3 CNN staffers are out over retracted Russia investigation story

A CNN reporter and two editors have resigned over a story the news network retracted days ago.

The article written by Thomas Frank claimed that the Senate Intelligence Committee was looking into Anthony Scaramucci, a former Goldman Sachs executive and key member of President Donald Trump’s transition team, over a meeting he had with Kirill Dmitriev, an executive from the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), during the transition.

Frank, editor Eric Lichtblau, and the editor-in-chief of “CNN Investigates,” Lex Haris, have resigned from CNN.

Frank’s story, which cited only one source, alleged that RDIF was linked to the Russian state bank, Venesheconombank, an institution that has previously been subject to US sanctions. Several Russia-linked media outlets denied the connection, according to The Washington Post.

CNN’s story also said that the Senate Intelligence Committee’s alleged inquiry into Scaramucci’s meeting with RDIF was being done in concert with a separate investigation of Jared Kushner’s December meeting with Venesheconombank CEO Sergey Gorkov, a matter that has gained increased scrutiny as the Russia investigation focused more closely on Kusher’s business dealings in recent weeks.

Scaramucci denied any wrongdoing, and later applauded CNN for doing “the right thing” by retracting the story:

“It’s OK. I did nothing wrong. They like hitting friends of POTUS who are loyal advocates on his behalf,” Scaramucci said in a tweet. “CNN did the right thing. Classy move. Apology accepted,” Scaramucci said after CNN retracted the story. “Everyone makes mistakes. Moving on.”

Here is the retraction CNN posted on Friday:

On June 22, 2017, CNN.com published a story connecting Anthony Scaramucci with investigations into the Russian Direct Investment Fund.
That story did not meet CNN’s editorial standards and has been retracted. Links to the story have been disabled. CNN apologizes to Mr. Scaramucci.

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