Ethics groups want Erik Prince probed by Department of Justice after Russia back channel claim

By: Denis Slattery, New York Daily News, March 8, 2018

The latest twist in special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe puts the spotlight on a shady associate of President Trump who is no stranger to controversy.

Erik Prince, the brother of Trump’s Education secretary Betsy DeVos, was a deep-pocketed donor to Trump’s campaign and was close with former White House strategist Stephen Bannon.

But until this week, he has remained a relatively obscure background character in the intricate web that is the Trump world.

That changed Wednesday as a witness has reportedly testified that Prince helped arrange a 2017 meeting in the Seychelles islands meant to set up a back channel of communication between the Trump camp and Russia.

That revelation counters testimony Prince made before the house Intelligence Committee last year.

On Thursday, liberal groups including the Campaign for Accountability called on the House to refer Prince to the Department of Justice for an investigation into his activities.

“Erik Prince’s testimony, never credible on its face, is directly contradicted by numerous press reports,” the nonprofit’s director Daniel Stevens said in a statement. “If, as President Trump claims, there was no collusion, then there is no reason for so many people who worked to install Trump in the White House to lie to those investigating the election.”

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