Trump aide Papadopoulos gets 14 days in prison

Papadopoulos lawyers released a memo on Friday seeking a reduced jail sentence for their client lying to the FBI when interviewed in January 2017

Papadopoulos lawyers released a memo on Friday seeking a reduced jail sentence for their client lying to the FBI when interviewed in January 2017

Moss said Papadopoulos will remain free until the federal Bureau of Prisons decides when and where he should surrender.

Papadopoulos has cooperated for more than a year with Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe into Russian interference in the USA presidential election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign.

He pleaded guilty last October to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about the timing of meetings with alleged go-betweens for Moscow. In fact, the special counsel's office has secured five other guilty pleas or convictions. He admitted to lying about those contacts to Mueller's team, which investigators said led them to miss a chance to interview the professor, Joseph Mifsud. Trump tweeted. Senator Mark Warner, the senior Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, which has its own Russian Federation collusion investigation, applauded Mueller's work. The professor told Papadopoulos the Russians had "dirt" on Trump's Democratic presidential rival Hillary Clinton in the form of "thousands of emails".

Judge Randolph Moss said he took the "genuine remorse" into consideration for the sentencing. "I can't guarantee. All I can say is, my memory is telling me that I never shared it with anyone on the campaign".

"In some ways it constitutes a calculated exercise of self-interest over the national interest", the judge said.

Dressed in a navy suit and navy polka dot tie, he kept his eyes closed for several minutes before the hearing began.

Papadopoulos' wife, Simona Mangiante Papadopoulos, has been publicly lobbying the president to pardon her husband.

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Moss said he gave Papadopoulos 14 days because he researched how many defendants with this type of charge resulted in prison time - and it was fewer than half.

The punishment was far less than the maximum six-month sentence sought by the government but more than the probation that Papadopoulos and his lawyers had asked for.

While Papadopoulos deserved a harsher punishment than probation, the judge said, he also deserved credit for trying to cooperate and for his apparent contrition. But when pressed, Papadopoulos refused to completely shut the door on the possibility that the information made its way to other people on the campaign.

"The campaign was fully aware of what I was doing", Papadopoulos said. "4 days for $28 MILLION - $2 MILLION a day", he wrote on Twitter, an apparent, if inflated, estimation of the Russian Federation investigation's cost.

"We were hoping for no jail time but two weeks is OK", Maria Stamatopoulos said.

Papadopoulos' lawyer Thomas Breen had asked for leniency for his client.

But the attorney said "the president of the United States hindered this investigation more than Papadopoulos ever could".

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Breen told a rapt courtroom that Papadopoulos has already faced his penalty over the past year, and realized he needed to disavow the Trump administration in favor of the truth.

"We were going in there to cooperate potentially against those two individuals", he said.

Mueller's prosecutors revealed the existence of this exchange in court papers filed in October, and a lingering mystery in the months since has been who in the Trump campaign - if anyone - Papadopoulos might have told about the Russian dirt.

Papadopoulos didn't have any comment after the sentencing, but had an orange "team Putin" shirt thrown at him when leaving the courthouse.

According to Bloomberg News, the committee indicated that an investigator had been used to find Mifsud, who had disappeared for months, and was told the Maltese professor may be dead. And, the prosecutors add, Papadopoulos has been hard for them to handle since he was arrested in July 2017.

Prosecutors say Papadopoulos' lies caused irreparable harm to the investigation and he did not provide substantial assistance. He publicly contradicted, in his court filing, congressional testimony from Sessions about Sessions' response to the Putin-Trump meeting proposal. Mifsud left the United States and not returned, after the Federal Bureau of Investigation found him in the US on February 11, 2017, about two weeks after Papadopoulos' first interview. He received a sentence of 30 days in prison and a $20,000 fine.

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