Roger Stone Convicted and Bill Barr Vindicated With 40 Month Sentence [Updated]

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Roger Stone has been sentenced to 40 months by U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson. I previously stated that the likely sentence would be half of what the prosecutors originally sought and that is precisely what the court did. The sentence not only completed the conviction of Roger Stone but completely vindicated Attorney Bill Barr on the appropriate length of the sentence. Barr has been unfairly accused of political influence in modifying the original sentence even though many of us denounced the original recommendation as wildly offbase. Not only did over a thousand former prosecutors demand his resignation without knowing the full facts, but one former colleague declared Barr to be “unAmerican.” If these individuals have a modicum of decency, they will acknowledge that Barr was right on the merits of this sentencing recommendation as demonstrated by the court itself.

The question was not whether the original recommendation was within the guidelines, but the proper calculation under those guidelines. As I discussed earlier, the prosecutors sought a major increase of the sentence as a “crime of violence.” As I stated on NPR this morning, the base offense level for these crimes is a little over a year. Enhancements were justified but the prosecutors seemed vindictive and unhinged in their arguments for up to nine years. This included effectively double counting aggravating elements of the underlying crimes. Jackson said that she would take the threats of Stone into account but declined to use enhancements to push the sentence to the top of the range. She also rejected claims that Stone showed extensive planning.

While Judge Jackson stood up for the original prosecutors and called the sentencing change “unprecedented,” she notably followed the opposing call for sentencing below half of what the prosecutors requested. Moreover, it is not clear what is “unprecedented” depending on your perspective. To some at Justice, the filing of a recommendation opposed by Main Justice might seem unprecedented or at least alarming. This does not mean that Jackson supports the intervention. Indeed, she seemed eager to defense the original team.

As a criminal defense attorney, I am also astonished by those who have agreed that the original sentence was excessive and extreme, but still insist that Main Justice should not have intervened. Given the widespread criticism of original sentencing recommendation, the controversy boils down to the fact that Main Justice modified the sentencing recommendation over the objections of the trial prosecutors. However, Main Justice has prosecutors too. The Criminal Division plays a role, as I earlier discussed, in such recommendations. Are critics suggesting that Main Justice is not allowed under the U.S. Attorneys manual to make such decisions or that the Justice Department should never, in full candor to the court, revised a recommendation?

Reports indicate that Main Justice thought that it was understood that a more moderate recommendation would be made. If Justice officials believed that this recommendation was excessive and unsupportable, I would hope that someone would have the courage to correct and not worry about the optics. The Justice Department has a duty of candor to the tribunal as well as a duty to do justice. If this sentence was viewed as excessive, it should be corrected.

I have been in cases with where prosecutors have sought excessive sentences but that does not make it acceptable or right. Given the overwhelming view that the original recommendation was wrong, I find it hard to understand why Main Justice should have stayed silent and not informed the court that justice would not be served with such a sentence.

Not surprisingly, the media seems to have moved on with little recognition that the original recommendation was manifestly wrong and excessive. Instead the media besmirched Barr’s reputation and then failed to report the countervailing facts. After the court came down precisely where some of us predicted, it just moved on to the question of whether Stone would be pardoned. Even with a justifiably angry court, the sentence came in at 40 months rather than 108 months.

While these former prosecutors did not wait for the full facts, it was later shown that the decision was made before Trump’s comments and that there was no communication with the President on the case. It was also later disclosed that Barr and other officials at Main Justice agreed that the recommendation was manifestly wrong. That included the acting U.S. Attorney. Main Justice and specifically the Criminal Division often coordinates or directs decisions in high-profile cases. All of that was ignored in favor of a narrative that Barr carried out the orders of Trump after he publicly denounced the prosecution.

The hair-trigger attacks have become a common feature in legal analysis in these controversies. In this case, however, it was reasonable for many to raise concerns after Trump’s tweets. I immediately called for an investigation and still believe that such an investigation is warranted. It is not the legitimacy of the concerns but the immediate conclusions that are so objectionable.

As I said in the prior column, Barr was right on the merits of the ultimate sentence and the court ended up exactly where he and Main Justice recommended on the sentencing of Roger Stone.

166 thoughts on “Roger Stone Convicted and Bill Barr Vindicated With 40 Month Sentence [Updated]”

  1. Who framed Roger Stone, an innocent man?

    It was a set-up / total entrapment by Mueller’s 18 Angry Democrats.

    Check out New Exculpatory Evidence that George Webb has discovered.

    Exculpatory Evidence of Roger Stone’s Innocence:
    Click HERE –>

    We need to get the evidence of Roger Stone’s innocence spread far and wide on Social & Alt-News Media.

    Let’s Get Busy Tweeting and Posting George Webb’s video, Patriots!

