What Prosecutors Need to Show to Prove Roger Stone Guilty

There has been some absolutely shitty coverage in advance of Roger Stone’s trial that doesn’t even understand the indictment. So to try to minimize the bad coverage, I’m going to lay out what the prosecutors need to prove to show that Roger Stone is guilty.

Stone is accused of telling 5 lies to the House Intelligence Committee, plus intimidating Randy Credico in an attempt to talk him out of testifying honestly. Together, those actions will prove the obstruction charges.

I’ve mapped out each of the lies, below, with what the government needs to do to prove they’re lies, and the evidence the government has already said it’ll offer to prove that. The italicized sentences come from the indictment; where I didn’t otherwise replace it, Organization 1 is WikiLeaks.

Stone has emails with others mentioning Julian Assange and knew that when he testified

STONE testified falsely that he did not have emails with third parties about the head of Organization 1, and that he did not have any documents, emails, or text messages that refer to the head of Organization 1.

The government needs to show not only that he had emails with others (and documents and texts) talking about Julian Assange but that he knew that when he testified.

The emails and texts they’ll use to prove this include:

  • A July 25, 2016 email to Corsi with the subject line, “Get to [the head of Organization 1].” The body of the message read, “Get to [the head of Organization 1] [a]t Ecuadorian Embassy in London and get the pending [Organization 1] emails . . . they deal with Foundation, allegedly.” On or about the same day, Person 1 forwarded STONE’s email to an associate who lived in the United Kingdom and was a supporter of the Trump Campaign (GX35)
  • A July 31, 2016 email to Corsi with the subject line, “Call me MON.” saying that Ted Malloch, “should see Assange.” (GX 36)
  • An August 2, 2016 email from Corsi to Stone stating that, “Word is friend in embassy plans 2 more dumps. One shortly after I’m back. 2nd in Oct. Impact planned to be very damaging. … Time to let more than [the Clinton Campaign chairman] to be exposed as in bed w enemy if they are not ready to drop HRC. That appears to be the game hackers are now about. Would not hurt to start suggesting HRC old, memory bad, has stroke – neither he nor she well. I expect that much of next dump focus, setting stage for Foundation debacle.” (GX 37)
  • An August 19, 2016 text from Credico saying, “I’m going to have [Assange] on my show next Thursday.” (GX 46)
  • An August 21, 2016, text from Credico saying, “I have [Assange on Thursday so I’m completely tied up on that day.” (GX 46)
  • An August 26, 2016 text exchange with Credico where Credico said, “[Assange] talk[ed] about you last night,” Stone asked what Assange said, and Credico responded, “He didn’t say anything bad we were talking about how the Press is trying to make it look like you and he are in cahoots.” (GX 47)
  • August 27, 2016 text messages from Credico saying, “We are working on a [Assange] radio show,” and that, “[Assange] has kryptonite on Hillary.”
  • A September 18, 2016, email to Credico asking, “Please ask [Assange] for any State or HRC e-mail from August 10 to August 30—particularly on August 20, 2011 that mention [the subject of the article] or confirm this narrative.” (GX 48)
  • A September 19, 2016, text to Credico writing, “Pass my message . . . to [Assange].” Credico responded, “I did.” (GX 49-57)
  • An October 1, 2016, text from Credico claiming, “big news Wednesday . . . now pretend u don’t know me . . . Hillary’s campaign will die this week.” (GX 58)
  • An October 2, 2016, email from Stone to Credico saying “WTF?,” linking an article saying that Assange was canceling “highly anticipated Tuesday announcement due to security concerns.” Credico responded, “head fake.” (GX 59)
  • An October 2, 2016, text to Credico stating, “Did [Assange] back off.” On October 3, 2016, Credico responded, “I can’t tal[k] about it.” Then said, “I think it[’]s on for tomorrow.” Credico added later that day, “Off the Record Hillary and her people are doing a full-court press they [sic] keep [the head of Organization 1] from making the next dump . . . That’s all I can tell you on this line . . . Please leave my name out of it.” (GX 58)
  • An October 3, 2016 email or text, probably to Erik Prince, stating, “Spoke to my friend in London last night. The payload is still coming.”
  • An October 3, 2016 email from Matthew Boyle asking, “Assange – what’s he got? Hope it’s good.” Stone responded, “It is. I’d tell [Bannon] but he doesn’t call me back.” (GX 31)
  • An October 4, 2016 email between Bannon and Stone asking what Assange had. (GX 32)
  • An October 4 2016 text, probably from Prince, saying “hear[d] anymore from London,” to which Stone replied, “Yes – want to talk on a secure line – got Whatsapp?” (GX 32)
  • An October 7, 2016 text from Bannon assistant Alexandra Preate saying “well done.” (GX44)

