Trump plans to apologize for ex-aide Michael Flynn: supply

© Reuters. Former National Security Advisor Flynn comes to the US District Court in Washington for a hearing

From Steve Holland

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump has told his allies that he wants to pardon his former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI during an investigation into Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential election, the situation said on Tuesday.

Trump may change his mind about the proposed pardon, which is one of a series of pardons the Republican president is considering, the source said. The news was first reported by Axios.

Democrat Joe Biden defeated Trump in the US election earlier this month, but Trump has refused to officially admit, claiming without evidence that there was widespread electoral fraud. However, Trump on Monday gave permission for federal funds to flow into Biden so that he can meet his transitional obligations before his inauguration on Jan. 20.

If Trump gives Flynn a respite, it would be the highest pardon the president has given since he took office.

Flynn, a retired Army general, pleaded guilty in 2017 to lying to the FBI about interactions he had with Russia's ambassador to the United States in the weeks leading up to Trump's inauguration. He has since tried to withdraw the plea, arguing that prosecutors violated his rights and led him to a plea agreement.

Flynn was one of several former Trump aides who pleaded guilty or convicted as part of former Special Advisor Robert Mueller's investigation into Moscow's interference in the 2016 US election to bolster Trump's candidacy.

Trump said in March he was strongly considering a full pardon for Flynn. He said the FBI and the Justice Department "destroyed" Flynn's and his family's life.

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