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Tag: special counsel

Michael Cohen Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison, Blaming Blind Loyalty to Trump

Michael Cohen, former attorney for President Trump.

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

President Trump’s former longtime attorney and self-described fixer was sentenced to three years in prison after pleading guilty to nine federal charges, including making secret payments to women who claimed to have had affairs with Trump.

The charges also included lying to congress about his involvement with a proposed Trump Tower in Moscow and failing to report millions of dollars in income.

Cohen, 52, told Judge William Pauley that his loyalty to Trump led him “to choose darkness over light.”

“Recently the president tweeted a statement calling me weak and it was correct, but for a much different reason than he was implying. It was because time and time again I felt it was my duty to cover up his dirty deeds,” Cohen said.

Cohen apologized to his family and U.S. citizens.

“I am truly sorry and I promise I will be better,” he said.

Cohen pleaded guilty as part of an agreement to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s team.

Mueller wrote in a sentencing memo that Cohen provided “relevant and useful.”

It’s not year clear what information Cohen has provided.

Manafort May No Longer Challenge Mueller’s Allegations That He Lied to Prosecutors

Paul Manafort’s mugshot

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

After insisting Paul Manafort did not lie to special counsel Robert Mueller’s team as part of a plea deal, attorneys for the former campaign chief for Donald Trump may no longer contest allegations that Manafort provided false information.

Manafort’s attorney Richard Westling met with Mueller’s team Tuesday before saying in federal court that “the certainty of the hearing is less clear,” Huffington Post and other media outlets reported.

Mueller rescinded the plea deal with Manafort in late November, saying he violated the plea deal by lying to prosecutors.

Manafort has until Jan. 7 to decide whether to contest the allegations that he lied. 

Manafort, who was found guilty in August of eight criminal charges lodged by Mueller, is set to be sentenced on March 5.

He faces more jail time for allegedly lying to prosecutors.

Michael Flynn Asks for No Prison for Cooperating with Mueller’s Team

Former National Security Adviser Michael T. Flynn

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

President Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn is asking a judge to spare him prison time for cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller.

Instead, Flynn is requesting to be sentenced to one year of probation, his attorneys wrote in a memo in advance of his Dec. 18 sentencing date.

“His cooperation was not grudging or delayed,” Flynn’s lawyers wrote, according to The New York Times.

Flynn’s lawyers also cited the Army general’s lengthy military service.

But his lawyers also suggested he was tricked into lying by the FBI, repeating a narrative often used by Trump.

Mueller: Flynn Provided ‘Substantial Assistance’ in Russia Probe, Recommending No Jail Time

Former National Security Adviser Michael T. Flynn

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Special counsel Robert Mueller recommended no jail time for Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, saying he provided “substantial assistance” to several ongoing investigations.

Flynn cooperated during 19 interviews with federal investigators, providing early insight into the Russia investigation and possibly helping encourage others to cooperate, a court filing states.

Flynn, who was pressured to abandoned his post as national security adviser for misleading administration officials, is among five Trump aides who have pleaded guilty in the special counsel investigation.

The sentencing memo provided the first description from prosecutors about the extent of Flynn’s cooperation.

But for now, it’s unclear what information Flynn provided because the memo is heavily redacted.

Flynn was among Trump’s early supporters who led “Lock her up!” chants targeting Hillary Clinton.

Here’s How Trump Responded to 2 Questions from Mueller

President Donald Trump

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

President Trump responded in writing to the special counsel team that he was not notified of a meeting at the Trump Tower between campaign officials and a Russian lawyer who claimed to have dirt on Hillary Clinton.

The president also denied that his former political adviser Roger Stone told him about Wikileaks’ plan to release hacked emails from the Democratic Party that were damaging to Clinton.

That’s according to CNN, which obtained two of the president’s written responses to Robert Mueller’s team investigating whether Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia.

Trump has refused an in-person interview with Mueller’s team and only agreed to answer questions about collision with Russia.

Manafort Reportedly Met Secretly with Wikileaks Founder Julian Assange

Julian Assange on Fox News

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Paul Manafort, the former campaign chairman for Donald Trump, met secretly with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

Sources told the Guardian that Manafort met Assange in 2013, 2015 and in the spring of 2016, which is when Manafort joined the Trump campaign.

Manafort denied the meetings took place.

“I have never met Julian Assange or anyone connected to him,” Manafort said in a statement. “I have never been contacted by anyone connected to WikiLeaks, either directly or indirectly. I have never reached out to Assange or WikiLeaks on any matter.”

Special counsel prosecutors are likely to be interested in the 2016 meeting because several months later Wikileaks dumped a trove of damaging information about Hillary Clinton.

What’s unclear is what the meetings involved.

Manafort, who is in solitary confinement at a prison in Virginia, could receive more time behind bars after Robert Mueller’s special counsel team said he repeatedly lied to the FBI, even after striking a deal to cooperate with prosecutors.

Manafort’s Attorney Leaked Information to Trump’s Legal Team

Ex-Trump campaign leader Paul Manafort.

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Paul Manafort’s attorney provided the president’s legal team with updates and details about interviews with federal prosecutors, even after the former Trump campaign boss pledged to cooperate with authorities.

Special prosecutors for Robert Mueller were enraged to discover the discussions were taking place, and some authorities are speculating the secret briefings were Manafort’s way of gaining a presidential pardon, the New York Times reports

Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani confirmed the discussions with the Times.

Manafort’s attorney, Kevin Downing, told Giuliani that Manafort was questioned in-depth about the Trump Tower meeting in which a Russian lawyer secretly gathered with Manafort, Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr., and his son-in-law Jared Kushner. Manafort also was asked whether the president was aware of the meeting.

“He wants Manafort to incriminate Trump,” Giuliani said.

On Wednesday morning, Trump tweeted that “at least 3 major players are intimating that the Angry Mueller Gang of Dems is viciously telling witnesses to lie about facts & they will get relief.”

“This is our Joseph McCarthy Era!”

As is usual with Trump’s Twitter tirades, Trump provided no names or any more detail to back up his claims.

Trump Unleashes Another Tweetstorm about Mueller’s probe, Doesn’t Substantiate Wild Claims

Special Counsel Robert Mueller, via FBI.

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Like clockwork, President Trump continued to his tirade Tuesday morning against the special counsel investigation and the media, calling Robert Mueller “a conflicted prosecutor gone rogue.”

But as is usual with Trump’s tweetstorms, the president provided no evidence to back up his hyperbolic claims that included calling the 19-month probe a “phony witch hunt.”

The Phony Witch Hunt continues, but Mueller and his gang of Angry Dems are only looking at one side, not the other,” Trump tweeted. “Wait until it comes out how horribly & viciously they are treating people, ruining lives for them refusing to lie.”

He continued, “The Fake News Media builds Bob Mueller up as a Saint, when in actuality he is the exact opposite. He is doing TREMENDOUS damage to our Criminal Justice System, where he is only looking at one side and not the other. Heroes will come of this, and it won’t be Mueller and histerrible Gang of Angry Democrats. Look at their past, and look where they come from. The now $30,000,000 Witch Hunt continues and they’ve got nothing but ruined lives.”

The tweet comes one day after yet another Trump associate, Paul Manafort, was accused of lying to the FBI.

Democrats are worried Trump is trying to derail the investigating after replacing Attorney General Jeff Sessions with a loyalist, Matthew Whitaker.