The government also has to prove that Stone knew he had all these comms. One way they’ll do so is by showing they were still in Stone’s possession when they searched his home. Another way they’ll prove it is by showing that Stone shared many of them, on the record, with reporters as he was trying to walk back his story.

Stone’s references to an intermediary are not to Credico

STONE testified falsely that his August 2016 references to being in contact with the head of WikiLeaks were references to communications with a single “go-between,” “mutual friend,” and “intermediary,” who STONE identified as Credico.

The government has to prove that 1) Credico could not have been the intermediary Stone referred to publicly in early August and 2) there was at least one other person that Stone was using as an attempted intermediary to Assange.

To prove this, first of all, the government will show that there were no communications between Credico and Stone until Credico told Stone that he was going to have Assange on his show on August 19, which was after Stone repeatedly claimed to have an intermediary.

The government will also show that Stone had communications with Corsi that amount to treating him as an intermediary. It will do this by showing the following communications:

  • A July 25, 2016 email to Corsi with the subject line, “Get to [the head of Organization 1].” The body of the message read, “Get to [the head of Organization 1] [a]t Ecuadorian Embassy in London and get the pending [Organization 1] emails . . . they deal with Foundation, allegedly.” On or about the same day, Person 1 forwarded STONE’s email to an associate who lived in the United Kingdom and was a supporter of the Trump Campaign
  • A July 31, 2016 email to Corsi with the subject line, “Call me MON.” saying that Ted Malloch, “should see Assange.”
  • An August 2, 2016 email from Corsi to Stone stating that, “Word is friend in embassy plans 2 more dumps. One shortly after I’m back. 2nd in Oct. Impact planned to be very damaging. … Time to let more than [the Clinton Campaign chairman] to be exposed as in bed w enemy if they are not ready to drop HRC. That appears to be the game hackers are now about. Would not hurt to start suggesting HRC old, memory bad, has stroke – neither he nor she well. I expect that much of next dump focus, setting stage for Foundation debacle.”

The government will further show that Stone knew Credico couldn’t be the intermediary because he spoke to both Credico and Corsi about that. For example, they’ll show

  • On January 6, 2017, Credico texted Stone, “Well I have put together timelines[] and you [] said you have a back-channel way back a month before I had [the head of Organization 1] on my show . . . I have never had a conversation with [the head of Organization 1] other than my radio show . . . I have pieced it all together . . .so you may as well tell the truth that you had no back-channel or there’s the guy you were talking about early August.” (GX 61)
  • On November 30, 2017, after Stone asked Corsi to write something about about Credico, Corsi asked, “Are you sure you want to make something out of this now? Why not wait to see what [Person 2] does. You may be defending yourself too much—raising new questions that will fuel new inquiries. This may be a time to say less, not more.” (GX 41)

The government may show there was another intermediary (probably the source Corsi refused to give up when he stopped cooperating) — and in fact, this prosecution may be an attempt to force Stone to admit that.

Stone asked for favors from his intermediaries to Assange

STONE testified falsely that he did not ask the person he referred to as his “go-between,” “mutual friend,” and “intermediary,” to communicate anything to the head of Organization 1 and did not ask the intermediary to do anything on STONE’s behalf.

