Michael Flynn pleads guilty to lying to Federal Bureau of Investigation

Michael Flynn pleads guilty to lying to Federal Bureau of Investigation

US District Court Judge Rudolph Contreras said during Flynn's plea hearing that the government will decide how effectively Flynn is co-operating. Court documents filed by the special counsel said that Flynn "willfully and knowingly" made "materially false, fictitious, and fraudulent statements and representations".

President Donald Trump's former top advisor Michael Flynn pleaded guilty Friday to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation over his contacts with Russian Federation, in a dramatic escalation of the probe into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow.

In a statement, Flynn said he acknowledged that his actions "were wrong, and, through my faith in God, I am working to set things right. I accept full responsibility for my actions".

Flynn's plea, Warner said, "comes on the heels of a new report about the President's efforts to silence the independent, bipartisan Senate investigation into ties between Trump associates and Russian Federation".

Flynn will say that Trump "directed him to make contact with the Russians", flatly contradicting Trump's claim that he had nothing to do with Russia before or after his surprise election.

Lefcourt, a past president of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, said it signals that Mueller believes information from Flynn will be used to successfully prosecute other Trump associates. He also receives a speaking fee from a Russian government-run television network that US officials consider a propaganda outlet.

Early on in is administration, Trump had taken a particular interest in the status of the Flynn investigation.

Flynn also agreed to cooperate with Mueller's probe, which focuses on Russian meddling in the 2016 election and possible coordination between Russia and Trump's team in the campaign that sent the Republican businessman to the White House.

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In the second statement Flynn made on December 22, 2016, Flynn denied asking a Russian Ambassador to delay or defeat a United Nations Security Council resolution.

Ty Cobb also pointed out that Flynn worked in the White House for only 25 days and was a "former Obama administration official".

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

The Obama administration, in a rare step that shocked its Middle East ally, planned to abstain on the motion rather than veto it as had been done in the past.

"The false statements involved mirror the false statements to White House officials which resulted in his resignation in February of this year", he continued.

During the Republican National Convention in July 2016, when Trump was officially nominated as the GOP's candidate, Flynn led the entire convention in a repeated chant of "Lock her up!" Trump has reportedly rued the day that Flynn forced himself out by misrepresenting his contacts with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak - contacts which are at the heart of his guilty plea - and even sought leniency for Flynn from then-FBI Director James Comey. When asked how he pleaded, Flynn only said, "Guilty, your honor".

Donald Trump and Michael Flynn speak at a campaign rally in Colorado on October 18, 2016.

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Mueller's charging documents state bluntly that Flynn interfered with the FBI's inquiry into Trump-Russia collusion.

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