Federal prosecutors are asking a judge to sentence President Donald Trump's confidant Roger Stone to serve between 7 and 9 years in prison after his conviction on witness tampering and obstruction charges. According to Fox, citing the unnamed officials, the requested punishment was not what had been earlier represented to government officials.
An unidentified senior DOJ official responded by telling reporters that the recommendation for Stone was "extreme, excessive and grossly disproportionate", that it was not what was discussed, and that prosecutors would clarify their position.
Stone is scheduled to be sentenced later this month.
In a court filing on Monday, prosecutors said their proposed sentence fell within US guidelines and would "accurately reflect the seriousness of his crimes and promote respect for the law".
In any event, Zelinsky has moved to withdraw from the case.
The back and forth over the recommendation for Stone's sentence follows a post on Twitter by Trump on Tuesday that faulted the recommended sentence.
On Tuesday the US President weighed in again, tweeting: "The real crimes were on the other side, as nothing happens to them". He's also resigned as Special Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia.
The prosecutors wrote within the court docket papers that "Stone's actions weren't a one-off mistake in judgement" and that he "determined to double - and triple - down on his felony conduct by tampering with a witness for months with the intention to make sure that his obstruction would achieve success".
"In the end, the investigations yielded no evidence of the involvement of any American with the Russian government or any agent operating on its behalf to interfere in the 2016 election".
Stone has denied wrongdoing and consistently criticized the case against him as politically motivated.
Presiding Judge Amy Berman Jackson isn't bound by the recommendations from either side.
"Indeed, Bannon viewed Stone as the Trump campaign's access point to WikiLeaks". However he began urgent Credico to dealer a contact, and Credico testified that he advised Stone to work by his personal middleman.
Stone was also accused of tampering with Credico's testimony when Credico was summoned to testify before Congress and speak with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
In addition, prosecutors argued that Stone used threats of violence to keep a possible intermediary with WikiLeaks silent, telling comedian and talk show host Randy Credico in writing to "Prepare to die", prosecutors said.