Former national security adviser Michael Flynn is to plead guilty on Friday to making false statements to the FBI, the first plea by any of the four former Trump advisers charged so far in a wide-ranging investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller.
Court documents show Flynn, an early and vocal supporter on the campaign trail of President Donald Trump whose business dealings and foreign interactions made him a central focus of Mueller’s investigation, will admit to lying about his conversations with Russia’s ambassador to the United States during the transition period before Trump’s inauguration.
The expected guilty plea makes the retired Army lieutenant general the first person to have actually worked in the Trump White House to face formal charges in the investigation, which is examining possible coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign to influence the outcome of the 2016 election.
Flynn has been under investigation for a wide range of allegations, including lobbying work on behalf of Turkey, but the fact that he was charged only with a single count of false statements suggests he is cooperating with Mueller’s investigation in exchange for leniency.
Earlier, Mr Trump had taken a particular interest in the status of the Flynn investigation. Former FBI Director James Comey has said Mr Trump had asked him in a private Oval Office meeting to consider ending the investigation.