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Roger Stone lawyers ask for judge's recusal

Roger Stone's lawyers request new trial

In a late-night filing on Friday, Roger Stone's lawyers asked for Judge Amy Berman Jackson to recuse herself from the case because she stated at Stone's sentencing that the jury acted with "integrity." Earlier this week, Jackson sentenced Stone, a longtime GOP operative and Trump confidant, to 40 months behind bars for lying to Congress. 

In arguing for a new trial, Stone's lawyers have alleged at least one juror was biased against him. "Whether the subject juror (and perhaps others) served with 'integrity' is one of the paramount questions presented in the pending Motion," Stone's lawyers wrote. 

"Stone's Motion for New Trial is directly related to the integrity of a juror," Stone's lawyers argued. "It is alleged that a juror misled the Court regarding her ability to be unbiased and fair and the juror attempted to cover up evidence that would directly contradict her false claims of impartiality. Nevertheless, at Mr. Stone's sentencing, the Court emphatically stated its views regarding both of the defendant and the jurors in his trial."   

In her closing remarks, Jackson said "sure, the defense is free to say: So what? Who cares? But, I'll say this: Congress cared. The United States Department of Justice and the United States Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia that prosecuted the case and is still prosecuting the case cared. The jurors who served with integrity under difficult circumstances cared. The American people cared. And I care." 

Stone's lawyers argued that Jackson "emphatically" stated her opinion regarding the defendant and jurors. 

Jackson said earlier this week that Stone's sentence would be deferred until she rules on the request for a new trial. He has been on supervised release and under a gag order over the course of the case.

In addition to the prison sentence, Jackson said Stone must perform 250 hours of community service and pay $20,700 in fines and fees. He will also be subject to two more years of supervised release once he leaves prison.

A federal jury convicted Stone, 67, on seven charges of obstruction, making false statements and witness tampering in November 2019 in a case stemming from former special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation.   

Earlier this month, all four government prosecutors in Stone's case abruptly withdrew, with one resigning outright, after senior Justice Department officials, including Attorney General William Barr, softened the sentencing recommendation they had sent to the judge. 

Clare Hymes, Stefan Becket and Amber Ali contributed reporting.

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