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Flynn to decline US Senate subpoena in Russian Federation probe

Flynn to decline US Senate subpoena in Russian Federation probe

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr said Thursday that former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn's lawyers haven't indicated how they will respond to a subpoena regarding the panel's Russian Federation investigation.

Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., told reporters on Capitol Hill that the committee, which is investigating Russia's interference in the 2016 election, is evaluating its next steps.

The Intelligence Committee has been probing Russia's alleged meddling the 2016 election, including whether members of the Trump campaign had colluded with Russian officials to benefit their candidate.

"General Flynn's attorneys have not yet indicated their intentions regarding the Senate Intelligence Committee's subpoena", Burr said in a statement.

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In a letter to the Senate intelligence committee, Flynn's attorneys justified the decision by citing an "escalating public frenzy against him" and saying the Justice Department's recent appointment of a special counsel has created a legally risky environment for him to cooperate with the panel's investigation.

Providing those records to the committee would provide authorities with "a lot more information and the legal basis for questioning him about them", she said.

Pelosi also ridiculed Trump's complaint about a "witch hunt" following the naming of a special counsel to investigate possible Trump campaign ties to Russian Federation.

Reuters reported that Flynn and other Trump campaign staffers were in contact with Russian officials at least 18 times during the last several months of the presidential campaign. Flynn, through his lawyer, had earlier asked for immunity from "unfair prosecution" in exchange for agreeing to cooperate with the committee.

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Donald Trump has received a warm welcome from the Saudi king on his first foreign trip as US President. The official was not authorized to discuss the probe and requested anonymity.

According to the New York Times, Flynn told Trump's transition team weeks before the inauguration that he was under federal investigation for secretly working as a paid lobbyist for Turkey during the campaign.

The Justice Department would have to prosecute the case - something exceptionally unlikely to happen. The number is expected to grow as the investigation continues. The Intelligence Committee would have to vote whether to issue a citation for contempt, and if so, the full Senate would then vote on it.

But Senate Judiciary Committee leaders - who also wanted Comey to testify before their panel in the wake of his dismissal - criticized the former director's decision to appear only before the Intelligence Committee. Mark Warner, announced Friday that Comey will testify in an open setting before the committee.

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