“Last night I told you about how Don Jr. met with a Russian lawyer who claimed to have dirt on Hillary Clinton. Seemed pretty bad. But, it turned out – much worse,” Stephen Colbert said in opening Tuesday’s Late Show.

“Because then, The New York Times reported Trump was told in email this was a Russian effort to aid Trump’s campaign. Wow who could have predicted an email scandal would taint a presidential campaign?” he snarked.

“But we did not know what these emails were. We did not know if these emails were even real,” Colbert acknowledged. “How would we ever see them? For that Donald Trump Jr. would have to tweet them out this morning at 11 AM.”

“What are you doing?!” Colbert marveled rhetorically. “Who told him to do this? Does he even have a lawyer? Cause you rarely see a cop show where the lawyer burst into the interrogation room and shouts, ‘Keep talking! In fact, tweet out everything you know!’”

Don Jr.’s email exchange was with British music publicist Rob Goldstone, who met the Trumps at the 2013 Miss Universe Pageant In Moscow.

“Let’s dive into these emails,” Colbert told his audience. “Remember, it is going to take careful parsing to prove that the Trump campaign was privately colluding with Russia to get damaging confidential information about Hillary Clinton.”

The first email:

“Subject: Russia – Clinton – private and confidential.”

“We’re five words in, and four of them are Russia, Clinton private, confidential,” Colbert said.The only word that’s innocent is ‘and’.”

Goldstone, Colbert noted, could not have been clearer this was going to be shady stuff, [writing], “This is obviously very high level and sensitive information.”

“And, just to make sure that there’s no doubt about the radioactive criminality of the proposed meeting, Goldstone spells out that it’s ‘part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump’.”

Seventeen minutes later, Don Jr. responded: “Thanks Rob, I appreciate that… if it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer.”

“So, at this point I would like to issue a formal apology,” Colbert said. “I’d like to apologize to Eric Trump. We always thought you were the dumb one. We were wrong.”