Speculation ran wild after special counsel Bob Mueller’s team Tuesday asked a court for an 11-day extension on a filing deadline because prosecutors were too busy “with the press of other work.”
Mueller’s team made the filing in response to a motion by The Washington Post to unseal certain documents related to convicted former Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort’s case.
Mueller’s team asked for the deadline to be extended until April.
“The counsel responsible for preparing the response face the press of other work and require additional time to consult within the government,” Mueller’s team wrote in the filing.
It’s unclear what the special counsel’s team is so busy working on. The prosecutors referenced in the filing are Michael Dreeben and Adam Jed.
“There are no imminent deadlines in Roger Stone’s case, or the two appeals from a Stone associate and a mystery company,” Vox reported. “There’s a March 25 deadline in the Russian troll farm case, but Dreeben and Jed don’t appear to be involved in that filing.”
What is Mueller’s team up to?
It’s unclear if Dreeben and Jed are working on an unknown case or if they are helping to write the Mueller report.
“Both Dreeben and Jed are appellate attorneys rather than trial prosecutors. So it would make sense if they were spending their time on Mueller’s biggest task of all, his report, for which there are unsettled legal and constitutional issues about what information can be made public and how to handle Trump’s role as president,” wrote Vox’s Andrew Prokop. “It is also possible, though, that the pair are working on some other secret matter we don’t know about.”
Mueller’s probe may be coming to an end:
Though several cases are ongoing, Mueller’s investigation appears to be heading toward the finish line.
Top prosecutor Andrew Weissmann, who oversaw the Manafort case, is leaving the team and the Justice Department. Top FBI investigator David Archey has already left and took on a new assignment at the bureau. CNN reported that the grand jury in Mueller’s probe has not convened since before Roger Stone was indicted.
Politico reported that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein would delay his planned departure from the Justice Department so he can stay on until the end of the probe.
Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller, is putting off his departure for “at least several weeks” to “shepherd the politically charged probe to its long-awaited conclusion. Rosenstein has long provided comfort to lawmakers and legal observers worried about President Donald Trump trying to meddle with the inquiry, which is examining whether his 2016 campaign colluded with Russia,” Politico reported.