Jeff Sessions Faces Congress Amid New Russia Probe Details

WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/AP) — Attorney General Jeff Sessions has returned to Capitol Hill Tuesday amid growing evidence of contacts between Russians and associates of President Donald Trump.

He’s expected to face an onslaught of lawmakers’ questions about how much he knew of that outreach during last year’s White House campaign.

The appearance before the House Judiciary Committee follows a guilty plea from one Trump campaign aide who served on a foreign policy council that Sessions chaired, as well as statements from another adviser who said he’d advised the then-GOP Alabama senator about an upcoming trip to Russia.

Those details complicate Sessions’ effort to downplay knowledge of the campaign’s foreign contacts.

Meanwhile, the Senate Judiciary Committee is planning a Tuesday interview with a Russian-American lobbyist who attended a campaign meeting last year with Trump’s son, according to a person familiar with the interview.

The staff interview behind closed doors with Rinat Akhmetshin is part of the committee’s probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, as well as an ongoing investigation by Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley into lax enforcement of the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

The panel’s investigation into Russian meddling has been stalled for weeks amid disputes between Republicans and Democrats. But Grassley has long said he wants to interview Akhmetshin about why he was not registered as a foreign agent.

The Senate Judiciary Committee is also expected to demand that Donald Trump Jr. appear before them to explain a series of private Twitter messages between him and WikiLeaks during and after the 2016 election. President Trump’s oldest son released the messages after The Atlantic reported them Monday. Some of the messages came around the time that WikiLeaks released stolen emails from Democrat Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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