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Former national security adviser Michael Flynn pleaded guilty Friday to lying to the FBI, becoming the first Trump White House official to face criminal charges and admit guilt so far in the wide-ranging election investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller, Time reported.

Flynn also agreed to cooperate with Mueller’s probe, which focuses on Russian meddling in the 2016 election and possible coordination between Russia and Donald Trump’s campaign aimed at sending the Republican businessman to the White House.

Flynn was an early and vocal Trump supporter on the campaign trail and was present for consequential moments in the campaign, the following transition period and the early days of Trump’s presidency, making him a valuable potential tool for prosecutors and agents. His business dealings and foreign interactions have made him a central focus of Mueller’s investigation.

Trump’s former national security adviser admitted to lying about his conversations with Russia’s ambassador to the United States during the transition period before Trump’s inauguration.

In a statement, Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general said he accepted responsibility for his actions and added: “My guilty plea and agreement to cooperate with the Special Counsel’s Office reflect a decision I made in the best interests of my family and of our country.”

 

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