Trump's ex-aide probed over plot to 'kidnap' Turkish cleric

Michele Moreno
November 12, 2017

If this sounds vaguely familiar, it's because the Wall Street Journal reported earlier this year on a meeting Flynn hosted in NY in September 2016, in which participants basically talked about kidnapping Fethullah Gulen, removing him from his home in Pennsylvania, circumventing America's extradition process, and delivering him to Turkey's government, which considers Gulen a risky enemy. In exchange, Flynn and Flynn Jr. would be paid as much as $15 million.

Mueller, who is leading the investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 USA election and whether President Donald Trump's campaign colluded with Moscow to tilt the race in his favor, has compiled enough evidence to bring charges against Flynn and his son, NBC News reported on Sunday.

The fact that no indictment has been made public may only increase concerns for Trump's legal team. The September meeting was also attended by Turkish Energy Minister Berat Albayrak, also Erdogan's son-in-law, and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

This meeting was held in December - after the USA presidential election and during Donald Trump's transition period - as Flynn was preparing to oversee national-security policy at the White House. Manafort's lawyers may have a point in complaining, as they have, that the Foreign Agents Registration Act is rarely criminalized and that Mueller shouldn't weaponize it.

The discussions allegedly involved the possibility of transporting Mr. Gulen on a private jet to the Turkish prison island of Imrali, according to one of the people who has spoken to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is not clear if any money changed hands or if any preparatory steps were taken.

The meeting happened, however, after Flynn had already been offered the job of national security adviser in the Trump White House.

Flynn was sacked after just 24 days as Trump's national security adviser over misleading Vice President Mike Pence about his conversations with Russia's ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak. If true, it could add conspiracy, bribery and kidnapping to his charges.

The Mueller investigation into the Flynns is part of an overall probe into the Trump campaign's involvement with Russian Federation.

Both the Wall Street Journal and NBC News report this morning that special counsel Robert Mueller has focused on former Gen. Michael Flynn and his son for a reported deal to allow Turkey to get their hands on exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen. Barry Coburn, representing Flynn's son, said he had no comment.

The Daily Beast reported earlier this year that Rohrabacher was given instructions by Russian intelligence officials on how to alter sanctions legislation and to set up "a virtual show trial on Capitol Hill" last June, right at around the time that Donald Trump Jr. and key members of the Trump campaign met with Russian nationals who claimed to be representatives of the Russian government's efforts to undermine the candidacy of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Other reports by Insurance News

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