Federal Bureau of Investigation probe into Trump and Russian Federation was codenamed 'Crossfire Hurricane'

Donald Trump FBI watergate

The paper had previously reported that in May 2016, Downer had a drink in London with Trump's then foreign policy adviser, George Papadopoulos, who allegedly told Downer Russia had dirt on Hillary Clinton.

Former Australian ambassador to the UK Alexander Downer sat down for an interview with two Federal Bureau of Investigation agents in London in 2016 to discuss potential Russian meddling in the United States presidential election, a New York Times report alleges.

The case, named after a Rolling Stones lyric, was used by only the small group of inside agents, who had interviewed the Australian ambassador to the United Kingdom, who had evidence of possible collusion between Russian Federation and a Trump adviser.

It was a breach of diplomatic protocol - which came after "tense deliberations" between Washington and Canberra - that helped to lay the foundations for the special counsel investigation into allegations of collusion between Donald Trump's campaign and Russian Federation, according to the New York Times.

The breakthrough stemmed from a night of heavy drinking Mr Downer had with former Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos at the Kensington Wine Rooms in London in May 2016.

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Donald Trump's relations with Australia were tested when he took office past year over a refugee swap deal and the FBI's investigation into his 2016 campaign has the potential to cause a new diplomatic rift.

The FBI agents summarised "their highly unusual interview" and their report helped provide the foundation for a case that became the probe headed by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation.

Trump has repeatedly slammed the probe as a witch hunt. And at least one government informant met several times with Mr. Page and Mr. Papadopoulos, current and former officials said.

He is co-operating with Mueller's investigation. For those reading, well acquainted with the Stones" back-catalogue, would've picked up on the fact that "Crossfire Hurricane" is indeed a reference to the 1969 classic "Jumpin' Jack Flash'. According to the story, what was then known as "Crossfire Hurricane" amongst the handful of agents involved, began months before election day.

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