Earlier today, as reported by the Inquisitr, longtime Republican operative and Trump associate Roger Stone was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) following a grand jury indictment.
Stone was indicted in the District of Columbia on seven counts: one count of obstruction, one count of witness tampering, and five counts of false statements.
According to special counsel Robert Mueller’s prosecutors, Stone told “senior Trump campaign officials” about emails in possession of WikiLeaks between June and July of 2016, allegedly prompting the Trump campaign to direct Stone to seek more damaging information about Donald Trump’s then-opponent Hillary Clinton.
“A senior Trump Campaign official was directed to contact Stone about any additional releases and what other damaging information Organization 1 had regarding the Clinton campaign,” the document states. “Organization 1” reportedly refers to WikiLeaks.
The White House is downplaying Roger Stone’s arrest. In an interview broadcast today, Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders argued that Stone’s indictment has “nothing to do” with President Trump, alleging that a double standard is being applied to the case and asking whether Hillary Clinton would receive the same treatment.
“This has nothing to do with [the] president, and certainly nothing to do with the White House. This is something that has to do solely with that individual, not something that affects us in this building,” Sanders said.
“Will the same standard apply to Hillary Clinton?” the press secretary asked.
President Donald Trump took to Twitter to describe Robert Mueller’s investigation as a “witch hunt” once again — he has often used the phrase to describe the special counsel’s probe into Russian election interference — and seemingly criticize the FBI for mistreating Roger Stone.
Greatest Witch Hunt in the History of our Country! NO COLLUSION! Border Coyotes, Drug Dealers and Human Traffickers are treated better. Who alerted CNN to be there?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 25, 2019
“Who alerted CNN to be there?” the president asked, in an obvious reference to the fact that CNN had caught Stone’s arrest on video.
“FBI, open the door, we have a warrant,” one of the agents can be heard shouting. Stone opened the door and went into police custody. The fact that CNN was there to film Stone’s arrest prompted many to conclude that the news channel had been tipped off about the event.
“FBI. Open the door.”
Watch exclusive CNN footage of the FBI arresting longtime Trump associate Roger Stone. Stone has been indicted by a grand jury on charges brought by special counsel Robert Mueller. https://t.co/5QHKDB2mfA pic.twitter.com/UeKo7CmXWo
— CNN (@CNN) January 25, 2019
CNN disputes the allegations. A producer for the news channel said Friday that the camera crew was in place at Roger Stone’s Fort Lauderdale home due to “reporter’s instinct,” as per the Washington Examiner.
— Newsweek (@Newsweek) January 25, 2019
It is nothing new for President Donald Trump to state that there has been no collusion, allege bias, criticize the media, and call Mueller’s investigation a “witch hunt” — he has done so on numerous occasions, often via Twitter, questioning the legitimacy of Robert Mueller’s probe and denying any wrongdoing.