The first member of Donald Trump’s “inner circle” to be charged in the Russian interference investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller, has been sentenced. George Papadopoulos, who served as Trump’s foreign policy adviser, was sentenced to 14-days in jail to be followed by one year of supervised release. Papadopoulos was also hit with a $9500 fine. The special counsel originally called for a sentence of between 0-6 months after Papadopoulos’ cooperation with the investigation. Papadopoulos pleaded with the sentencing judge before his sentence was handed down.
“I made a terrible mistake. I hope to have a second chance to redeem myself.” Papadopoulos told the judge before being sentenced.
NBC News(@NBCNews) reports, prosecutors said Papadopoulos was solicited by a professor with ties to Russian Intelligence named Joseph Mifsud. Mifsud reportedly told Papadopoulos that the Russians possessed incriminating information about Hilary Clinton in the form of “thousands of emails”. This was before it was public knowledge that Russia had stolen Democratic emails. Papadopoulos lied to the FBI about the timing of his interactions with the professor. He told the FBI it happened before he began working for Trump, when it had actually happened well afterward.
Prosecutors say Misfud arranged a meeting between Papadopoulos and a woman who was falsely introduced to Papadopoulos as Vladimir Putin’s niece.
Pictured: Joseph Misfud
After a night of heavy drinking, Papadopoulos bragged to an Australian diplomat about the stolen emails, Russians, and how the fix was in for Trump to win, as the two drank together at an upscale bar in London in 2016. The Australian Diplomat was so alarmed by Papadopoulos’ claims that he reported the conversation to his American counterparts. The Australian Diplomats’ concern came from evidence that they had seen Russia do the exact same thing in elections in multiple other countries around the world. That was the beginning of the counterintelligence investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 United States presidential election….and ultimately, Donald Trump and his camp’s role in the whole thing.
Trump, who has called the entire investigation a “hoax” and a “witch-hunt”, chimed in via Twitter after Papadopoulos’s sentencing.
You wouldn’t be wrong if you called yesterday Tragic Tuesday for Donald Trump, his supporters, and the entire GOP. At practically the same time long term Trump lawyer/”fixer”, Michael Cohen was pleading guilty to various charges include illegal campaign finance violations, in a federal courthouse in New York, and also implicating Trump himself in some of those crimes, Trump former Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort was learning his fate in Virginia as he awaited the verdict in his trial on multiple federal charges including tax fraud.
Guilty was the verdict on 8 out of the 18 crimes Manafort was charged with. CNN (@cnn) reported, Judge T.S. Ellis declared a mistrial on the 10 crimes the jury could not reach a unanimous verdict on. The FEDS still hold all of the cards in the mistrial charges as they can decide to re-try Manafort on those charges if they wish to.
Manafort was found guilty of five (5) tax fraud charges, two (2) counts of bank fraud, and one charge of hiding foreign bank accounts. Manafort faces a maximun 80 years behind bars for the 8 counts he was convicted on. Manafort may have some relief heading his way in the form of a presidential pardon, which Trump kind of hinted at early on Wednesday morning.
A Manafort pardon by Trump will be Republicans worst nightmare. Manafort was convicted by a jury of his peers. Not by angry Democrats or Republicans. He was convicted by law abiding, tax paying citizens of this Country. Attacking the verdict is not an attack on law enforcement or the FBI. An attack on this verdict will be an attack on America and its citizens who found Manafort guilty after a fair and legal trial. Republicans manage to look the other way when Trump does most things, but this one won’t be so easy to ignore. This will be an attack on the American democracy itself….. In the famous words of Donald Trump, “we’ll have to wait and see what happens.”
Former Trump personal attorney, Michael Cohen is reportedly in the process of copping a plea with the FEDS on Tuesday afternoon.
ABC News (@ABCNews) reported, the alleged plea deal involves crimes that Michael Cohen were personally involved in. ABC reported that the plea deal does include some jail time.
Michael Cohen had reportedly been under federal investigation for months, but no charges had been filed. At the moment, any comment about what Cohen will be charged with is strictly “guess-work”, as there has been no official word of charges as of yet. There is a court proceeding scheduled for 4pm Tuesday afternoon, in front of a federal judge. (About two hours from the time this is written). Legal analyst predict prosecutors will announce charges against Cohen at that time, or announce the plea deal. **Will update this post after the 4pm court appearance**
Michael Cohen plead guilty to 8 counts altogether. Michael Cohen also said in court that he made illegal campaign contributions “in coordination and at the direction of a candidate for federal office.” Michael Cohen’s sentencing date has been set for December 12th.
NEW YORK, NY
After being arrested on Wednesday and charged with insider trading, Chris Collins defiantly gave a speech later that evening and proclaimed his innocence. Collins said the charges would not deter him from running for re-election for his congressional seat. Saturday morning, word spread that the Republican congressman from New York had changed his tune.
Collins released a statement regarding the suspension of his re-election bid that he posted to his Twitter page.
In true 2018 Republican fashion, Collins made sure to blame the Democrats for every problem in the world and his own transgressions before going on to speak about suspending his re-election campaign, and saying that he would serve out the rest of his current term. Collins also said he looks forward to fighting the “meritless” charges and clearing his good name of any wrongdoing.
Collins said what a person in his situation is supposed to say, as he attempts to exude confidence, but make no mistake about it….CHRIS COLLINS IS IN DEEP SH*T! And he knows it too.
Collins, his son Cameron, and the father of Cameron’s fiance, Stephen Zarsky, were all charged with wire fraud, conspiracy to commit securites fraud, and multiple counts of securities fraud. USA Today (@USAToday) reports, the charges stem from Collins’ association with a biotech company named Innate Immunotherapeutics, which Collins is heavily invested in. Collins has been reported to have been using his clout to attempt to get everyone he encounters to invest in the company. But that’s not where Collins’ legal troubles come from. Collins received inside information about a failed clinical test by the company. Because of his position in the company, Collins received this type of info before the general public. A negative clinical trial of the company’s flagship drug was certain to cause the value of the stock to dip. It’s hard to predict how substantial the drop in the stock price would have been. Collins didn’t wait to find out. He took the inside info and passed it along to his son and others, so they could sell their shares before the rest of the public investors in order to avoid huge losses. This is illegal. This is the very definition of insider trading. Collins and other members of his circle managed to sell 1.78 million shares of the stock before news of the failed trials were made public. The others were mostly family of Collins’ and his son’s fiancee. The Collins crime family avoided $768,600 worth of losses from the swing-move pulled by the congressman. To make matters worse, Chris Collins has also been charged with lying to the FBI about the whole thing.
The criminal case against Collins, his son, and Zarsky has multiple “unnamed co-defendants involved. There’s a possibility those unnamed co-conspirators could be charged at a later date. The unnamed defendants are likely the family members, which leaves open the nasty consideration of family taking the stand and testifying against one another in the hopes of leniency. There is also the possibility that some top level names in the company may be vulnerable to charges too. This is probably going to get very ugly before everything is said and done.