Mueller files key sentencing recommendation for former Trump adviser Michael Flynn


Special counsel Robert Mueller recommended that former National Security Adviser Mike Flynn receive a sentence for lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation that included no prison time, in a court filing Tuesday that called Flynn's cooperation "substantial".

Flynn pleaded guilty in December 2017 to making false statements to the Federal Bureau of Investigation with regard to his communications with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

"Given the defendant's substantial assistance and other considerations set forth below, a sentence at the low end of the guideline range-including a sentence that does not impose a term of incarceration-is appropriate and warranted", Mueller's team wrote in a government memorandum filed on Tuesday evening.

Trump said previous year that Flynn was a "fine man", but he had to dismiss his national security adviser 21 days into the new administration because he had misled Vice President Mike Pence about his contacts with Russia's ambassador in Washington during the transition.

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller, the special counsel probing Russian interference in the 2016 election, departs Capitol Hill following a closed door meeting, June 21, 2017.

This week, Trump lashed out at his former legal fixer, Michael Cohen, saying he is making up "stories" to get a reduced prison sentence after his latest guilty plea to lying to Congress. Trump also praised longtime confidante Roger Stone for saying he would "never testify against Trump", adding in his tweet: "Nice to know some people still have 'guts!'"

Jim Watson  AFP  Getty Images
Jim Watson AFP Getty Images

Flynn was a close adviser to Trump during the campaign - and famously led a "lock her up" Hillary Clinton chant at the Republican National Convention. The plea deal said Flynn's cooperation may include answering questions, taking government-administered polygraph examinations, providing sworn statements and participating in "covert law enforcement activities".

Mr Flynn had been a fervent supporter of Mr Trump during the election campaign. Cohen told the Senate Intelligence Committee that discussions about the project with Russian Federation ended in January 2016, prior to the Iowa caucuses, the first contest in the presidential primaries. Unclear. We do know that Mueller has referred information to the Southern District of NY, including the criminal investigation of Michael Cohen that led to his guilty plea for campaign finance violations, as well as bank and tax fraud.

Flynn's interview occurred in January 2017, shortly after he took his post as national security adviser in the Trump White House. Van der Zwaan received a 30-day sentence and Papadopoulos got a 14-day sentence. Another possibility is the reported investigation of the Trump Foundation for possible campaign finance violations. This suggests that the investigation may not be wrapping up soon.

"Cohen made the false statements to ... give the false impression that the Moscow Project ended".

Tuesday's memo appears to list at least three ongoing investigations being pursued by the Justice Department.

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