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Michael Flynn, the ex-staffer pleads not guilty to charges of illegally lobbying for Turkey

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An ex-business partner of former national security Advisor, Michael Flynn pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to the charge by a federal grand jury with alleged illegal lobbying for the Turkish government in the United States.

Bijan Rafiekian, also known as Bijan Kian, appeared in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Virginia on Tuesday and entered a not guilty plea. He demanded a court proceedings, now expected in early 2019.

Kian has been charged, after allegedly, in a conspiracy involved to “covertly influence U.S. politicians and public opinion” against a Turkish citizen residing in the United States, whose extradition has been requested by the Turkish government, which, according to an indictment unsealed on Monday. Kamil Ekim Alptekin Istanbul was also loaded.

The Turkish people is Fethullah Gülen, the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has to forward the accused to a failed coup.

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The alleged plot, detailed Monday in the indictment of a company included, founded by Kian, referred to in the filing as “company A”, based on “Person A” national security know-how. Person A Michael Flynn.

According to the indictment, to the purpose of the conspiracy to delegitimize An organization”, the Turkish citizens in the eyes of the American public and the United States politicians, with the aim of obtaining his extradition, the meeting of the resistance of the U.S. Department of justice.”

Kian and Alptekin allegedly tried to hide the fact that the Turkish government, the management of the work. According to the indictment, the Turkish Cabinet-level officials, the budget approved for the project, and Alptekin, allegedly, Turkish officials provided updates on the project.

Both Kian and Alptekin failed to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), to register under the which Flynn, the former White House national security adviser, also, connected with his work with the Turkey. According to the indictment, Rafiekian vice chairman of Flynn’s business group, the Flynn Intel group. The two worked during 2016, to have to look for ways to cleric Gulen extradited from the US to Turkey.

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Kian is charged with conspiracy and as an illegal agent of the Turkish government. If convicted, him a maximum sentence of six years in prison for conspiracy, and 10 years is threatening for the prosecution is, as a foreign agent. Alptekin is also charged with conspiracy and acting as an agent of Turkey, but also faces four counts of making false statements to the FBI. He faces up to 35 years in prison.

Meanwhile, Flynn pleaded guilty to making false statements to the FBI about his contacts with the former Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, as part of the Special Counsel, to Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Russian interference and possible collusion with Trump ally of the campaign, 2016 presidential elections.

But after müller’s statement of Flynn’s offense, the former national security adviser to the “materially false statements and omissions” in the Foreign Agent Registration Act declarations to the Ministry of justice about its lobbying projects with Turkey. In the FARA filing, Flynn allegedly falsely stated that his company, Flynn Intel Group, Inc., “don’t know whether or to what extent the Republic of Turkey was involved” in the Turkey project, and the project focused on the improvement of the US-American business organizations ” of confidence in respect of the business activities in Turkey.

Müller’s office has only charged him with a number of false statements about his communications with the Russian Ambassador Flynn is expected in Federal court later Tuesday in its judgment in connection with this charge. Earlier this month, Müller ‘ s office recommended that a mild punishment for Flynn, with the possibility of no jail time, stating that Flynn had “substantial” assistance to Federal investigators about “multiple ongoing investigations.”

Fox News’ Lillian LeCroy and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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