Bannon says Stone was Trump campaign link to WikiLeaks

WASHINGTON — Donald Trump’s campaign viewed Roger Stone as an ‘‘access point’’ to WikiLeaks and tried to use him to get advanced word about hacked e-mails damaging to Hillary Clinton that the antisecrecy group released during the 2016 presidential race, a former top Trump adviser testified Friday.

In reluctant testimony, former campaign CEO Steve Bannon told a federal court that Stone, on trial for lying to Congress and witness tampering, had boasted about his ties to WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange.

‘‘The campaign had no official access to WikiLeaks or to Julian Assange,’’ Bannon told the court. ‘‘But Roger would be considered if we needed an access point.’’


It was the first time that anyone affiliated with the Trump campaign acknowledged in court that they had actively sought material from WikiLeaks, which released material that US intelligence agencies determined had been hacked by the Russian government in order to damage Clinton. The White House had no immediate comment.

Associated Press