Washington- US President Donald Trump called Monday for a long jail term for his personal former lawyer Michael Cohen, who admitted lying to Congress about pursuing a real estate deal with Russia on Trump’s behalf during the 2016 election campaign.
At the same time Trump praised his former advisor Roger Stone, for refusing to testify against him, some have claimed that the praise is a form of witness tampering and illegally obstructing the Russia collusion investigation of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Trump has lambasted Cohen, saying he is making up stories about his Russia dealings to minimize his sentence on numerous counts of tax evasion, financial fraud and campaign finance violations that he has admitted in federal court in New York.
Cohen last week admitted that he had lied in his testimony about contacts with powerful Russian Moscow figures, in building a Trump Tower in the Russian capital.
Trump has repeatedly labelled the probe in alleged Russian elections as “illegal witch hunt” and accused Mueller Monday of forcing witnesses to make up lies damaging to the president.
In Argentina during the G20, Trump unleashed multiple tweets, “You mean he can do all of the TERRIBLE, unrelated to Trump, things having to do with fraud, big loans, Taxis, etc., and not serve a long prison term?” he said.
“He lied for this outcome and should, in my opinion, serve a full and complete sentence,” Trump added.
“Robert Mueller… and his out of control band of Angry Democrats, don’t want the truth, they only want lies. The truth is very bad for their mission!” Trump tweeted.
Trump tweeted that Stone’s comments showed “he will not be forced by a rogue and out of control prosecutor to make up lies and stories about ‘President Trump.'”
“Nice to know that some people still have ‘guts!'” he said.
“This is genuinely looking like witness tampering…. The fact it’s done out in the open is no defense,” said Neal Katyal, a veteran constitutional lawyer and former acting solicitor general of the Department of Justice.
Photo credit- The Straits Times