Back in 2016, as polls showed Donald Trump losing badly to his Democratic challenger, Hillary Clinton, a longtime Republican activist, Peter W. Smith, tried to obtain Clinton’s emails from the State Department, even going so far as to raise at least $100,00 for paying off anyone who might have access to the electronic communiqués and be willing to sell them.
Smith was never able to obtain the trove of Clinton emails from her time as Secretary of State, and he died under mysterious circumstances on May 14, 2017. His death was later ruled a suicide, but some have suggested he didn’t die of natural causes:
“Smith’s suicide note declares, ‘No foul play whatsoever,’ ‘recent bad turn in health since January, 2017,’ ‘life insurance of $5 million expiring.’ It is entirely possible this is true. But there is at least some reason to doubt that Smith decided to take his own life to claim an expiring life-insurance payment due to a sudden turn in his health.”
This week, a new report from the Wall Street Journal reveals that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is probably investigating Smith’s death as murder. As Jonathan Chait of New York magazine noted on October 9:
“The Journal got in touch with somebody who spoke with Smith shortly before his death. ‘Retired Wall Street financier Charles Ortel said he spoke with Mr. Smith on the phone in the hours before his death about a new project to brief the Obama Foundation and warn its leaders against the mistakes they believed were made by the Clinton Foundation,’ reports the Journal. ‘According to Mr. Ortel, Mr. Smith sounded excited, and he began brainstorming who to contact and how to proceed.'”
This new reporting also ties in with something Betsy Woodruff of The Daily Beast posted earlier this year about a new prosecutor who joined the Mueller team. The prosecutor, Kathryn Rakoczy, was known for focusing on violent crimes:
“An assistant U.S. attorney in the district of D.C., Rakoczy is best known for her work on violent crime cases. She focused on misdemeanors until about eight years ago, and then shifted to primarily prosecuting D.C. street crime. A Washington criminal defense attorney familiar with her work, who spoke anonymously to prevent tension between himself and Rakoczy, said her work for Mueller has generated some head-scratching, since Mueller isn’t investigating any violent street crimes.”
Which brings us back to the death of Smith, as Chait surmises:
“This would support the likelihood that Mueller is investigating Smith’s death as a murder. It is obviously possible that Smith suddenly decided to commit suicide after this conversation without betraying any hint of his intention, and while sounding excited about a future plan. But it is looking increasingly plausible that somebody in fact killed him.”
Was Smith eliminated because he knew too much and could implicate powerful figures such as Trump, Vladimir Putin, and others who were involved in the conspiracy with Russia?
Rest assured Robert Mueller will get to the bottom of all the crimes, and he may even wind up bringing murder charges.