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Dutch Lawyer First Person Sentenced as Part of Mueller’s Russia Probe

Dutch Lawyer First Person Sentenced as Part of Mueller’s Russia ProbeDutch Lawyer First Person Sentenced as Part of Mueller’s Russia Probe

A Dutch lawyer was sentenced to 30 days in prison and fined $20,000 (€16,300) on Tuesday after being found guilty of lying to US special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigators about contacts between President Donald Trump’s campaign staff and Russian intelligence officials.

Alex van der Zwaan, the son-in-law of one of Russia’s most prominent business tycoons, was sentenced after pleading guilty to lying about his contacts with Trump’s former campaign deputy Rick Gates and a former member of Russia’s GRU intelligence agency, DW reported.

Prosecutors alleged that in 2016 van der Zwaan and Gates shared communications with a person they knew to be a former Moscow intelligence official. Prosecutors said the 33-year-old Dutch lawyer admitted to withholding emails and repeatedly lying to Mueller’s investigators about his contact with Gates and the Russian official—referred to in court documents as “Person A.”

Since being called out on his lies, van der Zwaan, who previously worked for the law firm Skadden Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom, has agreed to cooperate with the investigation.

“Your honor, what I did was wrong. I apologize to the court, and I apologize to my wife,” van der Zwaan told the judge.

However, US District Judge Amy Berman Jackson said incarceration was necessary to deter others from lying to Mueller’s investigation.

Van der Zwaan had previously worked with Gates and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort back in 2012, carrying out work on behalf of the Moscow-backed Ukrainian government under then-President Viktor Yanukovych.

 

 

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