The government will need to prove that he asked for favors from intermediaries. This will show, at least:

  • The July 25, 2016 email to Corsi with the subject line, “Get to [the head of Organization 1].” The body of the message read, “Get to [the head of Organization 1] [a]t Ecuadorian Embassy in London and get the pending [Organization 1] emails . . . they deal with Foundation, allegedly.” On or about the same day, Person 1 forwarded STONE’s email to an associate who lived in the United Kingdom and was a supporter of the Trump Campaign. This was a request not for information about emails, but the emails themselves.
  • A September 18, 2016, email to Credico asking, “Please ask [Assange] for any State or HRC e-mail from August 10 to August 30—particularly on August 20, 2011 that mention [the subject of the article] or confirm this narrative.”
  • A September 19, 2016, text to Credico writing, “Pass my message . . . to [Assange].” Credico responded, “I did.”

The government will prove he remembered that when he testified because after he testified, he threatened Margaret Kunstler, through whom Credico asked Assange for help. I suspect they have additional proof on this front.

Stone communicated with an intermediary about Assange

STONE testified falsely that he and the person he referred to as his “go-between,” “mutual friend,” and “intermediary” did not communicate via text message or email about WikiLeaks.

The government can prove this with both the Credico and Corsi communications (though I suspect it knows of more). As above, they can prove Stone knew he had these communications because he offered them up to people and indicated he knew of them in real time to Corsi.

Stone discussed his outreach via an intermediary with the Trump campaign

STONE testified falsely that he had never discussed his conversations with the person he referred to as his “go-between,” “mutual friend,” and “intermediary” with anyone involved in the Trump Campaign.

The government needs to show Stone passed on information he represented as coming from an intermediary to Assange to the Trump campaign. To prove this the government will show:

  • Starting in June, Stone told Trump campaign officials that emails were coming.
  • Around July 18, Stone called Trump at his Trump Organization phone (patched through via Rhona Graff) and told Trump the emails would be coming out that week.
  • Sometime after the July 22 release, Stone called Trump on his cell phone and told him more emails were coming; after Trump hung up, he told Rick Gates (who was driving with him to Laguardia) that more emails were coming.
  • In October, Stone claimed to have information from WikiLeaks to both Bannon and Erik Prince.

The government will prove Stone remembered this with comms with Credico and Corsi, making it clear he was protecting Trump (any one of his pleading emails telling Trump he was protecting him since then would do the trick, as well).

The government will also show that Stone was discussing his campaign finance shenanigans with the campaign, and lied about that to HPSCI, before he cleaned up his testimony.

Stone tried to prevent Credico from telling HPSCI that he was not Stone’s intermediary

The government will show abundant communications, including from third parties, to document the pressure Stone put on Credico to lie for him. That includes:

  • A November 19, 2017 text instructing Credico to, “‘Stonewall it. Plead the fifth. Anything to save the plan’ . . . Richard Nixon.” (GX 63)
  • Multiple texts, starting on December 1, 2017, instructing Credico to do a Frank Pentangeli.” (GX 69)
  • On December 1, 2017, Stone texted Credico stating, “And if you turned over anything to the FBI you’re a fool.” Later that day, Credico responded, “You need to amend your testimony before I testify on the 15th.” Stone responded, “If you testify you’re a fool. Because of tromp I could never get away with a certain [sic] my Fifth Amendment rights but you can. I guarantee you you are the one who gets indicted for perjury if you’re stupid enough to testify.” (GX 69)
  • On or about December 24, 2017, Credico texted Stone, “I met [the head of Organization 1] for f[i]rst time this yea[r] sept 7 . . . docs prove that. . . . You should be honest w fbi . . . there was no back channel . . . be honest.” Stone replied approximately two minutes later, “I’m not talking to the FBI and if your smart you won’t either.” (GX 69)
  • On April 9, 2018, emailed Credico, “You are a rat. A stoolie. You backstab your friends-run your mouth my lawyers are dying Rip you to shreds.” Stone also threatened to take Bianca away: “take that dog away from you,” and then added, “I am so ready. Let’s get it on. Prepare to die [expletive].” (GX 112-114)
  • When Credico emailed Stone on May 21, 2018, “You should have just been honest with the house Intel committee . . . you’ve opened yourself up to perjury charges like an idiot.” Stone replied, “You are so full of [expletive]. You got nothing. Keep running your mouth and I’ll file a bar complaint against your friend [Margaret Kunstler].” (GX 124-126)

The government will also show that when Stone got in trouble for 2007 for leaving a threat for Eliot Spitzer’s father, he blamed it on Credico.

image_print
86 replies
  1. pdaly says:

    Thanks for the analysis and checklist.
    WTW, did you mean Credico and not Corsi for this Stone text?
    “•A November 19, 2017 text instructing Corsi to, “‘Stonewall it”

  2. CaliLawyer says:

    The unidentified intermediary could well be the individual Marcy outed to the FBI – that would go a long way in explaining the hysteria of Greenwald and Mate, who likely knew of/relied on that individual.