  2. Roger Stone is an innocent man.

    It was a set-up / total entrapment by Mueller’s 18 Angry Democrats.

    Check out New Exculpatory Evidence that George Webb has discovered.

    Exculpatory Evidence of Roger Stone’s Innocence:
    Click HERE –>

    We need to get the evidence of Roger Stone’s innocence spread far and wide on Social & Alt-News Media.

    Let’s Get Busy Tweeting and Posting George Webb’s video, Patriots!

  3. I challenge Professor Turley to address the arguments raised by Tucker Carlson in the video below that Judge Amy Berman Jackson should be impeached. I’m certain that if Professor Turley applied Professor Dershowitz’s “shoe on the other foot test,” he would agree with Carlson’s assessment. But it’s for that precise reason that Professor Turley will likely ignore Judge Jackson’s obvious and falgrant violations of due process.

  4. Russian were the only ones interfering in the 2016 election were working for Hillary/DNC/FBI/DOJ & being covered up by the Fed FISA courts & other Fed Courts/ AKA ABJ, CJ Roberts.

    But having overwelming proof doesn’t enough to make those above more then enough Americans know they are still lying their azzes off.

    This George Webb piece I found interesting that also helps put the Hillary/FBI/FISA Russia Hacking bullsh*t story in it’s grave.

    About 14 minutes & points out some exculpatory evidences that is already in evidence in Roger Stones favor.

    Pass the video along & expose the corruption in this case.
    George Webb comments on the Roger Stone frame up:

  5. No jail for Stone till lying fbi management goes 1st. Pres Trump will see to it!

  6. There was the initial recommendation, harsh but within sentencing guidelines. Then the lenient recommendation. On the day of sentencing, a confession of confusion and a reinstatement of the initial recommendation by the present new prosecutor who apologized for the confusion at the DoJ. The judge went with the lenient recommendation. The judge asked the DoJ lawyer if he had been told to write the lenient recommendation. He declined to answer. She asked him if he was instructed to sign the recommendation. He declined to answer. And the original prosecutors, all four, withdrew from the case. No, Barr is not off the hook.

  7. Wow! This article is awesome. It’s about time someone wrote a sequel to 1984.

    The great question that perplexed progressives throughout much of the 21st century was how to completely untether us from the past, thereby for the first time in history truly liberating ourselves from our moorings and ushering in a new age of gender freedom, radical equality, and ethnic equity.

    1. This George Webb piece I found interesting.

      About minutes & points out some exculpatory evidences that is already in evidence in Roger Stones favor.

      Pass the video along & expose the corruption in this case.

    1. If there’s people STILL doing the work of magnifying the Russian mischief, its the Hillary faction.

      But, I have nothing against Russian state, and in the long run it’s ok if Americans understand what a den of vipers DC has become, and lose confidence in obviously biased and manipulated institutions like the FBI. If the Russians have exposed the corruption that has set in, maybe they did us real Americans a favor, which will be of a lot more profound effect in the long run than however they put their fingers on either side of the scale.

      As a voter, Im utterly disgusted how the loser could unleash such a storm of retribution on the winner, how persistently it would endure, and how completely dishonest her cheerleaders in the bleachers have become.

      On the plus side, I have been more impressed over time with those few, generally left-wing journalists in America, who were strong on reporting the facts of this whole hoax, even though they clearly hate Trump too. Of course Hillary says they’re all Russian bots too!

      I sure hope Bernie wins the primary so the American people can make a clear choice between alternatives and not have the lingering cloud of DNC incompetence clouding the outcomes.

      I will vote for Trump over Bernie, but if Bernie wins, there better not be any fake impeachment based on bogus narratives and three years of total sabotage of the constitutional order!

      I also don’t believe that Bernie could, or even would, implement half the more nutty things he’s recommending, such as the socialized medicine. Nobody sane would get behind ending private health insurance in toto. That’s nuts. There would be Congressional opposition from both parties.

      So, how about this. Lets focus on policies and the 2020 election and let this tired, failed, 2016 election hoax narrative go.

      1. I can see your point, Kurtz. Although my take on the 2016 election is that the Russians got a perfect storm from their POV, a person running they’ve been grooming they could support and even overtly guide. Trump and his campaign in 2016 were solid marketers but politically clueless, so the Russians didn’t even need to formally collude. They could just throw the breadcrumbs and watch the campaign pick them up.

        They also a perfect candidate in Bernie with which they could wedge the Dem nominee. Something they try to do every election and will continue to do going forward. Mueller report was really instructive on this strategy.

        So, business as usual…, the Russians just had ideal conditions for their schtick to manifest in 2016.

