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FBI drops dozens of documents on Trump dossier author Christopher Steele. There's just one problem.

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The FBI released 71 pages of mostly redacted pages detailing its relationship with Trump dossier author Christopher Steele. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Late on Friday evening, the FBI dumped dozens of documents detailing its relationship with former British intelligence officer Christoper Steele, who is responsible for compiling the infamous Trump dossier.

However, there was one major problem with the documents: They are mostly redacted, providing little insight into the controversial relationship.

What are the details?

The 71 pages are heavily redacted and mostly consist of payment receipts to Steele, who is identified as a "Confidential Human Source." Otherwise, Steele's name does not appear anywhere in the documents.

Because of the heavy redactions, the exact date when the FBI began conferring with Steele to gather intelligence on then-presidential candidate Donald Trump is not clear.

However, one partially unredacted paragraph points to February 2016 as the likely starting date, according to NBC News.

NBC News explains:

The records also indicate that in February 2016 the FBI “admonished” Steele. A federal law enforcement official explains that an admonishment is typically given when a person begins a stint as a confidential informant and annually thereafter. It is a briefing on the rules of being an informant to ensure the source complies with guidelines set by the Attorney General, and usually not criticism of the source.

The documents also confirm information revealed in the Carter Page FISA application: that the government ended its relationship with Steele after he leaked sensitive information to the press and informed a third party he was working as a confidential source for the bureau.

"On November 1, 2016, CHS confirmed all of this to the handling agent," the document states. "Additionally, handling agent advised that CHS was not to operate to obtain any intelligence whatsoever on behalf of the FBI."

The documents were released in response to a Freedom of Information Act Request, according to Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.). It appears they were declassified in mid-June.

Who is Steele?

Steele, a former MI6 agent with deep connections in Russia, was hired by opposition research firm Fusion GPS to conduct research on Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign.

Steele's intelligence gathering eventually led to the compiling of the so-called "anti-Trump" dossier, which contains mostly unsubstantiated claims about President Donald Trump. The dossier was made public in January 2017 when BuzzFeed published it.

It was later revealed in October 2017 that Hillary Clinton's campaign and the Democratic National Committee helped fund the salacious document.

The Carter Page FISA application documents, which were released last month, showed the FBI heavily relied on Steele's dossier when obtaining FISA surveillance warrants on the former Trump campaign aide.

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