Key Witness in Mueller Investigation Arrested on Child Porn Charges Again


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Washington (CNN) George Aref Nader, who was a key witness in special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, was arrested on child pornography charges Monday in New York, federal prosecutors announced Monday.Nader was arrested upon arrival at John F. Kennedy International Airport for “transporting visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.”He previously pleaded guilty to the same charge in 1991, the Justice Department said.If convicted, he faces a minimum sentence of 15 years in prison and a maximum of 40 years.

Nader was charged by prosecutors in Virginia, but made his initial appearance before a magistrate judge in Brooklyn on Monday. US Magistrate Judge Cheryl Pollack postponed a decision on Nader’s bail until Tuesday in order to give Nader’s attorney additional time to provide details of a proposed security arrangement that can accommodate what the attorney said is his client’s serious medical condition.Pollack said if not for Nader’s health concerns she would have ordered him remanded to the Eastern District of Virginia.”He has every incentive to flee,” she said.

Pollack ordered Nader to be detained overnight ahead of his bail hearing scheduled for Tuesday afternoon, according to the office of the US Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.The Mueller report mentions Nader in nearly four dozen footnotes, including references to his interviews with special counsel investigators, and other materials, like his emails and text messages.Prosecutors filed a secret criminal complaint against Nader on January 17, 2018, according to the Justice Department. CNN previously reported that Nader was questioned by the FBI on that date, the first of several sessions with investigators from Mueller’s office.

Investigators seized electronic devices from Nader that same day and had a warrant to search his luggage, according to the Justice Department. The warrants were issued in relation to a “matter unrelated to child pornography,” according to the FBI.

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