  3. e.a.f. says:

    Thank you for the information. Now lets hope the prosecutors and jury figure it out.

    Reading this, and then thinking of all the new information we are receiving regarding the trump gang its just over whelming at some level. We went through all the Roger Stone “story/drama” and now are onto the Ukraine situation. However, I do wonder if even if Stone and others go to jail for what they did, will it even slow down trump and his gang? Its important for Stone and his gang to stand trial for their crimes, but will it even slow down the illegal actions of the current “chapter”. Sending these men to jail is necessary or democracy will not do well, in my opinion.

    • PieIsDamnGood says:

      Pretty sure it’s a quote from Nixon during Watergate. Stone is trying to be sneaky and failing.

  4. bmaz says:

    Jurors don’t get selected on religion any more than they do race. That is not, in any regard, a valid factor or thought.

    • klynn says:

      IANAL.
      I understand your point on the selection process.

      In DC, faith and politics collide in unfortunate power struggles. My hope would be that the juror follows legal obligations. My past work experience within the faith community in DC gives me pause unfortunately.

      • BobCon says:

        Point of trivia is that a priest once voted to impeach Nixon.

        Father Robert Drinan was on the House Judiciary Committee as a Massachusetts rep. and also sponsored a resolution in 1973 to impeach Nixon for the bombing of Cambodia.

    • A. Non says:

      Of course jurors get selected based on race. This summer I was in a jury pool for a murder trial where the prosecutor dismissed all the black candidates and the defense attorney dismissed all the middle-aged white women without college degrees. It was so blatant that everyone who was dismissed remarked on it. Both attorneys used peremptory challenges so they didn’t have to state their reasons.

        • A. Non says:

          I agree. I was shocked and disgusted. But how to put a stop to it? Maybe keep stats on the juror selection process?

          • pjb says:

            I am pretty sure the impropriety of using peremptory challenges to affect racial composition of a jury was just ruled on by SCOTUS in the Curtis Flowers case.

  5. Matthew Harris says:

    Any idea on what the Defense is going to try to do?

    The old phrase is “When the facts are against you, you argue the law, when the law is against you, you argue the facts, when both are against you, pound on the table”

    As far as I understand it, there is no argument about the facts: neither Stone nor his defense team nor anyone else has denied that Stone sent the texts, or made the statements to congress.

    So they have to either “argue the law” or “pound on the table”. I can imagine they have several legal arguments that could be made. They could argue that his threats against Credico were not credible. They could argue that “take the 5th” was just him suggesting that Credico assert his rights. (As far as I know, it is not a crime to advocate that someone claim a right). His Godfather references were just him asking Credico to be generally uncooperative, etc.
    He could also argue that the things he lied about were either immaterial, or that he really didn’t remember.

    The problem with all of this is that they make sense one by one, but the overall picture shows that he did remember those things. The lies were deliberate and part of a coordinated campaign, since he considered them important enough to cover up.

    Which means the defense is going to be pounding on the table a lot.

    • bmaz says:

      That old phrase is ubiquitous, and totally stupid. Real trial lawyers in that situation don’t pound on the table, they try to force a mistrial and regroup.

      • Matthew Harris says:

        It is humorous, but it certainly doesn’t seem out of place in these investigations. I would definitely say that Sidney Powell is “pounding on the table”

        Or, I guess to be more precise, Stone’s lawyers could try extralegal appeals to the jurors: he was selectively prosecuted, he is being charged because he has a large public personality, or perhaps he is just an older man who has trouble keeping track of all of these things. Etc. With the appeals going not just to the jurors, but to put enough fear, uncertainty, and doubt to appeal to the conservative media and Trump’s pardon power.

