13:17 GMT31 October 2020
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    Blagojevich explained his first-hand knowledge of the way the FBI operated in his case gave him unique insight into the way Flynn was treated in the early days of the Russia investigation. Blagojevich was convicted in 2011 on corruption charges and served eight years of his 14-year sentence, commuted by President Donald Trump February.

    Former Illinois Democratic Governor Rod Blagojevich has claimed he knew the playbook the Federal Bureau of Investigation was running against now-exonerated former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn because they used it on him first.

    “In my long and unhappy experience, I saw how they use trickery and deceit as legal tools. They lie and they cheat; they manipulate and minimize evidence; they hide and cover up exculpatory evidence – evidence that proves innocence. And to this day, in my case, they are still covering up tape recordings they made because those tapes show innocence,” Blagojevich exclusively told The Daily Caller.

    The former governor also said the prosecution against him only used about one percent of the phone conversations recorded by investigators and the rest have been sealed ever since, which prevented him mounting an effective defense at the time, and appealing his sentence ever since.

    ​Blagojevich said this was eerily similar to the way the documents in Flynn’s case remained suppressed until last week, files which seemingly exposed a concerted effort by the FBI to get Flynn to lie, thus giving them leverage over him they could use to precipitate his firing, or get through him to President Donald Trump.

    “What they succeeded in doing at the Triple-A level to a Democratic Governor, they tried to do at the Major League level to a Republican President. This cannot be a Democratic or Republican issue. It is far too important. What these corrupt prosecutors and FBI agents are doing threatens the fundamental rights of the American people to choose their own leaders through free elections,” he concluded.

    The US Justice Department announced 7th May it was dropping its case against Flynn.

    ​The decision was made "after a considered review of all the facts and circumstances of this case, including newly discovered and disclosed information", the documents read. It was decided that an interview Flynn had with the FBI was "conducted without any legitimate investigative basis". 

    "The Government is not persuaded that the 24 January, 2017, interview was conducted with a legitimate investigative basis and therefore does not believe Mr. Flynn’s statements were material even if untrue. Moreover, we not believe that the Government can prove either the relevant false statements or their materiality beyond a reasonable doubt", the motion reads.

    Hours before the motion release, Flynn's prosecutor Brandon Van Grack stepped down from the case. 

    Flynn had earlier entered the guilty plea in 2017 for allegedly making false statements over his contacts with Russia, which he then sought to withdraw. He was accused of "possible coordination with the Russian officials to interfere with 2016 presidential election". Russia repeatedly denied any interference with the election campaign.

    Before his resignation in February 2017 over reports of his alleged contacts with the Russian ambassador to the US, Sergey Kislyak, amid the 2016 presidential election, Flynn was national security adviser to Donald Trump. Under his guilty plea, he admitted to talking to the envoy on December 2016 before Trump's inauguration, making an attempt to prevent Russia from responding to sanctions imposed upon them.

    Since that time, Flynn has continually backed off on his guilt, claiming he was tricked by the FBI into lying to them.




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