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Shock Development: Mueller Alumnus Abruptly Leaves Stone Case Under Cloud

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On Tuesday February 11, 2020, Special Assistant United States Attorney Aaron S.J. Zelinsky filed a notice of withdrawal from the criminal case against Roger Stone. Zelinsky stayed on with the Department of Justice after the Mueller probe disbanded to continue prosecution against Roger Stone, one of Mueller’s targets.

Zelinsky originally joined the Mueller team from the District of Maryland where he once worked for then-U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein. This filing came within hours of the Department of Justicedisavowing a 9-year sentencing recommendation filed in the Roger Stone criminal case. Fox Newsreported that the Department of Justice issued a statement repudiating the Zelinsky recommendationstating, “The Department was shocked to see the sentencing recommendation in the filing in the Stone case last night. The sentencing recommendation was not what had been briefed to the Department.”

 

In the early hours of Tuesday, the president weighed in via Twitter, writing, “This is a horrible and very unfair situation. The real crimes were on the other side, as nothing happens to them. Cannot allow this miscarriage of justice!”

 

According to Twitter-sleuth Techno Fog, Zelinsky also resigned “effective immediately” as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia.:snip:

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DOJ to Reduce ‘Extreme and Excessive’ Sentencing Recommendation for Roger Stone; Multiple Attorneys on Case Resign

The Department of Justice is reportedly stepping in to reduce the sentencing recommendation for former Trump confidant and GOP operative Roger Stone after federal prosecutors announced an unusually stiff prison sentence for process crimes.

Stone last year was found guilty on seven counts of obstruction, witness tampering and making false statements to Congress on charges stemming from former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

In his defense, Stone’s lawyers argued that he did not have an actual inside connection with WikiLeaks and it was not proven beyond a reasonable doubt that he had lied to Congress.

 

Not surprisingly, most of the assistant U.S. attorneys and prosecutors on the case—Jonathan Kravis, Michael Marando, Aaron Zelinsky and Adam C. Jed—have impressive liberal credentials. From 2009 to 2010, Kravis served as Associate Counsel to then-President Obama. He is now deputy chief of the fraud and public corruption section in the U.S. attorney’s office for the District of Columbia, where Marando also works.

Zelinsky and Jed are both former members of Mueller’s team. Last year, former Trump campaign adviser Michael Caputo accused Zelinsky of trying to ensnare him in a process crime when he was interviewed by the special counsel team in May of 2018.:snip:

 
 

 

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