A-list mob prosecutor joins Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation team
Robert Mueller, the former FBI director who’s now serving as the special counsel in the probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election, has put together a team of experienced prosecutors — including some who have experience going after organized crime.
Politico has talked with some veteran prosecutors who say that Mueller “has assembled a potent team with backgrounds handling everyone from politicians to mobsters and who know how to work potential witnesses if it helps them land bigger fish.”
Included on Mueller’s team are longtime law firm partner James Quarles, who got his start in Washington as an assistant prosecutor in the Watergate scandal; Andrew Weissmann, the head of the Justice Department’s criminal fraud unit, who is best known for his work in prosecuting the Enron accounting scandal and for trying dozens of cases related to the notorious Genovese and Gambino crime families; and Jeannie Rhee, who previously worked at the Department of Justice while advising the White House and the attorney general on executive power and national-security issues.
“The more familiar you are with the important, hard cases that have come before you, the better you are at assessing the one in front of you,” explained Samuel Buell, an ex-federal prosecutor who helped Weissmann prosecute Enron executives. “In a matter of this importance— it’s going to have an almost unprecedented level of outside scrutiny for anything they do — it’s critical that Mueller would be prizing that kind of gray-beard energy.”