Business

Former Trump National Security Adviser Was Paid To Advise Russian Firms

Former Trump National Security Adviser Was Paid To Advise Russian Firms

Former national security adviser Michael Flynn, who was sacked by President Donald Trump for misleading the administration about his contacts with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, is now revealed to have accepted $45,386 to speak at a celebration of Russia's propaganda television network in 2015.

A Flynn spokesman said Flynn informed the DIA before he went to Moscow and after his return. In one case, Flynn, a retired lieutenant general, was paid more than $33,000 to speak a conference in Moscow sponsored by RT, the government-run news organization.

Flynn received tens of thousands of dollars from Russian companies in 2015, just before he became a top surrogate to Trump and well before his brief stint in the United States government, The Wall Street Journal reports, citing documents obtained by Congress. It stemmed from statements about whether the pair talked about sanctions brought by the Obama administration in response to alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 USA election.

Flynn was sacked less than month into the president's term after it was revealed that he misled the Vice President Pence about his communications with the Russian ambassador before the inauguration.

Documents recently filed by Flynn showed his consulting firm was paid more than $500,000 by a company tied to the government of Turkey for lobbying during the fall transition period, which critics say was ethically questionable.

Though Flynn began advising the Trump campaign several months after the RT function, his appearance at the event fueled allegations that the Trump team was too soft on Putin.

Flynn and his son also received an unspecified amount in expenses paid by RT for business-class flights to and from Moscow and for their three-day stay at the Hotel Metropol. The biggest paycheck came from RT, which handed over $45,000, and during that evening, he also dined next to Vladimir Putin.


The White House did not immediately respond to request for comment.

The intelligence community said in a declassified report that RT was part of Moscow's effort to undermine confidence in the US electoral system.

Cummings letters Thursday also asked for all documents related to whether he may have violated requirements on his application for security clearance by failing to disclose certain information.

On Mar. 10, Flynn disclosed that he was working as a representative for Turkish government while he had advised the Trump campaign.

Depending on the type of work that Flynn did for the two Russian firms - which the letter does not make clear - it may not be subject to disclosure to the Justice Department under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA).

The White House has claimed Trump was unaware of Flynn's work on behalf of a foreign government when he selected Flynn to serve as national security adviser.

In letters sent to Trump, Defense Secretary James Mattis and FBI Director James Comey, Cummings said Flynn "violated the Constitution by accepting tens of thousands of dollars from an agent of a global adversary that attacked our democracy". After his resignation from Trump's Cabinet, Flynn retroactively registered his activities as an agent representing Turkey in a filing earlier this month.


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