Flynn Flipped So High Mueller Tells Judge Don’t Lock Him Up

Former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort arrives for a hearing at the E. Barrett Prettyman US Courthouse in Washington DC

Last year, former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, who was under investigation for his contacts with the Russian ambassador before the inauguration, told friends he had received a message from the president urging him to "stay strong".

The deadline for Mueller's office to file a memo recommending sentencing for Flynn is Tuesday.

Thirty-three people and three companies have been charged in the probe, including Cohen, Trump's former lawyer who last week pleaded guilty to lying to Congress when he insisted that Trump was pursuing plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow in 2016. He did all this without first obtaining a traditional, ironclad deal under which the government would commit to seeking leniency on Cohen's behalf when he is sentenced on December 12.

For the Russia investigation, the filing said Flynn provided "content and context" of interactions that the Trump transition team had with Russian officials regarding sanctions that the Obama administration sought to impose at the end of 2016, as well as a vote on a United Nations Security Council resolution about Israel.

Friends and relatives have said Flynn, who at 2016 campaign rallies led chants of "Lock her up!" about Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, is eager to face the judge and accept his fate following his dramatic guilty plea nearly exactly one year ago.

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Flynn, who held the White House job for only 24 days, pleaded guilty in December 2017 to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about his contacts with Russian Federation.

He has instead spent considerable time with his family and worked to position himself for a post-conviction career. According to later congressional testimony, acting interim attorney general Sally Yates warned the administration that Flynn's contacts with Russian Federation made him susceptible to blackmail, while former FBI Director James Comey testified that Trump pressured him to refrain from investigating Flynn. Flynn was sacked from the White House on February 13, 2017, after he misled Trump administration officials, including Vice President Pence, on his communications.

Department of Justice veterans told INSIDER that they had never heard of a cooperator maintaining contact with the potential target of an investigation after striking a deal with prosecutors and that such communications could tank a cooperation agreement. The sentencing is scheduled on December 12.

Flynn's crime of lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation carries a statutory maximum sentence of five years in prison.

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