Roger Stone, Trump’s longtime associate has been found guilty on Friday of lying to Congress and other charges in a case that has shed new light on President Donald Trump’s expectancy of the release of stolen Democratic emails in 2016 according to WikiLeaks.
Roger Stone, an active politician, was found guilty of all seven counts brought by the Justice Department, which is also a victory for special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. Trump’s associate was found guilty on five counts of lying to Congress, one of witness tampering, and one of obstructing a Congressional committee proceeding.
This ruling marks a spectacular end to one of the highest-profile prosecutions to emerge from special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. The judge was asked by prosecutors to take Stone into custody immediately and effectively. They alleged that 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.”
Stone failed to turn over documents to Congress in 2017 according to prosecutor which indicates that, he had attempted 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 was trialed at a federal courthouse in Washington shows 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, shows that Stone had shown interest in reaching WikiLeaks about the hacked documents it had, and speaking to the Trump campaign and Trump himself about it. Prosecutors said Stone lied to Congress in an effort 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.
However, Stone’s defense team refuted, insisting that Stone did not have a motive to protect Trump when he testified to the House in 2017 since Trump had already won the election.
On Friday, Trump jumped in to defend Stone after the verdict was released. He called it “a double standard like never seen before in the history of our Country.” Throughout the trial, prosecutors unveiled multiple phone calls made between Trump and Stone, including a July 2016 conversation in which Gates testified that Trump and Stone spoke about the planned release of hacked Democratic emails.Trump said in his written answers to Mueller that, he doesn’t remember his conversations with Stone, nor discussions about WikiLeaks and the Democratic hack. It as argued that because Stone allegedly fail to tell Congress about his attempts to reach WikiLeaks, it made it impossible for the House Intelligence Committee’s final report on Russian interference in the election to be inaccurate.