        Disingenuity abounds around it. The Repub side in playing off that Trump wasn’t the perfect unknowing operative. The Dem side in playing off that this type of activity doesn’t happen all the time. Actually, Trump in some of his more free form moments is prone to just come right out and say things along these lines. So I’ll give him that.

      2. Kurtz, your fantasy conspiracy theory doesn’t hold up. The guy who Trump just removed for telling Congress about Russian interference in Trumps favor in 2020 IS A TRUMP APPOINTEE, having nothing to do with Hillary.Our entire intelligence community has been warning of this since 2017 and that includes Dan Coates, another Trump appointee and former GOP senator. You think he’s a Hillary guy? How about way back to 2016 when Comey knee capped Hillary 2 weeks before the election?

        You’re a smart guy, right? Why are you peddling nonsense and BS?

  8. As these things tend to do, especially in high profile cases. It’s the pandering to Trump that is throwing things so far out of whack. Barr may think he’s bridging some sort of Trump to reality gap, and the counterbalancing reaction to it, but a resignation and submission to Congressional oversight would go a lot further in that respect.

    And let’s not forget the hijacking of the Mueller report was entirely worthy of impeachment from his job. By itself.

  9. How many people lie to Congress and how many people does Congress lie to. It’s back and forth.

    1. The right to private property is not qualified and is absolute. Private property cannot be interfered with by any public entity including Congress and any inferior level of government.

      Congress has the power to tax only for “…general Welfare…” not individual or specific welfare, aka redistribution of wealth.

      Congress has the power to regulate only the “value” of “money,” the flow of commerce among nations, states and Indian tribes, and land and naval Forces.

      Sorry, communism and socialism (i.e. communism-in-waiting) are unconstitutional.

  10. The sadistic leftist are always drudging up scum, in this case, partisan ex-prosecutors, to push their deep state agenda.

    Hate runs rampant in this group, their authority is being challenged, and they are loosing their power.

    1. “Hate runs rampant…”

      Here’s some real hatred for you:

      “Germany shooting: ‘Far-right extremist’ carried out shisha bars attacks”

      ‘The attack comes amid growing concerns about far-right violence in Germany. Speaking in Berlin, Mrs Merkel said: “Racism is a poison. Hate is a poison and this poison exists in our society and is already to blame for many crimes.”‘

    2. “their authority is being challenged, and they are loosing their power”

      It is only in the last 1-2 weeks that many of us are realizing the “they” or “their” is not just the liberals in the US House & Senate, DNC elites, or Hillary, Liawatha, Biden, MSM. The cult of liberalism is a large net that ensnares a vast array of cult believers. They are “professional staff” & attorneys who are entrenched as Federal employees who also hate Trump. Attorneys and laymen at DOJ, FBI, CIA, Federal agencies, who are holdovers from Obama, GWBush, Clinton presidencies, these parasites hate Trump and Bill Barr.

      The attempted coup against Trump was a ground swell of liberals who are part of the “swamp”. These bureaucrats were cult believers of Obama, Loretta Lynch, Eric “wingman” Holder, James Comey, John Brennan, and others. Thus the recent “news” from the MSM as to 1000+ former DOJ attorneys, or an organization of Judges who convened some type of emergency meeting in response to the Roger Stone excessive prosecution, all of these individuals also have a vested interest to keep their jobs, or safeguard their “religion” of liberalism. Protecting the Bill of Rights for all Americans particularly on university campuses, de-funding abortion particularly late-term abortions/infanticide, gathering together all Americans regardless of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status and hence exposing the lie that all “Blacks” are Democrat faithful, all Hispanics demand special treatment, all universities must have “safe spaces”….all are lies

      so yes, you hit the nail on the head with “”their authority is being challenged, and they are loosing their power”

      I just wish we had all seen this decades ago as opposed to believing their lie that they are here to help Americans. They are not. They care only about their cult of power.

      1. The attempted coup against Trump was a ground swell of liberals who are part of the “swamp”.
        The so-called coup attempts were the deep-state swamp helping Trump get re-elected. The only way to avoid that simple fact is to bury your head in the sand.

        so yes, you hit the nail on the head with “”their authority is being challenged, and they are loosing their power”

        To believe that you also have to bury your head deep in the sand. Oh sure, a few minions here and there get thrown under the bus to convince you that somebody is losing power, but the deep-state swamp is more powerful under trump than it ever was.

  11. Barr’s Intervention In Stone Case Worse Than It Looked

    An examination of federal sentencing processes and principles makes clear that Mr. Barr’s intervention in the Stone case is actually considerably worse than it initially appeared.

