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Flynn said Russian Federation sanctions would be 'ripped up' - congressman

Flynn said Russian Federation sanctions would be 'ripped up' - congressman”

A leading House Democrat revealed Wednesday he was approached by a whistleblower who said a businessman received a text from Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn on January 20, 2016 at 12:11 pm - as the newly sworn President Donald Trump was giving his inaugural address - indicating that a lucrative nuclear energy plan they had been developing with Russian partners was "Good to go".

Representative Elijah Cummings, the senior Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, recounted the whistleblower's allegations as part of a push to have Flynn and others testify to his committee.

The project in question - promoted by a group of former senior United States military officers, and often described as a "Marshall Plan" of sorts - would involve U.S. companies working with Russian companies to build and operate nuclear plants in the Middle East, and export spent fuel from those plants.

According to Cummings's letter, the witness said he met Alex Copson, Flynn's former business associate, at an inaugural event.

Gowdy has not responded to requests from ABC News for comment.

According to the account, the unnamed whistleblower ran into Copson at a party in Washington, D.C. on inauguration day.

Copson is the managing partner of ACU, a company that had funded a 2015 trip Flynn took the Middle East that he failed to disclose on security clearance forms.

Flynn had assured his former associate that US sanctions against Russian Federation would immediately be "ripped up" by the Trump administration, a move that would help facilitate the deal, the associate told the witness.

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Flynn had texted Copson with the same message - that the nuclear reaction project was "good to go" - from his place on the dais outside the Capitol 10 minutes into Trump's inaugural address, the whistleblower told Cummings.

The allegation posed new troubles for Flynn, who left the White House after barely three weeks and pleaded guilty last week to lying to FBI investigators in the Russian Federation election meddling probe.

The company did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

Copson allegedly told those around him that "Mike [Flynn] has been putting everything in place for us".

Copson showed the witness the text on his phone. He said Flynn did not cash the check, however. He was ousted as national security advisor after only 24 days on the job. "I have spoken to this whistleblower, and I find this person to be authentic, credible, and reliable", Cummings wrote.

Media captionAfter Flynn's guilty plea, what next for the Russian Federation investigation?

The congressman wrote that the whistleblower was "extremely uncomfortable" with the conversation and left shortly thereafter. Prosecutors "asked my office to hold on the public release of this information until they completed certain investigative steps", Cummings wrote. Flynn, a retired US Army lieutenant general, pleaded guilty in federal court last week to one count of making false statements to the FBI and is now a cooperating witness in special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into possible coordination between Trump's campaign and Russian intermediaries during the 2016 election.



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