‘I did not intentionally lie’: Roger Stone associate Jerome Corsi rejects Mueller deal
WASHINGTON – Jerome Corsi, a conservative peddler of conspiracy theories who has become enmeshed in the investigation into Russian election meddling, said Monday he rejected a plea deal with special counsel Robert Mueller because he did not intentionally lie to investigators.
Corsi has drawn the scrutiny of Mueller and his team, who are examining whether Corsi had advance information on the release of damaging emails related to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, which were published by WikiLeaks.
The special counsel has sought to determine if Corsi alerted the Trump presidential campaign through Roger Stone – a flamboyant former adviser to Donald Trump – to the timing of the WikiLeaks release of the emails, which the U.S. intelligence community has determined were stolen by Russian intelligence operatives.
Last week, Corsi, the author of “Killing the Deep State: The Fight to Save President Trump,” indicated he was in plea negotiations with Mueller.
Corsi told NBC News Monday that he initially told investigators that he had no communication with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange ahead of the email dump, but changed his testimony after being confronted with a collection of his own emails from 2016.
But he insists that he did not intentionally lie to Mueller’s team, telling NBC News he had simply forgotten “almost everything about emails in 2016.”
“They want me to say I willfully lied. I did not intentionally lie,” Corsi told NBC.
“I will not lie to save my life,” he added. “I’d rather sit in prison and rot for as long as these thugs want me to.”
Corsi, 72, said in a Nov. 12 video that “I fully anticipate that in the next few days I will be indicted by Mueller for some form or other of giving false information to the special counsel.”
Mueller’s team spent two months interviewing him after serving him with a subpoena on Aug. 28, Corsi said in the video.
“This has been one of the most frightening experiences of my life. At the end of two months, my mind was mush, going over the same ground over and over again,” he said, adding that he had “nothing to hide” and that he felt he “had committed no crimes.”
He also explained that he made comments indicating he knew in advance that WikiLeaks would publish emails from Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta because he worked it out himself.
“Best of my recollection, what I knew in advance about what Julian Assange was going to do in terms of having the Podesta emails, I figured out,” he said in the video, promising to explain how he accomplished that feat at a later date.
Corsi gained notoriety for stoking the false notion that President Barack Obama had not been born in the United States, a campaign that Trump pushed in the years before he announced his presidential run.
Stone and Corsi have both denied any advance knowledge of the stolen emails.
Contriubtung: Kevin Johnson
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