Ex-Trump aide Flynn denies Muslim cleric kidnap plan claims

Posted November 12, 2017

Special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating Michael Flynn and his son's alleged plan to forcibly remove a Muslim cleric from the United States and deliver him to Turkey, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The focus of Mueller's investigation is to examine whether a discussion at 21 Club in NY leading to a deal to transport the cleric to Turkey would have resulted in Flynn receiving millions of dollars in secret payments, and whether Flynn was, in fact, part of that discussion.

Flynn has come under investigation for his ties both to Russian Federation and Turkey, and the Wall Street Journal reported Friday that the inquiry from Special Counsel Robert Mueller extends to a percolating plot against Poconos preacher Fetullah Gulen.

Most of what has been reported about Mueller's questioning of Flynn's lobbying work has concerned his efforts on behalf of Turkey.

Federal investigators have been probing Flynn's lobbying efforts on behalf of Turkey, including an alleged meeting with senior Turkish officials in December 2016 where he was offered millions of dollars to secure the return of the Turkish president's chief rival to Turkey and see that a US case against a Turkish national was dismissed. Discussions between Flynn and Turkish representatives reportedly took place there.

The discussions between Flynn and Turkish government reps "involved the possibility of transporting Mr. Gulen on a private jet to the Turkish prison island of Imrali".

Sources said the December meeting was a follow up to an earlier meeting on the same matter. It is not clear if any money changed hands or if any preparatory steps were taken. But today's news cycle has brought allegations against General Flynn, ranging from kidnapping to bribery, that are so outrageous and prejudicial that we are making an exception to our usual rule: "they are false", they wrote in a statement. His name has tangentially come up in relation to the investigation, but this is the first direct mention the FBI is looking at a meeting in which Rohrabacher participated.

The NBC News report said the evidence was related to Flynn's lobbying work throughout the latter half of 2016 - while he was a top Trump campaign surrogate - for a businessman with ties to the Turkish government. Turkey has requested the cleric be legally extradited, but the US government has so far rejected this. "Evidence that Flynn was prepared to act in such an unlawful way could help prove a case against him in other activities as well involving his ties to Russian Federation during the campaign".

Flynn is a central figure in Mueller's investigation because of conversations he had with then-Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak previous year and because he waited until March to retroactively register with the Justice Department as a foreign agent for the work he did for a Turkish businessman.