Donald Trump slams James Comey after accusations on lying

  • 10/06/2017

President Donald Trump says he's been vindicated and is deriding James Comey as a "leaker" after the fired FBI director accused him of lying and trying to quash an investigation into a former national security adviser.

"Despite so many false statements and lies, total and complete vindication ... and WOW, Comey is a leaker!" Mr Trump tweeted on Friday in his first comments since Mr Comey appeared the day before at the Senate Intelligence Committee.

The Republican president stopped short of saying that Mr Comey lied under oath.

In the highly anticipated hearing, Mr Comey delivered a scathing indictment of Mr Trump, accusing him of trying to block a probe into ties between former national security adviser Michael Flynn and Russia, and saying the White House defamed him and the FBI in explaining his dismissal by Mr Trump last month.

Russia has denied such interference. The White House has denied collusion with Moscow.

Mr Comey told the Senate panel he took meticulous notes of each meeting or conversation he had with Mr Trump because "I was honestly concerned that he might lie about the nature of our meeting, and so I thought it really important to document".

Mr Comey testified Mr Trump told him on January 26 he expected loyalty from the FBI director and the next month urged him to drop the Flynn probe. "I hope you can let this go," Mr Comey reported the President as saying in a February 14 meeting.

Mr Comey told the Senate panel that he shared an unclassified memo about his February conversation with Mr Trump about Flynn because he hoped it would lead to the appointment of a special counsel.

After news reports in mid-May about the conversation, the Justice Department did just this, appointing Robert Mueller, a former FBI director, to oversee the Russia probe.

Mr Trump's personal lawyer Marc Kasowitz attacked Mr Comey after his testimony for leaking what he called "privileged communications" to the media.

Legal experts questioned whether Mr Trump's private encounters with Mr Comey could be considered privileged.

Mr Kasowitz plans to file a complaint early next week about Mr Comey's disclosure of conversations with the President, a person close to the legal team said on Friday.

He will file the complaint with the Justice Department's inspector general and also make a "submission" to the Senate's judiciary and intelligence committees about Mr Comey's testimony.