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During Trump inaugural, Flynn greenlighted nuclear project with Russian Federation
08 December 2017, 01:44 | Damon Campbell
Whistleblower says Michael Flynn told business associate Russia sanctions would be 'ripped up'
As Donald Trump delivered his presidential inaugural address last January, his national-security adviser Michael Flynn told a former business associate in text messages that a private plan to build nuclear reactors in the Mideast was "good to go" and that USA sanctions hobbling the plan would soon be "ripped up", a whistleblower told congressional investigators.
Cummings did not identify the witness, whom he described as a whistleblower.
The chairman said he shared Mr Cummings's letter with the Republican leading the Intelligence Committee's Trump-Russia probe, as well as that panel's top Democrat, "so they may determine whether to add witnesses" to that panel's witness list.
Flynn also informed the associate that his business partners could move forward with their project, which aimed to construct a network of nuclear reactors across the Mideast with support from Russian and other worldwide interests, the whistleblower said.
He pleaded guilty last week to lying to Federal Bureau of Investigation agents about his contacts with the Moscow diplomat. Congress later passed a bipartisan measure that placed new sanctions on Russian Federation, a bill that Trump reluctantly signed in August.
A lawyer for Mr Flynn, who was sacked after only 24 days as Mr Trump's national security adviser, declined to comment.
According to the whistleblower, Copson said, "Mike has been putting everything in place for us". White House lawyer Ty Cobb said, "I respectfully decline to comment on anonymous information which impacts the Special Counsel investigation".
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The whistleblower came forward this summer and spoke to the committee about attending an inauguration party and meeting Alex Copson, managing partner of ACU Strategic Partners.
Mr Copson explained that Flynn was making sure that sanctions were going to be "ripped up" as one of the first orders of business and this would allow money to start flowing to the project.
Copson reportedly told the whistleblower that he "just got this text message" from Flynn, saying that the project was "good to go" and directing Copson to contact business colleagues to "let them know to put things in place".
In the letter, Mr. Cummings appeared to try to anticipate an argument that Mr. Gowdy might make - that he can not investigate the whistle-blower's claims as long as Mr. Flynn was still under investigation by Mr. Mueller's team. But the whistleblower says he or she could not read the actual message. The whistleblower also said that Copson intimated that US financial sanctions hobbling the nuclear project were going to be "ripped up".
The company did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.
The whistleblower was "extremely uncomfortable" with the situation, and made notes about it and Copson's name.
Mr Cummings wrote that Mr Mueller's team asked lawmakers to hold off on a public release of this information until certain investigative steps were taken. Copson was working at the time with Flynn on a project to build nuclear reactors in the Middle East, and Flynn reported in August that he served as an "advisor" to Copson's company between 2015-2016.
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