        It does’t look like Stone’s lawyers have done that so far, they seem to be real lawyers, but that is one avenue for them.

        • emptywheel says:

          They did try selective prosecution, and a bunch of other shite. But ABJ is not going to let that shit in her courtroom.

          He’s going to try to smear Credico, Corsi, and Bannon, all of whom are smearable. But that still leaves all the records.

          • Matthew Harris says:

            What are the chances that Roger Stone goes off-script and gives a dramatic condemnation of Deep State conspiracies on the courthouse steps or shows up dressed up as The Joker, etc?

            He has been quiet for a while, but “Roger Stone’s trial will be totally free of publicity stunts” seems to be something that I wouldn’t put money on.

              • timbo says:

                Imma keep hope alive here! Roger’s team must have him on strong meds (aka “food poisoning”) to get him to not do a tap-dance routine on the steps of the courthouse…

      • timbo says:

        “Not until he gets a better tattoo on his back. He has such a terrible tattoo—he needs a better tattoo. Tell him I said so.”

  6. Dave Karson says:

    OT / This is a few hours old but I noticed in WAPO and NYT on-line edition that Sondland revised his testimony to say he did make a remark to Zelensky’s aide about a quid pro quo. I would think that is a big deal–yes?? Do you think it will sway any GOP Senators? Could between Sondland’s revision and what Parnas might say to Congress might be the straw that breaks the camel’s back? Best, Dave Karson

    • bmaz says:

      1) Yes, it is a big deal

      2) No, won’t sway any GOP Senators

      3) Parnas will never talk or testify to Congress. He would have to be stupid or have immunity to do that. His lawyers are competent and he won’t get immunity.

      • pjb says:

        I was highly skeptical of Parnas would cooperate with Congress before wrapping up his criminal problems, so I’m glad to hear you confirm that view. What do suppose is his game in leaking his interest in cooperation?

      • Les says:

        Number 2 is spot on. Amazing how low one can stoop when unconstrained by either decency or reality. But then Karl Rove bragged about creating the Shrub’s reality; worked for a while.

        • timbo says:

          What if they have to sit at a tribunal ratifying >all< things criminal that the President has been involved in so far as fine and dandy? That may not be as winning a recipe as some might want us all to believe…

  7. LaNita Jones says:

    Optimize it. Weaponize it. Anything to save the plan. Think of Iran-contra.

    Can’t wait for that trial. Those were some damn good hearings.

  8. harpie says:

    Hello from the DC federal courthouse, where jury selection continues for Roger Stone’s trial (it’s not being piped into the media room, so no live updates). The scene outside the courthouse is quiet right now, but there is ~ this ~: [SEE PHOTO LOL] […]

  9. harpie says:

    Stone’s defense opening statement:
    https://twitter.com/awprokop/status/1192157641033826304
    11:11 AM – 6 Nov 2019

    Rogow making what will apparently be Stone’s main defense against the false statements charges — a claim he thought the House was only asking him for documents about Russia, not WikiLeaks or Assange. // “The fact that it was a Russian investigation covered all of his answers.” […]

    • harpie says:

      We’re evidently going to be getting into poor Roger’s State of Mind.

      https://twitter.com/dfriedman33/status/1192159456047620101
      11:18 AM – 6 Nov 2019

      Rogow: “We are not here to try Russian collusion. What we are talking about here is his belief, his state of mind that the Russians did not collude with him or the Trump campaign.”

      “His state of mind undermines any argument that he did this in a conscious, evil way to undermine the committee.”

      OY!…should have brought my swamp gear….

      • Tom says:

        That sounds a lot like Barr’s “the President was frustrated ..” justification for Trump’s efforts to sabotage the Mueller investigation.

      • BobCon says:

        I think the biggest problem the defense will have with a DC jury is not any inherent ideological bias. The biggest problem they will have is that there is a probably a strong bias toward rational thinkers and not college freshmen level “how do we really know anything?” thinking.

        Which from the GOP perspective may well be an ideological bias. Of course, it only takes one juror to make a hung jury, and maybe they’re hoping for an even crazier version of the juror in Manafort’s trial.

