10:53 GMT27 February 2021
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    The Inspector General of the US Defense Department told the House Oversight Committee it had started an investigation into former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, according to a letter released by the committee's ranking member Elijah Cummings on Thursday.

    "This office has initiated an investigation to determine whether Lieutenant General (LTG) Flynn, US Army (Retired) failed to obtain required approval prior to receiving any emolument from a foreign government," the letter dated April 11 stated.

    The House committee sent a letter to multiple agencies, as well as the White House on March 22, requesting documents about Flynn, including his work with the Trump transition team, his work as national security adviser, and his termination.

    In a press conference on Wednesday, Cummings, and the committee's chairman Jason Chaffetz noted they had not received a single piece of paper about Flynn from the White House.

    On Tuesday, Flynn’s attorney said he briefed the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) prior to the trip to Moscow and answered questions before and after the trip.

    "DIA did not locate any records referring or relating to LTG Flynn’s receipt of money from a foreign source," the letter released by the Oversight Committee stated. "DIA did not locate any records of LTG Flynn seeking permission or approval for the receipt of money from a foreign source."

    Committee Ranking Member Elijah Cummings released the document and explained that, regardless of whether Flynn notified the DIA before the trip, there was no evidence he disclosed the payments he received from the RT broadcaster during the trip.

    As a retired US military member, Flynn was legally required to reveal the payments and obtain permission from the Secretary of State and Army Secretary prior to the trip.

    Flynn was warned by the Defense Intelligence Agency in 2014 that he was prohibited from receiving money from foreign sources without permission, according to documents released by Cummings.

    "The Oversight Committee has obtained a letter to Flynn on October 8, 2014, from the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) Office of General Counsel explicitly warning Flynn, as he entered retirement, that he was prohibited by the Constitution from receiving payments from foreign sources without advance permission," committee Democrats said in a press release.

    US media has reported Flynn spoke at a 2015 conference in Russia for the RT news outlet and received a payment of $45,000.

    Cummings and Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz earlier asserted that Flynn may have violated federal law when he applied for his security clearance without disclosing his business dealings.

    Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn (File)
    © AP Photo / Drew Angerer / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA
    Flynn, former National Security Adviser, announced his decision to resign on February 14 amid a growing controversy surrounding his conversation with Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergei Kislyak before Trump's inauguration. In his resignation letter, Flynn noted he had not given Vice President Mike Pence complete information about his conversations with Kislyak.

    Flynn’s phone talks with Kislyak have raised questions about whether the he broke a law forbidding private US citizens from engaging with foreign nations about diplomatic disputes. Retired Lt. Gen. Joseph Keith Kellogg Jr. has been named acting US national security adviser following Flynn's resignation.

    Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Pentagon, Elijah Cummings, Michael Flynn, Donald Trump, US
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