The furloughed FBI agents who conducted a pre-dawn raid on Roger Stone’s home in Ft. Lauderdale reportedly volunteered for the assignment, and likely paid out of their own pockets to get there, reports suggest.
Agents arrested Stone before sunrise on Friday on a slew of charges related to the 2016 presidential campaign, making him the sixth top member of Donald Trump’s team to be nabbed through the Russia probe. Cameras were rolling as agents knocked on Stone’s door, guns drawn, and ordered him to come out. As Fox 5 reported, Stone’s indictment claimed that multiple people within Trump’s campaign knew that Stone was working with WikiLeaks to disseminate information stolen from Democrats, and that an unnamed “senior Trump Campaign official” ordered him to make contact.
“After the July 22, 2016, release of stolen (Democratic National Committee) emails by Organization 1, 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. STONE thereafter told the Trump Campaign about potential future releases of damaging material by Organization 1,” prosecutors wrote.
The indictment documents appeared to reveal the closest connection to higher-level members of the campaign, though it was unclear if Donald Trump himself was the person referenced in the court documents.
Reports noted that the FBI agents who arrested Roger Stone had volunteered for the assignment, as the agency has been hit by the partial government shutdown and its agents are working on deferred pay schedules. The shutdown has stretched into its sixth week as Donald Trump continues to demand more than $5 billion in funding for a border wall.
“furloughed FBI agents volunteered to arrest roger stone” is the funniest sentence in the english language— aída chávez (@aidachavez) January 25, 2019
Others noted that, because of the partial government shutdown, the agents in question likely had to pay out of their own pockets for the expenditures normally covered by the FBI — like the vehicles used to drive to his Florida home for the raid. Other reports suggested that agents in New York were prepared to conduct a raid on his residence in Manhattan, but Stone was in Florida at the time.
The arrest — and the actions of the unpaid FBI agents — drew praise from many of Donald Trump’s critics, who noted that even the shutdown could not stop the progress of Robert Mueller’s investigation.
Actually, they bore the cost of gas to get to work with out pay, so technically, the FBI agents paid to arrest Roger Stone.— Grant Stern (@grantstern) January 25, 2019
Indictment Friday! Roger Stone has been indicted and arrested in the Mueller probe for seeking stolen emails from WikiLeaks that could damage Trump's opponents at the direction of "a senior Trump Campaign official."— Amy Siskind ????️???? (@Amy_Siskind) January 25, 2019
Now do Donald Jr! https://t.co/RNWnzrk2bU
Roger Stone appeared in court later in the morning on Friday, before posting $250,000 bail and being released. He has maintained his innocence, and Donald Trump lashed out against the arrest on Twitter.