Roger Stone Aide Hit With Contempt Order in Russia Probe

WASHINGTON (CN) – A federal judge found an aide to longtime Trump ally Roger Stone in contempt Friday for refusing to comply with a subpoena demanding his testimony in the probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election.

Paul Kamenar, attorney for Andrew Miller, joined by Peter Flaherty, chairman of the National Legal and Policy Center, left, talks to reporters after a federal judge found Miller in contempt for refusing to testify before the grand jury hearing evidence in special counsel Robert S. Mueller’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, at the District Court in Washington, on August 10, 2018. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Although the order to hold Andrew Miller in contempt is sealed, it appeared on the case docket Friday afternoon, following a closed hearing on the matter that morning.

U.S. District Chief Judge Beryl Howell, who is presiding over the grand jury matter, ordered Miller to appear for testimony on July 31 in a 93-page opinion denying Miller’s motion to quash the grand jury subpoena.

Miller’s attorney, Paul Kamenar, did not return several emails seeking comment regarding Friday’s proceedings or what Miller plans to do next.

At the agreement of both parties, the court unsealed the case on Wednesday.

According to an unsealed transcript of a June 18 hearing in the matter, Miller is seeking immunity and to limit the questions posed to him about Stone during any testimony before the grand jury.

Prosecutors want to question Miller about WikiLeaks and its chief, Julian Assange, who published troves of hacked Democratic emails during the 2016 presidential campaign.

The government also seeks to question Miller about Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks, which according to Mueller’s July 13 indictment of 12 Russian intelligence officers, served as fictitious online personas.

The indicted Russian intelligence officers allegedly hacked into the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, along with Hillary Clinton’s campaign staff and the Democratic National Committee, and used Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks to release the stolen material.

Miller’s attorney Alicia Dearn told Howell during the June 18 hearing that Miller has no testimony to offer about WikiLeaks, Assange, Guccifer 2.0 or DCLeaks, but would assert his Fifth Amendment privilege for any testimony about Stone.

Miller wants immunity for such testimony, Dearn said, over concerns about potential questions involving financial transactions.

“There were political action committees that he assisted Mr. Stone with,” Dearn said. “And we’re concerned that there may be some financial issues with those transactions.”

Dearn also stressed during the June 18 hearing that her client has done nothing wrong.

“Although I believe he’s innocent of any wrongdoing, I don’t want my client to step into something that might be happening,” Dearn said.

Prosecutor Aaron Zelinski meanwhile called it “contradictory” to assert that Miller is innocent and has no valuable testimony to offer but simultaneously has Fifth Amendment concerns. Zelinski said the court should not allow Miller to assert a Fifth Amendment privilege “as a broad brush to stop grand jury questioning.”

According to the transcript, Zelinski said Miller had previously sat for an interview with FBI agents and was willing to meet with the special counsel’s office for an informal interview before Dearn joined the case.

The court docket shows that the subpoena for his testimony was issued in June, with grand jury testimony scheduled for the end of that month.

According to the transcript for the June 18 hearing, Miller worked for Stone prior to 2015 but the subpoena sought testimony and documents related to his work for Stone from June 2015 through the present.

Dearn said Miller has thousands of documents to search through that he received beyond 2016 as attachments to emails Stone forwarded to him concerning booking requests.

Dearn said Miller doesn’t do any work for Stone now, but still receives the emails.

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