Published: Sat, March 16, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

'ILLEGAL AND CONFLICTED': President Trump Says There 'Should be no Mueller Report'

'ILLEGAL AND CONFLICTED': President Trump Says There 'Should be no Mueller Report'

Pointing to fresh evidence of anti-Trump bias in the Justice Department, President Trump said Friday that special counsel Robert Mueller should never have been appointed, and his forthcoming report shouldn't exist.

The U.S. Special Counsel's Office on Friday asked a court to delay sentencing for U.S. President Donald Trump's former deputy campaign chairman, Rick Gates, amid "ongoing investigations" stemming from the Russian Federation investigation.

It's unclear if the delay of Gates' sentencing is reflection of Mueller's timeline or the status of the other investigations.

Gates is one of several Trump advisers who have been charged or pleaded guilty to crimes stemming from the federal investigation into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election and possible collusion with Trump's campaign.

The filing comes amid signs that Mueller is wrapping up his work and will deliver his final report to Attorney General William Barr concerning his probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

In a plea deal a year ago, Gates pleaded guilty to conspiracy and to making false statements to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the special counsel's office.

Gates was a star witness in that case and testified against Manafort, who was sentenced by two judges to serve a total of 7.5 years in prison for financial fraud.

Still, Mueller prosecutor Andrew Weissmann, who led the Manafort case, told a federal judge earlier this year that a meeting Gates attended with Manafort in August 2016 went to the "heart" of the Russian Federation investigation.

Prosecutors have not revealed exactly what piqued their interest in the meeting, though court papers show it involved a discussion of a possible Russia-Ukraine peace plan.

The same office is also investigating lobbying for Ukraine in which Gates was involved.

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