimmerman," Wallace said. 

"Additionally, FOX News vehemently denies the race discrimination claims in the lawsuit — the dispute between Zimmerman and Rod Wheeler has nothing to do with race."

Fox News retracted the story more than two months ago.

Wheeler declined to comment to CNN, saying he could not "disclose more details" than what was already available in his lawsuit.

Related: Family of slain DNC staffer demands retractions from Fox News, local TV station

In a statement provided by their spokesperson, the Rich family said, "While we can't speak to the evidence that you now have, we are hopeful this brings an end to what has been the most emotionally difficult time in our lives, and an end to conspiracy theories surrounding our beloved Seth."

Xochitl Hinojosa, the communications director for the DNC, said if the allegations in the lawsuit are true "it is beyond vile that the White House -- and possibly even Trump himself -- would use the murder of a young man to distract the public's attention from their chaotic administration and Trump's ties to Russia."

"The Rich family has begged those responsible for these conspiracies to stop. And yet, Trump's allies have ignored their pain and their pleas, degrading the office of the president by spreading repulsive lies," Hinojosa said. "This should outrage any decent human being. There is no excuse for the suffering that Trump's associates and their conspirators at FOX have caused the Rich family and those closest to him. Both parties should denounce these sick and twisted tactics."

And the response

Audio: Rod Wheeler Explains Fox News Fiasco, Claims Brother Blocked WikiLeaks Inquiries

In a phone call provided to Big League Politics by a source who wishes to remain anonymous at this time, private investigator Rod Wheeler explains what happened with the Fox News coverage of Seth Rich — and how brother Aaron Rich was actively attempting to shut down anyone looking into the WikiLeaks connection

On August 1, Wheeler filed a lawsuit in New York City alleging White House involvement in pushing the story. But in this recording, he explains that he acted on his own in contacting Fox News reporters — and exactly how that all went down. The White House being involved is not mentioned once.
The story has already blown up, this will only give credence to the story. If Fox News channel broke it, it would seem like conspiracy theories,” Wheeler says the Fox 5 DC reporter texted him. “So she decided that she was going to run with this story, in her mind, so it didn’t seem like a conspiracy theory from Fox News.”
Wheeler said that brother Aaron Rich tried to block Wheeler from looking at Seth’s computer, even though there could be evidence on it. “He said no, he said I have his computer, meaning him,” Wheeler said. “I said, well can I look at it?…He said, what are you looking for? I said anything that could indicate if Seth was having problems with someone. He said no, I already checked it. Don’t worry about it.”
Wheeler said that Seth’s girlfriend told him that Aaron Rich had possession of Seth’s cell phones, but Aaron denied it and said “we’re not going to worry about the cell phones.”
Aaron also blocked Wheeler from finding out about who was at a party Seth attended the night of the murder.
All I want you to do is work on the botched robbery theory and that’s it,” Aaron told Wheeler, according to Wheeler’s claim on the audio. Wheeler said that Seth’s father Joel “does not appear to have any hidden agenda.”
Rich was shot in the back in the early morning hours of July 10, 2016, near his home while he was on the phone with his girlfriend — 12 days before the publication of the DNC emails by WikiLeaks. The police initially ruled that it was a botched robbery — but his wallet, watch, and necklace were still on his person when he was discovered by police.
Though Assange has infamously expressed interest in Rich, he has always maintained that WikiLeaks will never name a source. WikiLeaks has offered a $20,000 reward for Rich’s murderer however, and has retweeted articles that asserted he was their source without providing any additional comment.

Rod Wheeler on his investigation into DNC staffer's murder
Fox News 

Retired Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer said Thursday on Tucker Carlson Tonight that there is now evidence that then-Democratic National Chairwoman and current Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz used Imran Awan for "malevolent activities" and "manipulative things" against Bernie Sanders in the 2016 Democratic primary race. 

Shaffer talked about Awan's other brothers who worked on Capitol Hill, family members fleeing the country to Pakistan, and that he got paid 3 times the average Congressional I.T. employee.

FOX News reported on bank fraud by one of the brothers, how he double-billed the House of Representatives, and the possibility of "putting sensitive House information on the 'cloud' and potentially exposing it to outside sources."

Awan was arrested at Dulles airport trying to leave the country.

Watch the video HERE


Trump confidante claims link between DNC staffer’s death and disgraced Wasserman Schultz aide

Roger Stone: Seth Rich Was Partying With Imran Awan on the Night of His Murder

1 August, 2017

According to Trump confidante Roger Stone, disgraced Debbie Wasserman Schultz aide Imran Awan was with former DNC staffer Seth Rich on the night of his murder.

Rich was murdered in an upscale area of Washington DC on July 10 last year but the killer or killers did not steal anything from the victim, rendering the police’s explanation that the incident was a robbery gone wrong doubtful.

Infowars reported on the questions surrounding Seth Rich’s murder multiple times back in August last year, including how there was around an hour and a half of “unaccounted for” time between Rich leaving a bar and being killed.
Brad Bauman, a crisis communications manager for the Democratic Party, was hired by Rich’s family to act as their spokesman.

Bauman’s first action was to insist that people stop questioning the unsolved circumstances behind Rich’s murder.

Now Trump confidante Roger Stone claims that Imran Awan, Florida Democrat Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s information technology (IT) administrator, was with Seth Rich before he was murdered.

FACT – Wasserman-Schulz “IT consultant” Awan was partying with Seth Rich the night of his murder ! Eat it @TheAtlantic !” Stone tweeted.

FACT - Wasserman-Schulz "IT consultant" Awan was partying with Seth Rich the night of his murder ! Eat it !

Awan reportedly possessed the password to DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s iPad when the DNC emails were leaked to Wikileaks.

Despite the mainstream media continually insisting – with no evidence – that Russia was responsible for the DNC leak – Julian Assange appeared to indicate that the source was Seth Rich during an appearance on Dutch television.

Hard drives recovered from Awan’s home were found to be smashed up with a hammer. Wasserman Schultz later threatened the chief of the U.S. Capitol Police with “consequences” for holding equipment related to the investigation into Awan.

Awan, who got paid 3 times the average Congressional I.T. employee salary, was arrested at Dulles airport after wiring $300,000 to Pakistan and attempting to flee the country.

According to Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer, Awan was working with and wiring money to the Muslim Brotherhood, a Sunni Islamist organization that is allied with terrorist groups and advocates Shariah law.

Meanwhile in a related development, a lawsuit filed against Fox News by Rod Wheeler claims that, “The Fox News Channel and a wealthy supporter of President Trump worked in concert under the watchful eye of the White House to concoct a story” about the murder of Seth Rich.

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