    • Matthew Harris says:

      So to kind of put this in perspective using more common crimes.

      The police interview Al about how Bob killed someone, and ask Al if he sold Bob a gun. Al knows that he did sell Bob a gun, however, he believes that the police are *really* interested in Charley as a suspect. Since Al *believes* that the police were only interested in Charley, he thinks it is okay to lie about Bob.

      I know that is a simplification, but that is basically the argument here?

  10. harpie says:

    Trump wanted Barr to hold news conference saying the president broke no laws in call with Ukrainian leader
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-wanted-barr-to-hold-news-conference-saying-the-president-broke-no-laws-in-call-with-ukrainian-leader/2019/11/06/16d541ec-ff55-11e9-8bab-0fc209e065a8_story.html

    […] The request from Trump traveled from the president to other White House officials and eventually to the Justice Department. The president has mentioned Barr’s declination to associates in recent weeks, saying he wished Barr would have held the news conference, Trump advisers say. […]

    The request for the news conference came sometime around Sept. 25, when the administration released a rough transcript of the president’s July phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. […]

    • harpie says:

      Marcy:
      https://twitter.com/emptywheel/status/1192255056621559808
      5:38 PM – 6 Nov 2019

      I knew who the byline on this would be even before I opened it bc Barr’s PR is that good.

      I will write it up.

      Suffice it to say, EVERY SINGLE DOJ reporter should be asking why DOJ didn’t do a basic assessment of the whistleblower complaint. DOJ keeps putting out these stories to distract from that point.

      • timbo says:

        The article certainly seems to be written well and demonstrates a lot of competing interests both inside and outside the administration where all sorts of embarrassing and possibly criminally obstructive behaviors have been going on.

    • harpie says:

      Now from the NYT:
      Attorney General Declined Trump Request to Declare Nothing Illegal in Ukraine Call
      President Trump asked Attorney General William P. Barr to hold a news conference stating that no laws were broken in his call with Ukraine’s president. Mr. Barr declined. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/06/us/politics/trump-william-barr-ukraine-call.html
      Nov. 6, 2019 Updated Nov. 7, 2019, 12:55 a.m. ET

      […] In the days after the reconstructed transcript was released to the public, the White House told the Justice Department of Mr. Trump’s desire for Mr. Barr to appear publicly, according to the person who was told of it. The request was first reported by The Washington Post.

      The president wanted Mr. Barr to personally deliver the message to the news media that Mr. Trump had done nothing wrong, much as he did in a news conference he held shortly before the release of the report by Robert S. Mueller III […]
      [Sessions, Comey]
      […] Mr. Comey had told the president that he was not personally under investigation, but Mr. Trump wanted the F.B.I. director to publicly clear his name. […]

      After the release of the whistle-blower complaint about the Ukraine call, a Justice Department spokeswoman put out a statement saying that the criminal division had reviewed the official record of the conversation and determined that “there was no campaign finance violation and that no further action was warranted.” That satisfied Mr. Trump, according to one of the people with knowledge of what took place, and aides were able to redirect his concerns. […]

      Redirection….that’s a good method of dealing with a cranky two year old.

      • harpie says:

        Zelensky was also supposed to personally and publicly submit to Trump’s desires:
        https://twitter.com/kylegriffin1/status/1192172414668562432
        12:10 PM – 6 Nov 2019

        Bill Taylor: “But President Trump did insist that President Zelensky go to a microphone and say he is opening investigations of Biden and 2016 election interference, and that President Zelensky should want to do this himself.”

        • harpie says:

          Zelensky’s “statement” on CNN had been scheduled for 9/13.
          Andrew Prokop, just now, about that date:
          https://twitter.com/awprokop/status/1192444885615468545
          6:13 AM – 7 Nov 2019

          A coda to this NYT piece on Pres. Zelensky planning to give the CNN interview until luck spared him… Taylor testified that he was worried around 9/13 that Z would still go through with it. Encouraged him not to, but “body language” suggested he might [screenshots]

          TAYLOR: “It was just after- – it was on the thirteenth, I think, of September, just after the hold had been released.”
          The hold was released on 9/11.

Comments are closed.