Former chairman of the Trump campaign Paul Manafort was wiretapped by federal investigators before, during, and after the 2016 general election; fueling speculation that private conversations between President Trump and senior aides was intercepted by Obama officials prior to his inauguration.
According to Fox News, the wiretapping was authorized by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) in 2014 as part of an ongoing FBI investigation over Manafort’s financial ties to Russia and Ukrainian officials.
The initial order expired in 2016 but was extended to early 2017.
Paul Manafort is a central figure in special counsel Robert Mueller’s ongoing investigation into allegations that Russian officials meddled in the US presidential election on behalf of the Trump campaign.
His home in northern Virginia was raided by FBI officials in July.
The revelation that the federal government wiretapped senior Trump aides vindicates comments made by the President earlier this year, claiming that Obama officials had been listening to his private conversations.
“Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my ‘wires tapped’ in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!” tweeted the President in March.