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Federal judge puts gag order on Roger Stone’s attorneys

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A federal judge has placed a partial gag order on lawyers for informal Trump advisor Roger Stone, barring his attorneys from publicly discussing the case in order not to bias potential jurors.

The order, issued by US District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson in the District of Columbia, states that Stone’s lawyers “must refrain from making statements to the media or in public settings that pose a substantial likelihood of material prejudice.”

The special counsel Robert Mueller’s office indicted Stone in January on one count of obstruction of justice, five counts of making false statements to the FBI and congressional investigators, and one count of witness tampering in connection with his contacts with people linked to the radical pro-transparency group WikiLeaks.

The longtime Trump ally and informal campaign adviser later said he plans to plead not guilty to all seven federal charges he faces in Mueller’s investigation, and will not testify against President Donald Trump.

Read more: Mueller indicts former Trump campaign adviser Roger Stone on charges of obstruction, false statements, and witness tampering

“I will plead not guilty to these charges, I will defeat them in court, I believe this is a politically motivated investigation,” he told reporters after his release from custody after being arrested by the FBI, throwing up two peace signs to mimic President Richard Nixon’s famous victory symbol.

Criminal defense attorney Arash Hashemi explained to INSIDER in a email that partial or full gag orders are “common in most high-profile cases, and in the Roger Stone case Judge Berman Jackson may take this step because Stone has already been vocal about his indictment.”

The current gag order does not prohibit Stone himself from publicly speaking out about the case in most situations, only restricting him from speaking to reporters on courthouse steps before and after his hearings — presumably so as not to bias jurors who may be in the vicinity.

Stone has frequently echoed Trump’s claims that the Mueller investigation is a rigged “witch hunt” and a deep-state plot meant to take down Trump and anyone who sides with him. He has fundraised for his legal defense by selling T-shirts with the slogan “Roger Stone did nothing wrong.”

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