Mike Flynn under Special Counsel Investigation for Cleric Deal
12 November, 2017, 02:13 | Author: Chad Mckenzie
Investigators are probing whether former White House national security advisor Michael Flynn discussed expelling a Turkish dissident back to his country in exchange for millions of dollars, United States media reported Friday.
The December meeting about Gulen was also reported Friday by NBC, which cited people familiar with the probe.
Flynn, who is President Trump's former national security adviser, and his son Michael Flynn Jr. were allegedly were involved in a plan to deliver Fethullah Gulen to the Turkish government, which views Gulen as a political enemy and has pressed the USA for his extradition, The Journal reported.
The meeting allegedly discussed a secret payout of up to $15 million dollars if, once in office, Flynn would engineer the deportation to Turkey of Fethullah Gulen, a political rival to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as well as help free Erdogan-linked Iranian-Turkish businessman Reza Zarrab from prison.
Today's Wall Street Journalreport refers to another meeting, held three months later, in which the same topic was discussed: Flynn would "forcibly remove" Gulen, send him to Turkey, and receive millions of dollars for his efforts. Flynn's lawyers fully denied the Journal story and called the claims as "outrageous".
The Alliance for Shared Values, a group representing Gülen supporters in the US, said: "The US justice system should be commended for not giving in to the Turkish government's campaign against Mr Gülen, no matter how nefarious a plan the Erdogan regime could concoct nor how much money it could offer people who might entertain such plans".
The discussions allegedly included how to transport Gulen on a private jet to Turkey.
"Out of respect for the process of the various investigations regarding the 2016 campaign, we have intentionally avoided responding to every rumor or allegations raised in the media", the statement from Flynn's attorneys read.
Flynn is a central figure in Mueller's investigation because of conversations he had with then-Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak past year and because he waited until March to retroactively register with the Justice Department as a foreign agent for the work he did for a Turkish businessman.
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