Flynn argues against prison time in Russian Federation investigation

Mueller confirmed the contacts 14 close to the Trump entities with the Russians, – WP

Flynn is relaxed and hopeful even as the possibility of prison looms when he's sentenced in the Russian Federation probe Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018.

Flynn met with the special counsel's office 19 times regarding matters that include Mueller's investigation into whether Russian Federation meddled in the 2016 USA presidential election.

Nevertheless, Flynn agreed to the interview, and told McCabe that he wouldn't bring with him any lawyers, which McCabe told Flynn would have required going through some extra hoops on his end at the Justice Department.

Court filings revealed that Flynn met 19 times with Mueller's team and other Justice Department offices, suggesting vast cooperation. One of the documents is a memo authored by former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe summarizing his involvement in Flynn's January 24, 2017, FBI interview.

In addition, the Federal Bureau of Investigation agents did not file a report on the interview until seven months after it was conducted, the lawyers said.

"A sitting National Security Adviser, former head of an intelligence agency, retired Lieutenant General, and 33-year veteran of the armed forces knows he should not lie to federal agents", Mueller's office said in the court filing.

Steven Levin, a former federal prosecutor, said the documents made clear that Flynn knew agents wanted to talk to him about Kislyak, and that his lies were intentional and "not simply off-the-cuff remarks". Then FBI agents, who already knew the answers because they'd read the transcript, rushed to the White House to ask questions about a perfectly legitimate phone call.

Flynn, 60, pleaded guilty to lying to FBI investigators on December 1, 2017 - the first high-ranking Trump adviser to agree to formally cooperate with the special counsel's probe.

The back-and-forth between prosecutors and defense lawyers has created an unusual rupture in an otherwise harmonious relationship as prosecutors had praised Flynn as a model cooperator and recommended that he receive no prison time at his sentencing.

Law enforcement officials grew so concerned about his contacts with Kislyak and his false accounts of them that they warned the White House that Flynn might be compromised by the Kremlin.

Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn resigned under pressure on February 13 after only 24 days on the job, setting a record for the shortest tenure in the post.

"Flynn was so talkative, and had so much time for them, that Strzok wondered if the National Security Adviser did not have more important things to do than have such a relaxed, non-pertinent discussion with them", according to notes from the interview.

Attorneys for Paul Manafort say they're still deciding whether to dispute allegations that their client lied to investigators and breached his plea agreement with special counsel Robert Mueller. The closest he's gotten to commenting on his case was in a campaign appearance for an ultimately unsuccessful Republican congressional candidate in California earlier this year, telling the crowd he wasn't there "to complain about who has done me wrong or how unfair I've been treated or how unfair the entire process has been".

The special counsel's office also notes that Flynn, who was previously a high-ranking national security official, should have been cognizant of what he was doing.

The meeting with Flynn in the White House was set up by then-FBI Deputy Director Andy McCabe, who served as the agency's acting director after James Comey was sacked by Trump as FBI director in May 2017.

When Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Moscow would not retaliate, Kislyak called Flynn to say the decision was in response to his request, according to court documents.

Heck said Butina is just "one of many". Trump also plays a central role in a separate case in NY, where prosecutors have implicated him in a crime.

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