In an interview with MSNBC’s Ari Melber broadcast on Friday, former federal prosecutor Paul Butler discussed the most recent developments in the Russia probe, Raw Story reports.
Butler touched on a wide range of topics pertaining to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian election interference and possible coordination between official Moscow and the Trump campaign. Notably, Butler discussed the indictment of longtime Republican operative Roger Stone.
As detailed by a previous Inquisitr report, Stone — who worked for Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign — was indicted last week in the District of Columbia on seven counts: one count of witness tampering, five counts of false statements, and one count of obstruction. The Republican pleaded not guilty, arguing in a recent interview that Mueller’s investigation is an elaborate plot meant to take Donald Trump down so that Nancy Pelosi — or possibly Hillary Clinton — can take his place.
Some legal experts have argued that the Stone indictment does not prove collusion, given that President Trump’s confidant has only been accused of committing procedural crimes, and not of conspiring with Russia. Constitutional lawyer and frequent Trump defender Alan Dershowitz, for instance, argued that Mueller is simply exerting pressure on Stone, effectively forcing him to cooperate with the authorities.
— SFGate (@SFGate) January 30, 2019
Former federal prosecutor Paul Butler is of a similar opinion. But according to Butler, Roger Stone will “flip” and start cooperating with Mueller because he doesn’t have a good defense, and because he is looking at 10 years in prison. While Stone has indicated that he will not go without a fight, in Butler’s opinion, he does not stand a chance.
“But if he’s looking at 10 years if he’s convicted, at least, which means he will be 77. We’ll see how much of a firebrand he is then. That’s why I think he’s probably going to make a deal,” he said.
“He doesn’t have a defense. The defense to false statements is ‘I told the truth.’ Robert Mueller has a whole cadre of text messages and e-mails that suggest that he did not tell the truth.”
Butler also discussed the prospect of Donald Trump being indicted by Robert Mueller and his team. According to the former federal prosecutor, given that the Justice Department’s official stance is that no sitting president can be indicted, the chances of Trump being removed from office are low.
Aware of the fact that he cannot be indicted, President Donald Trump is making “incoherent” denials, according to Paul Butler, because he has likely “done something wrong” and does not want Mueller’s investigation to proceed.
“This is a way of really embracing his formal status as president as a defense,” the former federal prosecutor concluded for MSNBC.