Trump says he could meet Russian Federation investigation special counsel ‘under certain circumstances’

08 September, 2018, 19:57 | Author: Rachel Logan

The professor told Papadopoulos the Russians had "dirt" on Mr Trump's Democratic presidential rival Hillary Clinton in the form of "thousands of emails".

US District Judge Randolph Moss on Friday sentenced Papadopoulos to 14 days, noting that he "lied in an investigation that was important to national security". Mifsud's current whereabouts are unknown, and Papadopoulos has denied telling anyone else from the president's campaign about Mifsud's claims.

Moss, the federal judge, said he took into consideration Papadopoulos's "genuine remorse" in issuing the light sentence, which included a $9,500 fine, a year on parole and community service.

In addition, they said Mr. Papadopoulos did not provide "substantial assistance" and only came clean after he was confronted with his own e-mails, texts and other evidence.

Trump and his allies have repeatedly downplayed Papadopoulos' role on the campaign, with one of them describing him as a mere "coffee boy".

"The president of the United States, the commander in chief, had told the world that this was fake news and a witch hunt", Breen said.

The FBI met with Mifsud while he was visiting the United States in early 2017, but Papadopoulos' lies "undermined investigators' ability to challenge the professor or potentially detain or arrest him".

Prosecutors said Papadopoulos used his contacts with the professor, identified in court papers as Joseph Mifsud, to elevate his status within the campaign and lobby for a meeting between Trump and Russian officials, including President Vladimir Putin.

His lawyer Tom Breen said that at the time, Papadopoulos was naive and acted on what he told the court was a "misguided loyalty" to Trump, who had been inaugurated as president just one week before.

More news: Kavanaugh Hearing Interrupted by Protesters, Dems Call for DELAY — COURT CHAOS

That account conflicts with what Sessions, now attorney general, testified before Congress.

Even after his arrest and plea agreement past year, prosecutors say Papadopoulos continued to be hard with investigators, only providing information after being confronted with documents such as emails and text messages.

"As far as I remember, I absolutely did not share this information with anyone on the campaign", Papadopoulos told Tapper.

Court documents suggest Mueller's office had hoped to secure Papadopoulos' cooperation, but quickly concluded he could not be trusted when he began meeting with reporters.

Outside court on Friday, Papadopoulos' lawyer, Thomas Breen, said his client was a "fool" and had acted "stupidly" in lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. A spokeswoman for Sessions declined to comment after Papadopoulos's filing last week.

He has testified that senior campaign members encouraged him during 2016 to build ties with Russian Federation, including after he told them that Moscow possessed - and could be willing to share - dirt on Trump's election rival Hillary Clinton.

Jeff Sessions "appeared to also like the idea and stated that the campaign should look into it".

"I made mistakes and I will pay for my mistakes", he said, adding, "I don't want to give up my goal of staying in politics".

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