The former White House adviser, Stephen K Bannon said that Roger Stone was 'considered as an access point' by the United States President Donald Trump's campaign. Bannon was summoned by the US government to testify on 'Roger Stone trial' on November 8, where he said that Stone had boasted about his ties to WikiLeaks and its founder, Julian Assange. Stone is charged with witness tampering and lying to the Congress about his efforts to contact WikiLeaks in order to damage material during the Presidential campaign of 2016.
Bannon, who was also the CEO of Trump's campaign, acknowledged in court that the officials had sought information from the non-profit organization to release the emails which could damage the Presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton. This is also the first time any Trump's ally has confessed the campaign's active part in receiving the information. However, US intelligence agencies believe that WikiLeaks gathered data that has been hacked by the Russian government. Stone has pleaded not guilty of all the charges against him for obstructing justice in the US House of Representatives Intelligence Committee. In his testimony, Bannon has denied the campaign's official access to WikiLeaks.
Bannon said, “The campaign had no official access to WikiLeaks or to Julian Assange. But Roger would be considered if we needed an access point”.
Roger Stone, the comedian, and former talk show host told the jury in his trial that there was political operative pressure on him to lie to the Congress and thus, pleaded not guilty. Stone, who was also a confidant of Trump claimed that he had inside information that WikiLeaks can release and directly damage Clinton. However, Bannon said that even after Stone's repeated implication about his connections, he never stated it directly. Trump's campaign had taken Stone's assurance seriously enough to follow up and further asked the reason for Assange's not revealing the information during the press conference which was held in October 2016. Bannon did not make any statement about Trump, however, he clarified that the campaign did not send Stone to contact Assange.