The court of the district of Columbia postponed the sentencing of the former adviser to Donald Trump Michael Flynn, so he finished testifying to the investigation. Flynn urged the Russian Ambassador that the sanctions imposed at the end of 2016, it is not necessary to respond. He’s being tried for hiding that fact from the FBI.
The judge agreed to postpone the sentencing and gave Flynn another three months to cooperate with the investigation in the case of Russian interference in the US election.
Flynn is a retired Lieutenant General and former national security adviser to the Donald Trump administration. He pleaded guilty to lying to FBI agents a year ago and cooperated with the investigation.
The office of the special Prosecutor, Robert Mueller, in a motion addressed to the judge rated his assistance to the investigation so highly that it recommended that Flynn not be sentenced to prison.
Flynn worked as an Advisor to the President for a record short time: from January 20, 2017 — the day of Trump’s inauguration — until February 13 of the same year, when he was forced to resign.
Formally, this was due to the fact that Flynn incorrectly informed Vice President Mike Pence about the content of his telephone conversations in December 2016 with Sergei Kislyak, who then held the post of Russian Ambassador to the United States.
As a result, Flynn was one of the accused in the investigation of special Prosecutor Robert Mueller about Russia’s interference in the US elections and the possible collusion of the trump team with the Kremlin.
What are the charges against Flynn
On January 24, 2017, Flynn was visited in the White house by FBI agents, who then conducted an investigation of Russian interference in the elections. He answered the questions of agents about his communication with Kislyak.
An FD-302 memo containing Flynn’s testimony was sent by special Prosecutor Muller to the court of the district of Columbia on Monday evening, on the eve of the verdict, at the request of a Federal judge.
Flynn’s lie concerned the events of the end of 2016. On December 28, outgoing President Obama announced the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats, the closure of several Russian diplomatic facilities in the United States and the introduction of new sanctions in response to interference in the American election process.
On this day, Flynn spoke several times on the phone with the Russian Ambassador. Kislyak’s phone, according to American media, was bugged by the FBI.
The General asked the Ambassador not to react harshly to the sanctions, explaining that the new administration would be able to cancel many decisions of the previous one.
In response to a question from FBI agents about whether he remembers any conversations with Kislyak in which he urged him not to escalate the situation and not to respond on an “eye for an eye” principle, Flynn replied: “actually no. I don’t recall. There was no such — “do not do anything.”
Flynn argued that he was very surprised by the Obama administration’s reaction to the alleged Russian intervention — he said he could still understand the expulsion of one person — but not the expulsion of 35 diplomats.
On other questions about his conversations with Kislyak Flynn also basically answered in the spirit that he does not remember the details. He said he was trying to have a good relationship with the Russian Ambassador and “move on,” according to a document sent to court by special Prosecutor Muller.
What the court said
This lie became the basis of the charges in the Flynn case. At the announcement of the verdict, Flynn said that he” was aware ” that the lie in the FBI interrogation threatens punishment.
He also confirmed that he pleaded guilty. The court accepted his plea bargain and plea.
“I do not hide my disgust, my contempt for this crime,” said the judge Emmett Sullivan, appointed by President Clinton. “Probably, it undermines all the things for which there is the flag, he continued, pointing to the US flag. “You probably sold your country.”
Despite the stance of both the prosecution and the defense, the judge Sullivan refused to guarantee that Flynn would escape prison.
He suggested that Flynn postpone sentencing until he finished cooperating with the investigation. The judge also called the very serious charges brought against the former adviser to Trump.
After the break, Flynn himself asked to postpone the sentencing. The court agreed and gave him another three months to cooperate with the investigation.