Author : Brooke Seipel
Posted: March 30th,2017
President Trump’s former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn has reportedly told the FBI that he is willing to testify about the Trump campaign’s potential ties to Russia, in exchange for immunity from prosecution, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Flynn resigned in February, after it was reported that he misled White House staff on his interactions with Russia and had discussed sanctions with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak ahead of President Trump’s inauguration.
The Journal reported, citing officials familiar with the matter, that the FBI and the House and Senate Intelligence committees that are investigating Russia’s attempts to interfere in the U.S. election have not taken Flynn’s lawyers up on the offer.
Flynn’s lawyer said in a statement that “General Flynn certainly has a story to tell, and he very much wants to tell it, should the circumstances permit.”
“Notwithstanding his life of national service, the media are awash with unfounded allegations, outrageous claims of treason, and vicious innuendo directed against him. He is now the target of unsubstantiated public demands by Members of Congress and other political critics that he be criminally investigated,” Flynn’s lawyer Robert Kelner said in a statement.
“No reasonable person, who has the benefit of advice from counsel, would submit to questioning in such a highly politicized, witch hunt environment without assurances against unfair prosecution,” he added.
Kelner said there have been discussions with the House and Senate Intelligence panels.
Flynn spoke with Kislyak multiple times during the transition, including on Dec. 29, the day then-President Obama retaliated against Moscow for its hacking of Democratic political groups and individuals, which intelligence agencies say was done to aid Trump’s campaign.
Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, whose ties to Russia have been under scrutiny, and son-in-law Jared Kushner earlier this week volunteered to be interviewed by the House Intelligence Committee. Former aides Roger Stone and Carter Page, who have also been in the spotlight in the Russian investigations, have also offered to talk with the committees — but none with any conditions of immunity.
FBI Director James Comey last week confirmed that the bureau is investigating Russian attempts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election — including any links or coordination between members of Trump’s campaign and Moscow.
Following his resignation, other revelations have been made surrounding Flynn, including that he was paid tens of thousands of dollars by multiple Russian companies prior to becoming a formal adviser on Trump’s campaign.
Flynn received $56,250 in payments for work done for two Russian firms and Kremlin-backed news outlet RT.
He also reportedly discussed ways to take a man wanted by the Turkish government out of the United States without going through the legal extradition process.
The conversation, which took place during the presidential race while Flynn was serving as an unpaid adviser to Trump, centered around Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen.
In September, criticizing Hillary Clinton over former aides being given immunity deals as part of an investigation into her private email server, Flynn said, “When you’re given immunity that means you’ve probably committed a crime.”
Intelligence agencies first announced beliefs of possible Russian election interference in October. Since then, the intelligence community has concluded interference from Moscow did occur, and multiple investigations have been launched into the Trump campaign’s possible ties to Russia and communications amid the Russian hacks.