Michael Flynn lied to the FBI and admitted it. Then he got advice from the lawyer Donald Trump has just had to get rid of.
Let’s go back four years. Donald Trump has just won the presidential election against Hillary Clinton. Retired Lieutenant General Michael Flynn is one of those who will help him with the transition to the White House.
Flynn has previously led the military intelligence service and is particularly known for two things: his criticism of President Barack Obama and his desire to improve US relations with Russia.
The latter would cost him his job. But now there are many indications that Trump will put an end to Flynn also receiving a prison sentence for his contact with Russia.
Talked about sanctions
Flynn was an important contributor to Trump during and after the 2016 presidential election. When the incoming president was to assemble his first administration, he quickly pointed to Flynn. He got the very central job as a national security adviser.
But before Trump had even moved into the White House, Flynn made a choice that would get him fired.
On December 29, 2016, he had several conversations with the Russian Washington Ambassador Sergei Kislyak. The two are said to have discussed sanctions that the then president Barack Obama introduced the same day against Russia. The purpose of the sanctions was to punish Russia for the country’s attempts to influence the election campaign in the United States.
The talks were revealed in February, just three weeks after Trump was inaugurated as president.
It did not get any better that Flynn denied having discussed sanctions with the Russian. He eventually had to confess that he had lied to both Vice President Mike Pence, the press and the FBI.
Hired controversial lawyer
The case against Flynn was what led to the appointment of specialist letter researcher Robert Mueller to investigate Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Flynn collaborated with Mueller and was questioned 19 times. He was found guilty of lying about his contact with Russia. Since then, he has been awaiting a verdict.
In January this year, however, he withdrew the confession.
Flynn had a new lawyer: Sidney Powell. The same lawyer that Trump recently fired after her lengthy allegations of electoral fraud in this year’s presidential election.
Powell worked hard to turn the case against Flynn. In an email to Attorney General William Barr, she is said to have written that the case had a corrupt distaste, according to The New York Times. She asked the Minister of Justice to handle the email “extremely confidentially”.
– The case smells corruption of our beloved government agencies for what seems to have a political purpose.
She claimed Flynn was a victim of a malicious prosecution, and that the case was a retaliation from the Obama administration.
Powell claimed that the FBI tried to get Flynn into a trap by enticing him to lie, a so-called “perjury trap” – or pervert in Norwegian. The idea was that the FBI should have asked questions that they knew would cause Flynn to lie.
The lawyer claimed that Trump won by millions of votes. Now she’s fired.
– An innocent man
This led to the Minister of Justice Barr initiating an investigation of the case. The investigation sparked several allegations against the Trump administration for interfering in the prosecution’s work.
Nevertheless, the criminal case was dropped in May. The Department of Justice concluded that even if Flynn had lied, the untruths were insignificant because the conversation he had with the FBI had no legitimate basis for investigating him.
The case could have stopped there, but a federal judge later demanded a new review of the case. Now Trump can finally put an end to the case.
Michael Flynn is one of several people Trump is considering pardoning before he resigns in January. Among others, Axios, CNN and The New York Times write that they get this stated by sources.
This is not a surprising move from Trump. He has repeatedly expressed his support for Flynn.
– He’s a wonderful man. I think he has been treated very, very unfairly by the media, the ones I call fake media in many cases, the president said after Flynn had to leave.
In April, Trump said Flynn “is being cleared.” In May, he called him “an innocent man.”
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