Trump's son reportedly was told anti-Hillary info was part of Russian government plan before meeting

Key Points
  • Trump's son was told he would get compromising information on Clinton from a Russian government effort to aid his father's campaign, the NYT reported Monday, citing three sources.
Donald Trump Jr.
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U.S. President Donald Trump's son was told in an email that he would receive compromising information on Hillary Clinton as part of a Russian government effort to aid his father's campaign, the New York Times reported Monday, citing three sources.

The sources told the newspaper that the 2016 email to Donald Trump Jr., which aimed to set up a meeting with a Kremlin-tied attorney, was sent by publicist Rob Goldstone and indicated that the Russian government was the source of the damaging information on Clinton's campaign.

Goldstone didn't immediately return CNBC's emailed request for comment, which was sent outside of office hours.

Goldstone told the New York Times on Monday that he was told that the attorney had damaging information, but denied to the paper that he had knowledge of Russian government involvement.

After the email was described to the New York Times, the report said efforts to reach Goldstone for further comment were unsuccessful.

The meeting also included Trump son-in-law and White House adviser, Jared Kushner, and the then-chairman of Trump's campaign, Paul J. Manafort, the report said.

The New York Times reported that when first asked on Saturday, Trump's son said the meeting was primarily about adoptions, with nothing about Clinton mentioned.

But on Sunday, Trump's son issued a statement saying that the "claims of potentially helpful information" on the Clinton campaign were "a pretext" to set up a meeting on adoption of Russian children and a U.S. law blacklisting Russians suspected of human rights abuses.

The younger Trump took to Twitter on Monday to say the two statements weren't inconsistent and that he merely provided more detail later.

Donald Trump Jr.: No inconsistency in statements, meeting ended up being primarily about adoptions. In response to further Q's I simply provided more details.

Donald Trump Jr.: Obviously I'm the first person on a campaign to ever take a meeting to hear info about an opponent... went nowhere but had to listen.

Trump Jr.'s attorney, Alan Futerfas, denied that his client had done anything wrong in a statement.

"Don Jr. had no knowledge as to what specific information, if any, would be discussed. Further, at no time was there ever any understanding or commitment that he, or anyone else, would find the information, whatever it turned out to be, to be reliable, credible or of interest, or would even survive due diligence," Futerfas said.

"The meeting lasted about 20-30 minutes, and nothing came of it. His father knew nothing about it," Futerfas said.

According to the New York Times report, White House deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said at the briefing room that "the president's campaign did not collude in any way. Don Jr. did not collude with anybody to influence the election. No one within the Trump campaign colluded in order to influence the election."

Representatives for the younger Trump and Kushner did not immediately return CNBC's emailed requests for comment, which were sent outside of office hours.

President Trump's attorney said in a statement that he wasn't aware of and didn't attend the meeting.

For more on the reported meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a Kremlin-connected lawyer, see the report in The New York Times.