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'Status' of Mueller Probe Should Delay Flynn's Sentencing, Lawyers Say

National Security Advisor Michael Flynn arrives in the East Room of the White House on Feb. 13, 2017. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

WASHINGTON — A postponement has been requested in the sentencing of former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn because of special counsel Robert Mueller’s unfolding probe into Russia’s campaign influence operation.

Mueller and Flynn’s attorneys filed a joint status report on the case Wednesday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

“Due to the status of the Special Counsel’s investigation, the parties do not believe that this matter is ready to be scheduled for a sentencing hearing at this time,” states the document.

The next joint status report is due no later than May 1.

Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI on Dec. 1 and indicated he’s working with special counsel investigators. The court filing said Flynn “falsely stated and represented” to FBI agents that while working on the Trump transition team on Dec. 29, 2016, he “did not ask the government of Russia’s ambassador to the United States to refrain from escalating the situation in response to sanctions that the United States had imposed against Russia that same day,” along with Flynn telling investigators he “did not recall the Russian Ambassador subsequently telling him that Russia had chosen to moderate its response to those sanctions as a result of his request.”

Flynn was also charged with lying about a Dec. 22 conversation, saying he “did not ask the Russian Ambassador to delay the vote on or defeat a pending United Nations Security Council resolution; and that the Russian Ambassador subsequently never described to Flynn Russia’s response to his request.”

He faces up to five years in prison on the charge. He was released with the requirement that he check in weekly until sentencing.

Flynn said in a statement at the time that his actions “were wrong, and, through my faith in God, I am working to set things right.”

“My guilty plea and agreement to cooperate with the Special Counsel’s Office reflect a decision I made in the best interests of my family and of our country,” he said. “I accept full responsibility for my actions.”

Flynn, who led the Defense Intelligence Agency from 2012 to 2014, served in the Trump administration from Day One. He worked for the Trump campaign while still running his lobbying firm, advocating for the government of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in an Election Day op-ed. After resigning from the Trump administration, Flynn filed as a foreign agent for work done on behalf of the Turkish government.

The national security advisor lasted less than a month in office, stepping down Feb. 13 for reportedly misleading Vice President Mike Pence about the nature of his conversations, which were leaked to the press, with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak. Two days later, at a press conference, Trump called Flynn “a wonderful man” who has “been treated very, very unfairly by the media.”