US President Donald Trump says he is “not worried” about what his former national security adviser and close confidant, Michael Flynn, would tell special counsel Robert Mueller about Trump’s team’s alleged collusion with Russia.
Trump told reporters on Saturday that there was “absolutely no collusion” between his presidential campaign last year and the Russian government.
“What has been shown is no collusion, no collusion,” Trump said as he was leaving the White House to New York for a fundraiser. “There’s been absolutely no collusion, so we’re very happy.”
This was Trump’s first public reaction to Flynn’s guilty plea in connection with the investigation.
Flynn, who pleaded guilty on Friday to lying to the FBI about his conversations with Russian ambassador, has promised as a plea bargain to work with prosecutors in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
The agreement demands Flynn to cooperate with federal, state or even local investigators in any way Mueller’s office might need, according to a document filed in court on Friday.
The document said that Flynn also could be required to share details of his past dealings with the Trump transition and administration.
This is the first time Muller is reaching to a senior member of Trump’s administration for the probe that according to experts, has brought investigators closer to the president and his inner circle.
The FBI said in a statement that Flynn communicated with then-Russian ambassador to the Washington, Sergey Kislyak, after being asked by a senior Trump transition official to find out how foreign governments stood on a coming UN Security Council resolution about Israel.
The prosecutors did not name any transition officials. Sources familiar with the matter, however, told CNN that senior official referred to, in the statement is Trump’ advisor and son-in-law, Jared Kushner.
The White House said in a statement on Friday that “nothing about the guilty plea or the charge implicates anyone other than Mr. Flynn.”
According to federal sentencing guidelines, Flynn faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison. But Judge Rudolph Contreras said on Friday that Flynn could be sentenced to more than five years in prison.
Flynn said in a statement on Friday that he acknowledged that his actions “were wrong, and, through my faith in God, I am working to set things right.”
“My guilty plea and agreement to cooperate with the Special Counsel’s Office reflect a decision I made in the best interests of my family and of our country. I accept full responsibility for my actions,” he said.
Flynn’s decision to cooperate with Mueller’s team marked a major escalation in the investigation and raised speculations that he has something very valuable to offer to Muller in exchange.
According to Jack Sharman, a former special counsel to Congress, “One doesn’t plead guilty unless you hope to get something out of it.”
On Friday morning, ABC News aired a shocking report, saying that Trump, as a presidential candidate, had asked Flynn to make contact with Russians.
The report that was based on one anonymous source rattled Wall Street and caused a sharp slide in the stock market within minutes.
ABC news, however, provided a “clarification” several hours later, saying that Flynn confidant was “now clarifying that saying, according to Flynn, candidate Trump asked him during the campaign to find ways to repair relations with Russia and other world hot spots.”
“And then after the election, the president-elect asked him to contact Russia on issues including working together to fight ISIS [Daesh],” the report said.
source: press tv