President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn, a retired army Lt. General, is expected to plead guilty Friday morning to lying to the FBI about his post-election discussions with Russia’s ambassador to the United States.
A plea hearing for Flynn, the first Trump administration official charged in the ongoing Russia probe, has been scheduled for 10:30 a.m. in Washington, D.C. federal court, Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office said.
Flynn is expected to plead guilty to a criminal information charging him with knowingly making materially false, fictitious and fraudulent statements to FBI agents.
Specifically, Flynn is accused of falsely claiming that he had not asked Russia’s ambassador to the United States last Dec. 29 “to refrain from escalating the situation in response to sanctions that the United States had imposed against Russia that same day.”
Flynn also allegedly lied by telling the FBI “he did not recall the Russian Ambassador subsequently telling him that Russia had chosen to moderate its response to those sanctions as a result of his request,” the information says.
The expected guilty plea comes a week after news broke that Flynn’s lawyers had informed Trump’s legal team that they could no longer share information about Mueller’s probe.
That information shutdown from the Flynn team was taken as a sign that he was cooperating with Mueller’s expansive investigation.
Criminal informations are typically filed by prosecutors when they have reached an agreement with an investigation target to plead guilty, and possibly to cooperate against other targets.
The hearing will be before U.S. District Judge Rudolph Contreras at the D.C. federal courthouse on 3rd and Constitution.
Representatives for Flynn did not immediately respond to a request for comment from NBC. A White House spokesman referred all questions about Flynn to Trump’s outside legal counsel, Ty Cobb.
Here’s the special counsel’s filing with the court: