WASHINGTON – The federal judge handling the case against Roger Stone said Friday she is considering imposing a gag order against the longtime Trump confidant, who was indicted on Jan. 25 in the special counsel’s investigation.
“This is a criminal proceeding, and not a public relations campaign,” District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson said in a hearing attended by Stone in Washington, D.C.
Jackson went on to suggest that Stone was handling the case so far “like a book tour,” according to reporters in the court room.
Stone, a longtime GOP political operative, has said he will appeal any gag order imposed by Jackson, who has also handled the special counsel’s case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.
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Stone noted at a press conference Thursday that he makes his living as a public relations consultant and by discussing and writing about politics. He is a correspondent for Infowars as well as men’s fashion editor for The Daily Caller. He has given numerous interviews in the week since his indictment, including with The Caller.
Stone was indicted on seven counts in the special counsel’s investigation. Five charges are for making false statements to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence during a deposition on Sept. 26, 2017. Prosecutors allege that Stone lied during his House testimony when he denied discussing WikiLeaks with associates and Trump campaign officials.
The indictment does not accuse Stone of having contact with WikiLeaks or Russian operatives or of conspiring with either to hack and release emails stolen from Democrats.
Stone is also not accused of making false statements in his congressional testimony, even though he denied having contact with WikiLeaks or Russian operatives.
Stone pleaded not guilty to the charges Tuesday. On Thursday, Stone’s lawyers and the special counsel agreed to place the case on a “complex” track due to the “excessive and complex” evidence recovered during FBI searches of Stone’s residences in January.
Stone has complained publicly about the FBI searches, which transpired before sunrise at Stone’s home near Miami.
Stone says that 29 armed FBI agents swarmed his home. He has also questioned how a CNN reporter was able to film the incident.
President Trump told the Caller on Wednesday that he is considering reviewing FBI policy in light of the raid against Stone.