“A high-ranking senior official of the government making false statements to the FBI while on the physical premises of the White House.”
At one point, Judge Sullivan asked the prosecutor whether the special counsel’s office had ever considered charging Flynn with treason.
The judge told Flynn: “Arguably, you sold your country out.”
Judge Sullivan also said he “can’t hide my disgust, my disdain” for the offence.
Flynn reaffirmed his guilt in court and said he “was aware” at the time of his FBI interview that lying to them was a crime.
…The retired US Army three-star lieutenant general lied to FBI agents about his conversations with the Russian ex-ambassador to the US, Sergei Kislyak.
He falsely told investigators in January 2017 that he had not discussed US sanctions against Moscow with Mr Kislyak before Mr Trump had taken office, according to his plea agreement.
Flynn also lied about his request to Mr Kislyak that Russia delay or block a vote at the United Nations on a resolution condemning Israeli settlements.
…Given the district court judge’s stern words, it appeared entirely possible Flynn would receive some sort of prison sentence.
That was enough to leave Flynn and his [defense] team scrambling – and perhaps wondering whether there are other ways he could co-operate, such as in the upcoming trial of two of his business partners accused of acting as unregistered agents of the Turkish government.
…In addition to the possible collusion line of inquiry, the special counsel is understood to be [scrutinizing] whether Mr Trump or aides sought to obstruct justice by blocking scrutiny of Flynn.