Reprinted with permission from Alternet
Judge Amy Berman Jackson has sentenced Trump ally Roger Stone to 40 months in prison. The sentence follows an outcry over President Donald Trump’s interference in the case and the radically different sentencing memos that the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued earlier this month.
Last year, Roger was found guilty on seven criminal courts in federal court, including witness tampering and lying to Congress.
The sentence that Jackson handed down was neither as harsh as what the DOJ originally recommended nor as lenient as what it recommended in a subsequent sentencing memo. On Monday, February 12, the DOJ issued a sentencing memo that recommended seven to nine years in prison for the veteran GOP operative and self-described “dirty trickster.” But after Trump posted an angry tweet lambasting that recommendation, the DOJ issued a new sentencing memo the following day and recommended a much more lenient sentence — inspiring four federal prosecutors to resign from Stone’s case. Three of them are still with the DOJ, although one of the four left the DOJ altogether.
Trump fueled the controversy when he tweeted, “Congratulations to Attorney General Bill Barr for taking charge of a case that was totally out of control and perhaps should not even been brought.”
Although Jackson’s sentence was less severe than what the DOJ recommended on February 12, she was highly critical of him and said that he “indicted” himself.
Trump has not ruled out of the possibility of granting Stone a presidential pardon. And on Thursday morning — before the sentence was handed down — Fox News’ legal analyst, libertarian Andrew Napolitano, told the hosts of Fox and Friends that Trump “might” pardon Stone the day of the sentence.
“I’m suggesting he might pardon Roger Stone today, because the minute he signs that pardon, this judge is divested of jurisdiction in the case,” Napolitano asserted.