UK spies first stumbled upon Russian contacts with Trump campaign members in 2015: report
British spy agencies first started tracking contacts between Russian intelligence agents and members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign all the way back in 2015, according to a new report from the Guardian.
The publication’s sources claim that British spy agency “GCHQ first became aware in late 2015 of suspicious ‘interactions’ between figures connected to Trump and known or suspected Russian agents,” and then passed that information onto their American counterparts.
The Guardian’s sources also claim that several western intelligence agencies collected and shared information on contacts between Russian officials and members of Trump’s inner circle, although the publication didn’t name any specific members of Trump’s team caught up in GCHQ surveillance.
Interestingly, one source tells the Guardian that European intelligence agencies were much more alert to the contacts between Trump and the Russians than their American counterparts at the FBI and CIA were.
“It looks like the [US] agencies were asleep,” the source said. “They [the European agencies] were saying: ‘There are contacts going on between people close to Mr. Trump and people we believe are Russian intelligence agents. You should be wary of this.’ The message was: ‘Watch out. There’s something not right here.'”