September 17, 2018 / 8:52 PM / in 2 months

Ex-Trump adviser Flynn could be sentenced as soon as Nov 28: filing

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump’s former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI, could be sentenced as soon as Nov. 28, according to a joint court filing by prosecutors from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office and defense lawyers on Monday.

FILE PHOTO: Former U.S. National Security Adviser Michael Flynn departs U.S. District Court, where he was expected to plead guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russia's ambassador to the United States, in Washington, U.S., December 1, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Prosecutors have repeatedly deferred Flynn’s sentencing date since he pleaded guilty in December 2017, even though Flynn’s lawyer has said his client was eager to get the sentencing date on the calendar and put the ordeal behind him.

The agreement now between both parties to set a sentencing date on Nov. 28, or the following seven business days, signals that Flynn’s ongoing cooperation with Mueller’s office is coming to an end.

“General Flynn is eager to proceed to sentencing,” his lawyer Robert Kelner told U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan during a hearing in July.

Flynn pleaded guilty to lying about his contacts with Russia, in exchange for cooperating with Mueller’s probe into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

During that hearing, Kelner agreed with the judge’s suggestion that a sentencing hearing could be held within 60 days of the conclusion of Flynn’s cooperation with Mueller, rather than the usual 90 days so that the case could be expedited.

Flynn was the first member of Trump’s administration to plead guilty to a crime uncovered by Mueller’s wide-ranging investigation into Russian attempts to influence the 2016 U.S. election and potential collusion by Trump aides.

Under a plea bargain deal, Flynn admitted in a Washington court that he lied when asked by FBI investigators about his conversations with Russia’s then-ambassador, Sergei Kislyak, just weeks before Trump took office.

Trump has denied knowing anything about contact with Russians and his campaign and has called Mueller’s probe a witch hunt.

Russia has denied U.S. allegations that it interfered in the campaign.

Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch; Editing by Lisa Shumaker

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