23:41 GMT26 February 2020
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    On Tuesday, four US prosecutors assigned to the case of Roger Stone, an ex-Trump campaign adviser who was convicted on seven charges in November 2019, withdrew from the case after the Department of Justice (DOJ) said that it was planning to lower the sentencing recommendation for the president’s former aid.

    Hillary Clinton took to Twitter on Tuesday night to express her feelings about the recent announcement that the DOJ might reduce the sentencing recommendation for Donald Trump’s former adviser Roger Stone, directly asking the US president whether he realised that “intimidating judges” was “the behaviour of failed-state fascists”.  

    Clinton’s tweet was a reaction to Donald Trump’s earlier post that criticised US Judge Amy Berman Jackson, as it was reported that she would be presiding over Stone’s case. Jackson was also behind the sentencing of former chairman of Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign Paul Manafort, who was given 73 months in prison.

    ​However, the former secretary of state’s tweet received far more reactions than the initial message of her 2016 presidential rival, as many social media users were did not hesitate to mock Clinton for her alleged wrongdoings and unfulfilled presidential ambitions.

    What Happened to Stone’s Case?

    Roger Stone served as a campaign adviser for Donald Trump during his 2016 presidential bid. He was arrested in January 2019 in relation to Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s alleged interference in the 2016 US presidential election. Stone was accused of lying in his 2017 testimony to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence about his alleged mediation between the Trump campaign and the WikiLeaks whistleblowing website, which released hacked Democratic National Committee emails embarrassing Hillary Clinton.

    In November 2019, Stone was found guilty on seven charges, including giving false testimonies to Congress, obstruction of justice, and witness tampering.

    Roger Stone, longtime ally of U.S. President Donald Trump,  holds a news conference in Washington
    © REUTERS / Leah Millis
    Roger Stone, longtime ally of U.S. President Donald Trump, holds a news conference in Washington

    On Monday, US prosecutors recommended to a judge that Stone should face seven to nine years in prison, which Donald Trump immediately slammed as “horrible” and an “unfair situation”. This was soon echoed by an anonymous DOJ official, who called the sentencing recommendation “excessive and grossly disproportionate” and suggested that it would be reviewed.

    ​Following the news, four prosecutors assigned to the Stone case – Aaron Zelinsky, Johnathan Kravis, Adam Jed, and Michael Marando – quit.

    Donald Trump later insisted that he did not order the US Department of Justice to reduce Stone’s prison time, even though he had “the absolute right” to do so, with the DOJ clarifying that the timing of the president’s tweet was an “inconvenient coincidence”.

    Roger Stone is expected to receive his sentence on 20 February.

    Tags:
    US Department of Justice, United States, Roger Stone, Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton
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