    Some background on federal sentencing: The United States Sentencing Guidelines offer guidance on what kind of penalty a convicted criminal defendant should receive based on the crime and the characteristics of the defendant. The guidelines are nonbinding, and judges are permitted to sentence above or below them. But the guidelines seek to add consistency and fairness to the federal criminal justice system so that similar defendants are treated similarly, and the Justice Department in particular has sought to hew closely to them.

    In fact, the Trump administration has made clear, in a document colloquially known as “the Sessions memo,” that it expects prosecutors to consistently push for guidelines sentences. “In most cases,” the Sessions memo says, “recommending a sentence within the advisory guideline range will be appropriate. Recommendations for sentencing departures or variances require supervisory approval, and the reasoning must be documented in the file.”

    Recommending a sentence within the guideline range was precisely what the career prosecutors in the Stone case did. They engaged in an exhaustive analysis of the applicable guidelines, supported by ample evidence and careful argument, and asked for a sentence precisely within the range called for by the guidelines.

    Even the Justice Department’s extraordinary decision to reverse course the next day noted that the guidelines “enhancements” — the factors that led to the original sentencing recommendation — were “perhaps technically applicable,” and prosecutors on Thursday did not dispute the applicability of those enhancements. In other words, Mr. Barr and those carrying out his wishes did not really dispute the facts and the law as carefully laid out by the career prosecutors. Instead, they presented a litany of the arguments that Mr. Stone’s own lawyers had made for ignoring the guidelines and giving him lenient treatment.

    There is one other factor that makes this move all the more extraordinary. Roger Stone did not plead guilty, cooperate or accept responsibility in any sense. He took the case to trial, showed contempt toward the justice system and disobeyed the presiding judge’s orders. In cases in which a defendant not only fights prosecution but flouts the authority of the government and the court, it is standard practice to aggressively push for a sentence at least within the advisory guideline range.

    Edited from: “What Barr Did For Stone Is Lke I’ve Never Seen Before”

    The New York Times, 2/20/20

    1. “What Barr Did For Stone Is Like I’ve Never Seen Before”
      Someone living under a rock undoubtedly.

      1. Noah Bookbinder
        Help @CREWcrew reach 100,000 people demanding AG Barr’s resignation. Add your voice in support of restoring integrity to the Justice Department:…
        It’s understandable. As one of David Brock’s successors at CREW, the author or the NY Times opinion piece ( Noah Bookman) has probably been very busy.

        1. Correction: Noah Bookbinder, not “Bookman”.
          Richard Painter, who’s been unsuccessfully going after Trump since Trump was inaugerated on the “emoluments” issue, succeeded David Brock.
          And Bookbinder succeeded Painter.

        2. Tom/Anonymous,, Is Bookbinder right? Were the prosecutors correctly within guidelines? These are the proper questions. But you’re not answering or addressing them.

          1. “In most cases,” the Sessions memo says, “recommending a sentence within the advisory guideline range will be appropriate. Recommendations for sentencing departures or variances require supervisory approval, and the reasoning must be documented in the file.”
            This is from the Noah Bookbinder Editorial that Seth Warner posted.
            This excerpt says “in most cases”.
            There have been numerous opinions about Barr’s intervention in the Roger Stone sentencing.
            Including a very recent one in Prof. Turley’s column, where he wrote that the prosecutors we’re not “independent contractors” and we’re subject to supervision (and intervention) of the Attorney General.
            It’s a debatable issue, and not surprising that the head of CREW weighs in against Barr’s actions.
            ( There is a Jan. 24, 2017 article about Bookbinder’s involvement in CREW’s emoluments lawsuit; that article was 4 days after Trump took office).
            I’m not familiar enough with federal sentencing to present a conclusion about which side of this debate is “right”; Barr in scheduled to give Congressional testimony at the end of March, and we’ll hear directly from him and the members of Congress who question him.
            I think that will be worth watching, and probably more instructive than a commentator here who scavenges to find and present Opinion Pieces from like the one from the head of CREW, Noah Bookbinder.

                1. Seth Warner,
                  I gave a comprehensive response to your question. Either you are too dense to understand the answer, of you are pretending to be that dense.

  12. And speaking of threats…

    ‘We will hunt you down’: Man threatened attorney of Trump whistleblower, prosecutors say

    ‘Walter M. Shaub Jr., the former director of the independent Office of Government Ethics who clashed with the Trump administration over ethics violations, said the threats could portend further violence.

    ‘“Trump is going to get someone hurt or worse with this personal attacks on people,” Shaub said on Twitter.’

    1. Reminds me of the crazy Bernie supporter who went and shot up a ball field where a bunch of Republican Congress people were practicing. The Crazy Bernie Bro MSNBC viewer wanted to kill some Republicans and almost did. But Steve Scalise survived.

        1. Right…….that shooting was in 2017, so hardly worth mentioning in the ” here and now”. 🙄

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