by Chuck Ross
Roger Stone is calling on a federal judge to dismiss charges against him stemming from special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe, while also demanding an unredacted copy of the final report.
Stone’s lawyers made the demands in a flurry of court motions filed on Friday, days ahead of the expected release of a redacted copy of Mueller’s report.
“Only by reviewing the full, unredacted Mueller Report can Roger Stone be assured of his rights to due process, to compulsory process, to know the exculpatory evidence, to determine whether or not he is being selectively prosecuted,” Stone’s lawyers said.
“The Special Counsel Report may be of political interest to many. It may be of commercial interest to others. It may be of public interest to some. But for Roger Stone, the Special Counsel’s Report is a matter of protecting his liberty.”
Stone, a longtime confidant of President Trump’s, was indicted on Jan. 24 on seven counts, all related to the House Intelligence Committee’s Russia probe. Stone is accused of making false statements about communications with associates and the Trump campaign regarding WikiLeaks.
He is also accused of obstructing the committee’s investigation and of witness tampering. Stone’s indictment alleges that he tried to dissuade a witness, Randy Credico, from appearing before the intelligence panel.
Mueller was unable to establish any conspiracy or collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian operatives. The Justice Department is expected to release his report early next week.
Stone’s lawyers argue that charges should be dismissed on the grounds that they involve a congressional proceeding and would require a formal congressional referral for the special counsel to prosecute. The attorneys assert that the intelligence committee did not formally refer Stone for prosecution.
Stone has claimed that Credico, a left-wing activist, was a source for him regarding WikiLeaks’ plans to release documents prior to the 2016 election. Credico has denied being a back channel to Stone, but Stone has released text messages that show that Credico provided insight into when WikiLeaks would release Clinton-related documents. Credico also told Stone that the documents would devastate the Clinton campaign.
In one filing on Friday, Stone’s attorneys cite Credico’s Sept. 7, 2018 testimony to the Mueller grand jury to make the case that Stone was selectively prosecuted.
Stone’s lawyers, who have been provided a transcript of Credico’s testimony, allege that Credico lied by denying having conversations with Stone about WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange before Sept. 10, 2016. The lawyers claim that text messages show Stone and Credico discussing Assange on Aug. 19, 2016.
Stone, 66, hopes to call Assange to testify at his trial, which is tentatively scheduled to start on Nov. 5. Stone believes that Assange will help his case by repeating his past claims that the pair have never met or communicated.
Assange was indicted in the U.S. on Thursday on a charge that he conspired with Chelsea Manning to hack the Pentagon’s classified computer networks. He was arrested and removed from the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he had lived under asylum since 2012.
– – –