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25th Jan 2019

Trump ally Roger Stone arrested in FBI investigation into Russian political interference

Robert Mueller's inquiry has indicted the political consultant on seven charges

Marc Mayo

Robert Mueller’s inquiry has indicted the political consultant on seven charges

The investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election has claimed another suspect with Roger Stone, a key ally for Donald Trump, arrested on charges of obstruction, witness tampering and making false statements.

The 66-year-old was arrested in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on Friday, as confirmed by a spokesperson for the Mueller inquiry. A warrant for his arrest was issued the day before by a federal grand jury in Washington DC.

It is alleged that Stone contacted senior officials in the Trump campaign in the summer of 2016 to discuss handing over information from WikiLeaks that would be damaging to Hilary Clinton’s campaign.

“On multiple occasions, Stone told senior Trump campaign officials about materials possessed by Organization 1 [WikiLeaks] and the timing of future releases,” official documents state.

Furthermore, Stone is alleged to have made “multiple false statements” about his relationship with WikiLeaks, to have “falsely denied possessing records that contained evidence of these interactions” and “attempted to persuade a witness to provide false testimony to and withhold pertinent information from the investigations”.

There are also claims that the lobbyist and political consultant made false statements to a congressional committee and about his source close to WikiLeaks.

Stone first began working in US politics as part of Richard Nixon’s successful electoral bid in 1972. He went on to be involved with Ronald Reagan, George H W Bush, and 1996 Republican candidate Bob Dole.

Since the 1990s, he has been an informal adviser to Trump’s casino businesses and was part of his ill-fated attempt to run for president as head of the Reform Party in 2000.

His role in the 2016 election has been under scrutiny for some time, notably in the 2017 Netflix documentary Get Me Roger Stone.