TEHRAN, April 2, YJC -Michael Flynn, who was recently forced out of his job as US President Donald Trump's national security adviser, has failed to list payments from Russia-linked entities on the first of two financial disclosure forms released by the administration.
TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) -
According to documents released by the White House on Saturday, the former official listed speaking engagements to Russian entities, including the Kremlin-funded RT TV and Volga-Dnepr Airlines. A financial disclosure form signed by Flynn on March 31 revealed this information.
An initial form was submitted to the Office of Government Ethics and the White House in February and just days before Flynn was ousted from his post amid controversy over his contacts with Russia's ambassador.
However, the process of review and revision of the first form in consultation with the White House Counsel's Office and the Office of Government Ethics was suspended when he resigned.
In those documents, he noted that he received fees through a speaker’s bureau, but he did not state the names of the organizations that paid to have him as a speaker.
In recent days, officials at the White House asked him to finish the process and advised him to itemize each organization that paid him.
Early in March, Rep. Elijah Cummings, the top Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, disclosed new documents showing that Flynn had also been paid in 2015 for speeches in Washington by Volga-Dnepr Airlines and Kaspersky Government Security Solutions.
The disclosure forms show that Flynn earned at least $1.3 million in the past year, including more than $827,000 through his consulting firm, Flynn Intel Group.
Flynn was forced to resign in February from his position as Trump's first national security adviser after it was revealed that he misled Vice President Mike Pence about a conversation he had with the Russian ambassador to the US in late December.
The conversation, which took place before Trump’s inauguration, centered around lifting then-President Barack Obama’s sanctions against Russia. Any discussion of sanctions at that time would have amounted to a breach of US law banning private citizens from engaging in foreign policy.
The FBI, as well as the Senate and House intelligence committees, are investigating Russia's alleged meddling in the 2016 US presidential election and any possible ties between Trump's associates and Moscow.
Flynn has been in discussions with congressional investigators on receiving immunity from "unfair prosecution” in exchange for agreeing to testify about ongoing probes into possible contacts between Trump's election campaign and Russia.