Jan 13, 2020

Prosecutors recommend almost 5 years in prison for former GOP Rep. Chris Collins

Rep. Chris Collins. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

Federal prosecutors recommended Monday that former Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.) be sentenced to up to 57 months in prison for pleading guilty to insider trading last year.

Why it matters: Collins was the first congressman to endorse President Trump in 2016 and resigned in September after changing his not-guilty plea. Prosecutors argue that he should not receive leniency because he continued to serve in Congress while hiding his crimes.

Context: In August 2018, Collins was arrested in connection with an alleged insider trading scheme involving Innate Immunotherapeutics, an Australian drug company whose board he sat on for years.

  • Prosecutors allege that Collins received a tip about about a failed clinical trial involving the company's only product.
  • He then allegedly called his son Cameron, who sold off shares of Innate stock the next day.

What they're saying:

"In committing insider trading and later lying to federal agents to cover it up, and in continuing to actively serve in the House of Representatives during that time period, Collins came to embody the cynical idea that those in power who make the laws are not required to follow them. This surely was not lost on him, but it did not cause him to hesitate in making the choice to commit multiple crimes while holding one of the most visible and prestigious jobs in the United States."

Read the full memo.

Go deeper: GOP Rep. Duncan Hunter submits letter of resignation after guilty plea

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Former GOP Rep. Chris Collins sentenced to 26 months in insider trading case

Ex-Rep. Chris Collins ahead of a sentencing hearing on Jan. 17 in New York City. Photo: Scott Heins/Getty Images

Former Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.) was sentenced on Friday to just over two years in prison for making false statements to the FBI and conspiracy to commit securities fraud, the Washington Post reports.

Flashback: Federal prosecutors recommended this week that Collins receive up to 57 months in prison for pleading guilty to insider trading last year. Collins, the first congressman to endorse President Trump in 2016, resigned in September.

Go deeperArrowJan 17, 2020

Michael Flynn seeks to formally withdraw his guilty plea

Michael Flynn. Photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

Former national security adviser Michael Flynn filed court papers on Tuesday to withdraw his guilty plea related to allegedly lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S.

Why now: The move comes only one week after the Justice Department shifted its position on his punishment, recommending he serve up to six months in prison, and comes days before his Jan. 28 sentencing.

Go deeperArrowJan 15, 2020

Prosecutors recommend Roger Stone serve 7–9 years in prison

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Federal prosecutors recommended in a sentencing memo filed Monday that Trump associate Roger Stone serve 87–108 months in prison — or 7–9 years — for crimes that include obstruction of justice, lying to Congress and witness tampering.

The big picture: Stone, one of several Trump associates to be indicted as a result of the Mueller investigation, was found guilty in November of lying to Congress about his efforts to learn more about when WikiLeaks would publish damaging emails about 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Feb 11, 2020 - Politics & Policy