February 11, 2020

On February 10, 2020, the Department of Justice recommended a seven to nine year sentence for Roger Stone on charges of obstructing  a congressional investigation, making false statements to Congress, and witness tampering during the Russia investigation. Trump tweeted that the recommendation was “horrible and very unfair” and shortly after, a senior DOJ official intervened to overrule the front-line prosecutors and announced that they would be recommending a more lenient sentence. Four DOJ prosecutors have resigned from the case since the announcement. 

CREW has requested communications from the DOJ and the US Attorney’s office about Stone’s sentencing recommendation, including with President Trump and Attorney General Barr.

The requested documents will shed light on the process DOJ used to arrive at a sentencing recommendation and the extent to which that recommendation was influenced by Trump and other DOJ officials seeking to accommodate his complaints. This highly unusual interference by senior DOJ officials in Stone’s prosecution raises serious questions about the integrity of DOJ’s processes. The extent to which these processes have been improperly influenced by the president is of urgent public concern.

Read the requests here and here (expedited).