President Donald Trump is poised to pardon convicted felon Michael Flynn, his former national security adviser who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in 2017 before attempting to withdraw the plea this year, according to multiple reports.
Unnamed sources told CNN that the President’s plans are subject to change, however.
During a court hearing in September on the Justice Department’s controversial move to dismiss Flynn’s criminal case, Flynn’s attorney Sidney Powell (who was recently thrown out of Trump’s legal team in their fight to overturn the election) admitted that she had spoken to Trump about the case but had cautioned against a pardon.
The President has repeatedly painted Flynn as a victim of an anti-Trump conspiracy by Obama-era and intelligence officials in his sustained attacks against the FBI and Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigations into the 2016 Trump campaign’s ties to Russia. Neither Trump nor his allies have provided evidence of their allegations.
A pardon for Flynn wouldn’t be the first time Trump used his presidential powers to shield one of his criminal associates. In July, the President commuted former adviser Roger Stone’s prison sentence after Stone was convicted of lying to Congress and obstructing the Russia probe.