WASHINGTON (Reuters) – One of U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s top prosecutors is leaving the Department of Justice, according to a National Public Radio report on Thursday, possibly signalling the end of the federal investigation into alleged Russian interference in the presidential election.
Andrew Weissmann is departing the Special Counsel’s Office to teach at New York University (NYU), the NPR report said, citing two sources close to the matter. Politico also reported his departure, citing one source familiar with the move.
A spokesman for Mueller, whose team has been investigating Russia’s role in the 2016 presidential election and possible collusion with U.S. President Donald Trump’s campaign, had no comment on the reports.
Representatives for NYU did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Weissmann led the case against U.S. President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who was sentenced this week in a second federal criminal case and faces more than seven years in prison for crimes ranging from tax and bank fraud to conspiracy.
Mueller has led the U.S. probe into Russia since 2017, four months after Trump took office in the White House. The investigation so far has charged numerous people, including several top Trump advisers and a series of Russians, with a range of crimes.
Moscow has denied any election interference, and Trump has repeatedly called the investigation a “witch hunt” and said there was no collusion.
(Additional reporting by Karen Freifeld; Writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Bernadette Baum)