Michael Flynn pleads guilty for making false statements to FBI

Michael Flynn, who served for a short time as the Trump administration’s National Security Adviser before being fired, has pleaded guilty to a charge of lying “willfully and knowingly” making false statements to the FBI while serving in the Trump administration

Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office announced the charge this morning.

Fox News: Michael Flynn charged in Russia investigation

Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn has been charged in the special counsel’s Russia investigation with making false statements to the FBI — and told a federal judge Friday he plans to plead guilty.

Flynn arrived at federal court in Washington, D.C., for the hearing Friday morning, shortly after Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office released a one-count charging document.

The false-statements charge pertains to Flynn’s interactions with the Russian ambassador in late December — specifically discussions about sanctions and other matters he apparently claimed never happened.

Updated:

Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn pleaded guilty Friday to a single count of making false statements to the FBI, becoming the latest Trump associate ensnared by Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

Flynn is accused of “willfully and knowingly” making the false statements to the FBI while serving in the Trump administration.

The false statements were:

“On or about Dec 29, 2016, FLYNN did not ask the Government of Russia’s Ambassador to the United States (“Russian Ambassador”) to refrain from escalating situation in response to sanctions that the United States had imposed against Russia that same day; and FLYNN did not recall the Russian Ambassador subsequently telling him that Russia had chosen to moderate its response to those sanctions as a result of his request; and … On or about December 22, 2016, FLYNN did not ask the Russian Ambassador to delay the vote on or defeat a pending United Nations Security Council resolution; and  that the Russian Ambassador subsequently never described to FLYNN Russia’ response to his request.”

The single charge of lying to the FBI has raised speculation that Flynn has ‘flipped’ and is now helping the FBI with their inquiries. Earlier this had been seen as an aim of the Mueller investigation.

The fact that he’s facing just one count prompted immediate speculation Friday that Flynn could be cooperating and offering information to Mueller’s team.

“We simply don’t know” whether Flynn is giving “deliverables” to Mueller on other Trump associates, constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley said on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.”

A Flynn plea deal had been rumored ever since his attorneys informed President Trump’s legal team they could no longer discuss the investigation.

The move prompted speculation Flynn might be cooperating with Mueller’s investigators and discussing a deal.

Flynn, who was interviewed by the FBI just days after Trump’s inauguration, was forced to resign in February after White House officials said he had misled them about whether he had discussed sanctions with the ambassador, Sergey Kislyak.

A few days earlier from Fox: White House Should Be ‘Very Concerned’ About Flynn’s Lawyers Not Sharing Info

Judge Andrew Napolitano said he believes the White House should be “very concerned” about reports that lawyers for Gen. Michael Flynn, formerly President Trump’s national security adviser, are no longer sharing information with Trump’s attorneys.

Flynn’s lawyers, according to reports in recent days, told the president’s legal team that they can no longer discuss Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and potential collusion by the Trump campaign.

The reports have led to speculation that Flynn is cooperating with Mueller’s investigative team.

Judge Napolitano, who often features on Fox News, also said:

‘Monumental’ reduction of charges doesn’t come for free.

In other words, a deal has been done on charges to get Flynn to testify against the Trump campaign team.

This makes the Russian investigation more serious for Trump and his administration. If past behaviour is any guide it is likely to be strongly countered and criticised publicly.

White House Lawyer Ty Cobb:

“Nothing about the guilty plea or the charge implicates anyone other than Mr. Flynn.”

Cobb said that Flynn’s false statements to FBI ‘mirror the false statements to White House officials’ that led to his resignation

AN UPDATE ALREADY:

ABC News: Flynn has promised Special Counsel ‘full cooperation’ in Russia probe

Retired Lt. Gen Michael Flynn has promised “full cooperation” in the special counsel’s Russia investigation and, according to a confidant, and is prepared to testify that Donald Trump directed him to make contact with the Russians, initially as a way to work together to fight ISIS in Syria.

A close confidant told ABC News that Flynn felt abandoned by Trump in recent weeks, and told friends about the decision to make the plea deal within the last 24 hours as he grew increasingly concerned about crippling legal costs he would face if he continued to contest the charges.

A few furious tweets are unlikely to fix this.

 

 

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6 Comments

  1. David

     /  December 2, 2017

    A nothing burger again. Everyone knows he had contact with Russians “after” Trump was elected and that he was less than honest about it specifically to Pence and thats why Trump fired him. Given the size of Meullers team and the lack of any real hard evidence of campaign collusion its probably about time to call the whole thing off, the Manafort charges are enough evidence its gone way outside its original intent.

    • wackAmole

       /  December 2, 2017

      ” its gone way outside its original intent.”

      The intent is to handicap the Trump administration with a witch hunt, throw as much mud as possible at it and hope something sticks.

      The only things they get out of Flynn is Trump collusion with Israel and a situation where Trump attempts to influence the Russians to get them to stay calm in the face of provocations by a departing anti Russian Obama.

      Nothing there to support the Washington DC swamp creatures conspiracy theory that the Russians stole the election off Hillary.

  2. Gezza

     /  December 2, 2017

    This bizarre soap opera continues. Christ know who’s writing the scripts. US Reality TV politics has finally fully descended into tragi-comedy & utter bloody farce.

  3. Backers of a U.S.-Russian plan to build nuclear reactors across the Middle East bragged after the U.S. election they had backing from Donald Trump’s national security adviser Michael Flynn for a project that required lifting sanctions on Russia, documents reviewed by Reuters show.

    The documents do not show whether Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general, took concrete steps to push the proposal with Trump and his aides. But they do show that Washington-based nuclear power consultancy ACU Strategic Partners believed that both Flynn, who had worked as an adviser to the firm as late as mid-2016, and Trump were firmly in its corner.

    “Donald Trump’s election as president is a game changer because Trump’s highest foreign policy priority is to stabilize U.S. relations with Russia which are now at a historical low-point,” ACU’s managing director, Alex Copson, wrote in a Nov. 16, 2016 email to potential business partners, eight days after the election.

  4. Cheryl

     /  December 4, 2017

    As President Trump said, it is too bad he lied because there was nothing to lie about. Compare that with all the lies that Hillary made when there was actually something to hide and she goes free??? Travesty of justice!