Roger Stone was convicted Friday on multiple counts on charges brought by special counsel Robert Mueller. The longtime associate flunky of American crime boss Donald Trump was convicted on all seven counts. He was charged with lying to Congress, obstruction of Congress, witness tampering and other crimes.
Stone is openly taking a fall for Trump in the hopes that he will be pardoned of all of his crimes that he committed on behalf of Donald J. Trump. This case has shed new light on Donald Trump’s anticipation of the release of stolen Democratic emails in 2016 by WikiLeaks.
The verdict marks a stunning conclusion to one of the highest-profile prosecutions to emerge from special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation — a case that began with one of Trump’s most vocal supporters arrested during a pre-dawn raid as the special counsel’s investigation wound down, and that since then has gradually revealed new information about the Trump campaign’s positive reception to foreign interference in the 2016 election.
Prosecutors asked the judge to take Stone into custody immediately. They alleged he violated his gag order and communicated with a member of the press last night. Judge Amy Berman Jackson declined, saying she” will release him on his current conditions pending the sentencing date.”
According to prosecutors, Stone failed to turn over documents to Congress in 2017, showing he had sought to reach WikiLeaks the previous year, and lied about five facts, obscuring his attempt to use intermediaries to get information that could help then-candidate Trump in the election against Hillary Clinton.
Stone’s trial at a federal courthouse in Washington revealed the extent to which the longtime Trump friend was directly in touch with Trump and other campaign officials about Wikileaks’ 2016 release of hacked Democratic emails.
Prosecutors argued that witness testimony, along with Stone’s texts, emails, and phone records, showed Stone’s interest in reaching WikiLeaks about the hacked documents it had, and speaking to the Trump campaign and even Trump himself about it. Prosecutors said Stone lied to Congress out of a desire to protect Trump.
“It would look really bad for his longtime associate Donald Trump” if the truth had come out,” Prosecutor Jonathan Kravis said in his closing argument on Wednesday.
Trump came to Stone’s defense on Friday after the verdict was released, calling it “a double standard like never seen before in the history of our country.”
In recent months, Trump has weighed pardoning Stone if he was convicted, multiple people familiar with his thinking say.
Several of Stone’s allies have lobbied Trump to do so, but there are also multiple people who have advised the President that doing so would be a terrible idea politically and have cautioned against it, people familiar with the situation have told CNN.
In his written answers to Mueller, Trump said he didn’t recall his conversations with Stone, nor discussions about WikiLeaks and the Democratic hack.
Prosecutors argued that Stone’s alleged failure to tell Congress about the attempts to reach WikiLeaks left the House Intelligence Committee with a blind spot in their investigation–causing the committee’s final report on Russian interference in the election to be inaccurate.
From Raw Story and CNN