The New York Times reported earlier this week that a member of the Saudi hit team, sent to the consulate to kill Khashoggi on 2 October, told a superior over the phone to "tell your boss" that the operation had been accomplished.
Khashoggi's murder has provoked global outrage but little concrete action by major powers against Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil exporter and a strong proponent of USA policy to contain Iranian influence across the Middle East.
Asked if the audio links Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to the killing, Bolton said: "That's not the conclusion I think that the people who heard it have come to, and that's certainly not the position of the Saudi government". "Indeed when the Saudi intelligence officer listened to the recordings he was so shocked he said: "This one must have taken heroin, only someone who takes heroin would do this", he added.
Though the audio recording does not conclusively implicate Crown Prince, analysts say it's an important clue.
"We categorically deny the reporting referencing the crown prince in this matter or that he had any knowledge whatsoever of it", a Saudi official told the Journal on Tuesday.
Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist, disappeared since he entered Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 to obtain documentation certifying he divorced his ex-wife so he could remarry.
"As I've mentioned in my article [in The Washington Post], I could not have such [accusatory] thoughts toward King Salman, whom I greatly respect, but we want that the person who gave the order to be revealed", he said.
Turkish media have revealed airport X-ray images they claim shows specialist equipment carried by the Saudi hitmen accused of murdering journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
United States officials have heard a recording of the call in which a "boss" is referred to, one person familiar with the matter said. Bolton has said he has not heard the tape himself.
Under mounting pressure, Saudi Arabia has changed its narrative about Khashoggi's killing.
He ran social media for Prince Mohammed, masterminded the arrest of hundreds of Saudi Arabia's elite late past year in a campaign Riyadh said aimed at rooting out corruption, and took a harsh line against neighbouring Qatar when Saudi Arabia imposed an economic boycott of the Gulf state in June 2017. Prior to the visit, the British government said Hunt "will call on the Saudi authorities to do more to deliver justice and accountability for the Khashoggi family".
"We are reviewing our arms sales to Saudi Arabia in view of this killing and, obviously, during this period of review no new arms export permits will be signed", Freeland said in Windsor, Ont.
"The head of the investigation unit at the Daily Sabah, Nazif Kerman, emphasised that Khashoggi was strangled by a bag placed on his head, according to sound recordings seized by the Turkish authorities".
Saudi officials said the Turks have not provided audio to them that includes the phrase "tell your boss".
Erdogan has not given details of the contents of the tapes but two sources with knowledge of the issue have told Reuters that Turkey has several audio recordings.