Full Timeline of the Mueller Investigation into Russian Meddling and Obstruction of Justice

When former FBI chief Robert Mueller took on the role of special counsel and began his investigation into Russian meddling during the 2016 presidential election in May of 2017, there were warnings that the U.S. was about to embark on a years-long process and not to expect instant gratification. It turns out those warnings were right, as more than two years later and even though the investigation has been concluded and the report produced, Mueller, his findings and the meaning behind those findings still dominate the national conversation.

Here's everything you need to know to be up to date before Mueller's House testimony Wednesday morning.

May, 2017

President Donald Trump fired FBI director James Comey and, almost immediately after, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appoints former FBI director Robert Mueller as special counsel to take over the probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential elections.

June 14, 2017

Mueller expands his investigation to include the possible obstruction of justice by President Donald Trump. The decision comes shortly after Comey testifies to the Senate Intelligence Committee that the president asked him to end his investigation into his former national security adviser Michael Flynn. The FBI had been investigating Flynn's contacts with Russian diplomats before the election and whether he had intentionally misled Vice President Mike Pence about those contacts.

October 30, 2017

Mueller's team serves its first indictment to former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort, who was charged with 12 counts that included conspiracy against the United States, money laundering and fraud. His partner, Richard Gates, is also served with five counts. Meanwhile, it's revealed that Trump's former campaign aide, George Papadopoulos, pleaded guilty to investigators about his contacts with Russia. He claimed to have lied to the FBI in order to protect the president.

December 1, 2017

Michael Flynn takes a plea deal with the FBI and agrees to cooperate with the special investigation. He becomes the first member of the Trump administration to plead guilty and admits to "willfully and knowingly [making] false, fictitious and fraudulent statements and representations" about his contacts with Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to the U.S.

February 16, 2018

Mueller charges 13 Russian nationals and three groups for interfering in the U.S. election. The charges claim that beginning in 2014, the Russians took on different personas and began internet campaigns to influence Americans and sway the elections.

February 20, 2018

A dutch lawyer, Alex van der Zwaan, pleads guilty for lying to the FBI about his interactions with Richard Gates and a person who remains unidentified in filings, referred to as "Person A."

February 22, 2018

Mueller files 32 new financial charges against Manafort and Gates.

February 23, 2018

Gates pleads guilty to two counts: conspiracy against the U.S. and making a false statement to the special team investigating Russian meddling. The plea deal says that Gates will fully cooperate with Mueller's team.

April 3, 2018

Van der Zwaan is the first to be sentenced in the Mueller investigation. He gets 30 days in prison and must pay $20,000 in fines.

April 9, 2018

The FBI raids the home, office and hotel room of Michael Cohen, the president's personal lawyer and fixer.

June 8, 2018

Mueller files more charges against Manafort, this time for conspiracy and obstruction of justice, laundering money and acting as an unregistered foreign agent. Manafort's aide, Konstantin Kilimnik, is also charged.

July 13, 2018

Mueller indicts 12 Russians, all part of Russia's military intelligence agency, for hacking and releasing the emails of the Democratic National Committee.

mueller-testimony
Special Counsel Robert Mueller arrives to make a statement about the Russia investigation on May 29, 2019 at the Justice Department in Washington, DC. Chip Somodevilla/Getty

August 21, 2018

Manafort is found guilty in a Virginia court on eight counts of bank and tax fraud. On that same day, Michael Cohen pleads guilty in New York to tax fraud and campaign finance violations. Over the next few months he reportedly spends multiple days speaking with the Mueller investigation.

September 7, 2018

Papadopoulos becomes the second to be sentenced in the Mueller investigation, this time to 14 days for lying to the FBI.

September 14, 2018

Manafort pleads guilty and agrees to cooperate with the Mueller investigation.

November 7, 2018

President Donald Trump fires his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, and appoints Matthew Whitaker as acting attorney general. Whitaker is a vocal critic of the Mueller probe. The change also means that Rod Rosenstein will no longer oversee the investigation.

November 20, 2018

Trump's lawyers claim they have submitted written answers to questions asked by the Mueller team.

November 29, 2018

Michael Cohen pleads guilty to lying to Congress about the details of negotiations around a Trump Tower project in Moscow.

December 4, 2018

Mueller recommends zero prison time for Flynn because of his "substantial contributions" to the case.

December 7, 2018

Even though Cohen is participating in the Mueller Investigation, federal prosecutors in New York recommend a "substantial term of imprisonment" for him. Mueller responds telling them they can do what they want and that he doesn't have an opinion.

December 12, 2018

Cohen is sentenced to three years in prison. He claims that the president told him to pay two women hush money for alleged affairs.

January 25, 2019

Roger Stone, a former campaign adviser and longtime friend of the president, is indicted and arrested in the Mueller investigation. The FBI raid of his home is dramatic and draws a lot of media attention.

Stone's trial will begin on November 5, 2019.

February 23, 2019

Mueller files an 800-page report on Paul Manafort, calling him a criminal who "repeatedly and brazenly" broke the law for decades. He recommends he spend 19.5 and 24.5 years in prison.

March 2019

Manafort is sentenced to 7.5 years prison time.

March 22, 2019

Mueller delivers his report to Attorney General William Barr, officially ending the investigation into Russian meddling and obstruction of justice after 22 months.

March 24, 2019

Barr reviews the report and sends a 4-page memo to Congress, which he says is a summary of the report's findings. The report did not find any collusion or conspiracy between members of the Trump administration and the Russian government to influence the election, said Barr. On obstruction of justice, he says that the report "does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him."

April 18, 2019

Faced with extreme pressure from Democratic lawmakers, Barr releases the full, albeit heavily-redacted version of the report.

April 30, 2019

A letter between Mueller and Barr is leaked where Mueller says Barr's summary did not "fully capture" the findings of the report. Barr testifies before Congress on May 1 about the findings.

May 29, 2019

Mueller declares "case closed" on the investigation and announces his intention to go back into retirement. He does add that "If we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so."

June 25, 2019

Mueller agrees to testify in front of Congress. The date is pushed back a few times until July 24 is settled upon.

Full Timeline of the Mueller Investigation into Russian Meddling and Obstruction of Justice | U.S.