Short jail sentence recommended for George Papadopoulos

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Special counsel Robert Mueller's team is recommending a sentence of up to six months in jail for George Papadopoulos, the former Trump campaign aide who pleaded guilty to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Papadopoulos - a Chicago-based global energy lawyer - is one of three ex-Trump campaign officials who have admitted lying to investigators, including former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and businessman Richard Gates, who served as deputy campaign chairman.

The Mueller court documents said Mr Papadopoulos caused irreparable damage to the Russian Federation investigation because he lied repeatedly to agents during a January 2017 interview.

In a court filing on Friday, prosecutors say Papadopoulos did not provide "substantial assistance" to the Russian Federation investigation.

Papadopoulos is due to be sentenced on September 7.

Mueller wrote in the filing that Papadopoulos chose to lie to federal investigators during a voluntary interview and that he "was expressly warned that it is a crime to lie to federal investigators".

The investigation into Papadopoulos was formally opened after Australian officials alerted the FBI to professor Joseph Mifsud's unusual interaction with him in London in July 2016.

Now, Mueller has recommended that Papadopoulos see some time in prison.

The professor told Papadopoulos the Russians had "dirt" on Democrat Hillary Clinton in the form of "thousands of emails" that they had procured, according to the court documents. But it doesn't specifically relate any details of an interview with the professor as it recounts what prosecutors say was a missed opportunity caused by Papadopoulos.

Papadopoulos, who had served as a volunteer to the Trump team, traveled as an emissary from the campaign to foreign leaders in the Middle East and the Mediterranean.

"Much of the information provided by the defendant came only after the government confronted him with his own emails, text messages, internet search history, and other information it had obtained via search warrants and subpoenas well after the defendant's FBI interview as the government continued its investigation", prosecutors said in the filing. It has always been a mystery whether Papadopoulos told anyone inside the Trump campaign about the Russian dirt, and the document filed Friday does not answer the question.

Papadopoulos' lawyer Thomas Breen said Friday night that he was unable to comment at this time and would respond through the court record in their own pre-sentencing memo, which must be filed by August 31.

The sentence recommendation comes as Simona Mangiante Papadopoulos, the wife of the one-time foreign policy adviser, has mounted the latest in a series of publicity campaigns - this one suggesting her husband has misgivings about his plea agreement. The Australians passed the information to the United States and, in July 2016, the FBI opened its investigation into links between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation. He received 30 days in prison.

Mueller's office has not yet filed a sentencing memo in the case of Trump's former national security adviser, Michael Flynn.



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