Former US President Donald Trump has sued Hillary Clinton, the Democrats, their lawyers, former FBI employees and everyone connected to the “Steele Dossier” for conspiracy to falsely accuse him of “collusion” with Russia in 2016, and undermining his presidency afterwards.
The lawsuit, filed in the federal court in the Southern District of Florida on Thursday, seeks $72 million in damages, triple the estimated $24 million in legal fees and other damages Trump said he suffered as the result of the conduct.
“For years, Hillary Clinton and her cohorts attempted to shield themselves from culpability by directing others to do their dirty work for them. This lawsuit seeks to hold all parties accountable for their heinous acts and uphold the principles of our sacred democracy,” Trump’s attorney Alina Habba said in a statement, adding that the suit “outlines the Defendants’ nefarious plot to vilify Donald J. Trump by spreading lies to weave a false narrative that he was colluding with Russia.”
In addition to Clinton and the Democratic National Committee, the lawsuit names former DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and Clinton campaign chief John Podesta; Christopher Steele, the British spy who authored the infamous “Trump-Russia dossier;” the political research firm Fusion GPS, which commissioned the file; the law firm Perkins Coie, through which Clinton paid Fusion GPS and Steele; and former FBI officials James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and Kevin Clinesmith – who played a major role in investigating Trump for alleged ties with Russia before and after the election.
Clinton aides Robbie Mook, Philipe Reines, and Jake Sullivan – currently the national security adviser – are also among the defendants, along with former Perkins Coie lawyers Marc Elias and Michael Sussmann, who was charged by special counsel John Durham with lying to the FBI.
“Acting in concert, the Defendants maliciously conspired to weave a false narrative that their Republican opponent, Donald J. Trump, was colluding with a hostile foreign sovereignty,” says the lawsuit.
The defendants falsified evidence, deceived law enforcement and exploited their access to “highly-sensitive data sources” in a way that “even the events of Watergate pale in comparison,” the lawsuit also claims, referring to the 1972 scandal that forced the resignation of President Richard Nixon.
When the scheme failed to stop Trump from getting elected, the lawsuit claims “the Defendants’ efforts continued unabated, merely shifting their focus to undermining his presidential administration.”
Trump’s lawyers accuse the defendants of violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act, conspiracy, injurious falsehood, malicious prosecution, computer fraud and abuse, and theft of trade secrets, among other things.
Clinton sought to discredit Trump in 2016 by accusing him of “colluding” with Russia, and blamed Moscow for the alleged hack of the DNC emails and those of Podesta, which were later published by WikiLeaks. Neither the FBI, nor special counsel Robert Mueller, nor the investigations led by congressional Democrats, ever found any evidence for those claims.