In yet another nod to the convoluted and confusing mess of the RussiaGate phenomenon, yet another Kremlin-linked politico has been sentenced.
What began as a look into possible “collusion” between the 2016 Trump campaign and the Russian government by Robert Mueller has blossomed into something far larger – much to the dismay of those ensnared by the Special Counsel.
Mueller’s team concluded that President Trump himself was not culpable in the case of Russian “coordination” or “conspiracy”, but the wide scope given to Robert Mueller has allowed the seasoned prosecutor to nab a great many auxiliary characters in the process. One such man, Samuel Patten, is now facing punishment for his attempts to illegally forego disclosure of his foreign connections.
Patten, 47, pleaded guilty in August to communicating with U.S. lawmakers and news media organizations on behalf of a Russia-aligned political party in Ukraine called the Opposition Bloc without disclosing that work to the Justice Department, in violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), among other offenses.
Patten is a former business partner of Konstantin Kilimnik, a Russian national indicted by Mueller and accused of having ties to Russian intelligence.
In Patten’s guilty plea he also admitted to arranging for a U.S. citizen to act as a straw purchaser to pay $50,000 for four tickets to the inauguration of Republican President Donald Trump on behalf of a Ukrainian oligarch, who reimbursed Patten through a Cypriot account.
Patten was remorseful during the sentencing hearing.
“I behaved as though the law didn’t apply to me and that was wrong,” he said.
Patten’s sentence was particularly irksome to many, however.
A U.S. judge on Friday sentenced Republican political consultant Samuel Patten to 36 months of probation, 500 hours of community service and a $5,000 fine in a case spun out of U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe.
The light punishment will likely be seen by many Americans as yet another example of political chicanery in a nation bereft with corruption and collusion.
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