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Published: Thu, December 07, 2017
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Trump aid Michael Flynn planned to 'rip up' Russian Federation sanctions, says whistleblower

Trump aid Michael Flynn planned to 'rip up' Russian Federation sanctions, says whistleblower

A leading House Democrat revealed Wednesday he was approached by a whistleblower who said a businessman received a text from Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn on January 20, 2017 at 12:11 pm - as the newly sworn President Donald Trump was giving his inaugural address - indicating that a lucrative nuclear energy plan they had been developing with Russian partners was "Good to go".

"The account is the strongest evidence to date that the Trump administration wanted to end the sanctions immediately, and suggests that Mr. Flynn had a possible economic incentive for the United States to forge a closer relationship with Russian Federation".

The New York Times was first to report the letter on Wednesday, claiming it represents "the strongest evidence to date that the Trump administration wanted to end the sanctions immediately, and suggests that Mr. Flynn had a possible economic incentive for the United States to forge a closer relationship with Russian Federation".

Representative Elijah Cummings, the senior Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, said a whistleblower had contacted his office with evidence that Flynn was pushing to remove sanctions on Russian Federation in order to spur the ambitious nuclear plan ahead. He added, "This is going to make a lot of people very wealthy".

Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to federal investigators about calls he had with the Russian ambassador about sanctions and the United Nations vote at the request of Trump campaign officials.

The criminal case against Flynn in federal court barely touched on his work in private business, though it did describe his attempts during the presidential transition to mediate Russia's response to sanctions from the Obama administration and to influence foreign nations' votes on a UN Security Council measure related to Israeli settlements.

The Newsweek account prompted Cummings to launch an investigation of the arrangement.

Flynn's attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

As Trump delivered his inaugural address, says the unnamed whistleblower, Flynn directed Alex Copson, managing director of ACU Strategic Partners, to inform their business partners "to put things in place".

The allegations posed new troubles for Flynn, who left the White House last February after barely three weeks and pleaded guilty last week to lying to FBI investigators in the Russian Federation election meddling probe.

Cummings said the whistleblower, whom he did not identify in the letter, "fears retaliation", but would speak with Gowdy if he agrees to protect the whistleblower's identity.

Copson showed the witness the text on his phone. "I have spoken to this whistleblower, and I find this person to be authentic, credible, and reliable", Cummings wrote.

The whistleblower's account is included in a letter from Cummings to Republican chairman Trey Gowdy.

It also raised fresh questions on what Trump knew about Flynn's business plans when he appointed the retired three- star general to serve as his national security advisor. The whistleblower came to Cummings in June, he writes in the letter, but the congressman kept quiet about the claims at the request of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

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