Russian intelligence operatives tried in 2013 to recruit an American businessman and eventual foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign who is now part of the F.B.I. investigation into Russia’s interference into the American election, according to federal court documents and a statement issued by the businessman.
The businessman, Carter Page, met with one of three Russians who were eventually charged with being undeclared officers with Russia’s foreign intelligence service, known as the S.V.R. The F.B.I. interviewed Mr. Page in 2013 as part of an investigation into the spy ring, but decided that he had not known the man was a spy, and the bureau never accused Mr. Page of wrongdoing.
The court documents say that Mr. Page, who founded an investment company in New York called Global Energy Capital, provided documents about the energy business to one of the Russians, Victor Podobnyy, thinking he was a businessman who could help with brokering deals in Russia.
In fact, Mr. Podobnyy was an S.V.R. officer posing as an attaché at the Russian mission to the United Nations.
Court documents do not identify Mr. Page, but the details in a statement he emailed to reporters on Tuesday match the individual described as “Male-1” in the court case. Mr. Page’s contact with the Russian spy was first reported on Monday by BuzzFeed News.
The disclosure is the latest to shed light on Mr. Page’s extensive contacts with Russian businessmen and government officials. A former Moscow-based investment banker for Merrill Lynch, Mr. Page joined the Trump campaign last year and traveled to Russia in July to deliver a speech to the New Economic School, a Moscow university.
The trip caught the attention of United States intelligence agencies. Later that month, the F.B.I. opened a counterintelligence investigation into Russian attempts to influence the presidential election and whether any of Mr. Trump’s associates were involved in that effort. American businessmen who visit Russia, even those who are not advising a presidential campaign, are frequently targeted by Russian operatives trying to collect information about the United States.
Mr. Page has given few specifics about whom he met with on that trip. In an interview with The New York Times last month, he said he had met with…