Who is Roger Stone, the longtime Trump ally caught in Mueller's net?

Roger Stone is a confidant of President Donald Trump

Roger Stone is a confidant of President Donald Trump

With dozens of reporters gathered outside the court building awaiting a statement, Stone proclaimed that the charges against him were "politically motivated" and that he had been "framed" by Mueller's prosecutors.

USA prosecutors, in the court filing, accused Stone of lying to Congress about his public statements and communications with others suggesting he may have had advance knowledge of plans by Wikileaks to release hacked emails and obstructing Congress' work.

Armed FBI agents showed up at the door of Stone's Fort Lauderdale home just before 6:00 a.m. on Friday morning and led him away in handcuffs.

The two men, however, remained in close contact, the indictment underlying that Stone "maintained regular contact with and publicly supported the Trump Campaign through the 2016 election". His case will be transferred to Washington, D.C. He was charged by special counsel Robert Mueller with seven counts, including obstruction of justice, making false statements and witness tampering, in Mueller's ongoing investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Stone was indicted on charges that he lied to the House intelligence panel about conversations he had about the website WikiLeaks and that he obstructed Mueller's probe. It says Stone told campaign officials he had information indicating WikiLeaks had obtained documents damaging to Hillary Clinton's campaign.

In the indictment of Stone, however, Mueller's team alleges that a top Trump campaign official directed Stone to contact WikiLeaks regarding the hack and release of thousands of Democratic emails.

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The indictment does not name the official or say who directed the outreach to Stone.

The 66-year-old faces seven charges in connection with Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe into alleged collusion between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign. That alleged lie, which he also told to Congress, forms the basis for some of his other criminal charges in Friday's indictment. Stone had been predicting his indictment for some time.

Mr Stone is the sixth Trump aide or adviser charged by Mr Mueller and the 34th person overall.

Longtime informal adviser to President Trump Roger Stone (right) and Alex Jones of Infowars outside a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on December 11, 2018.

Before the emails were made public in October of 2016, Stone gave a speech and posted a series of tweets that seemed to foreshadow their disclosure and acknowledge that he served as a "backchannel to Assange", referring to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Former federal prosecutor and MSNBC legal analyst Cynthia Alksne had it up to here with President Donald Trump's dissembling lawyer Rudy Giuliani, saying Friday his defense of indicted Trump associate Roger Stone amounted to "an assault on our democratic process".

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Born in CT in 1952, Mr Stone first got involved in politics at the age of 8, agitating for Democratic candidate John F Kennedy.

Interested in Russia Investigation? When Trump considered running ahead of the 2012 and 2016 elections, Stone was one of the first consultants he turned to.

They also did not reveal whether any Trump associates conspired with Russian Federation or had advance knowledge of the hacking.

Stone has claimed that Credico, a progressive NY political activist and radio host, served as his backchannel to WikiLeaks during the 2016 campaign.

"Categorically not, no. Absolutely not", Stone said. In a circus-like atmosphere outside the courthouse, as supporters cheered him on and spectators shouted "Lock Him Up", Stone proclaimed his innocence and predicted his vindication.

Over the next three decades, Stone would repeatedly encourage Trump - whose celebrity status grew more solidified by his foray into reality television - to seek the presidency.

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